A contribution of $80,000 to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to aid in efforts to revitalize wildlife habitat in the East Kootenay region was announced by East Kootenay MLA Bill Bennett on behalf of Water, Land and Air Protection Minister Joyce Murray. The announcement was made at a meeting of the Cranbrook Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.
“Our government’s primary focus for wildlife is conservation,” said Murray. “We are making decisions based on science to ensure that we maintain healthy wildlife populations now and for the future.”
“I am pleased the government has recognized the importance of this group’s activities and partnered with them to improve the wildlife habitat,” said Bennett. “This grant allows the Foundation to restore declining Trench Grasslands to support wildlife populations.”
Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA Wendy McMahon added her support to the ministry’s wildlife project. “Growth of trees in this area has significantly reduced grasslands that wildlife depend on for their habitat. I’m pleased to see the ministry working with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and taking a proactive approach to this problem.”
The provincial government is committed to environmental protection, and partnerships with non-governmental agencies such as the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation add value by assisting us in managing our natural wildlife resources.
The grassland ecosystems represented in the Rocky Mountain Trench are unique, vital and life sustaining systems that provide shelter, food and protection to a wide variety of plants and animals. The trench is an important reserve for native grasslands that once covered a larger portion of the province.