Provincial biologists capture one of three remaining mountain caribou in a South Selkirk herd, to relocate it with a larger group in an effort to maintain a viable breeding population, January 2019. (B.C. forests ministry)

Provincial biologists capture one of three remaining mountain caribou in a South Selkirk herd, to relocate it with a larger group in an effort to maintain a viable breeding population, January 2019. (B.C. forests ministry)

B.C. calls for new caribou habitat restoration projects

Work to restore areas disrupted by logging, roadbuilding

The B.C. government is taking applications for a $6.5 million fund to restore caribou habitat and protect the endangered animals from predators.

Applications are being accepted until Nov. 1 from communities, first nations and non-profit groups by the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation’s caribou habitat restoration fund, the forests ministry announced Wednesday.

Projects will include installing fences to block predators from using old roads to get access to caribou habitat, and planting native trees and plants that support the return of caribou habitat to its undisturbed state. Woody debris is also used to restore wilderness areas and disrupt predator activity.

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The foundation’s work was given an initial $2 million in the spring of 2018, as part of a lengthy effort by the province to respond to the decline of its 54 known herds. Its first set of 11 projects included a lichen restoration area in the Tweedsmuir region, restoring 10 km of forest roads to benefit the Chase caribou herd, and restoring an oil and gas exploration road west of Chetwynd that affects the Klinse-Za and Scott herds.


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tfletcher@blackpress.ca

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