Protecting Species At Risk And Their Habitats



    McGuinty Government Supports Local Stewardship Projects

    TORONTO, July 17 /CNW/ -

    NEWS

    More than $900,000 in funding will support 29 volunteer stewardship
projects in eastern Ontario this year under the province's Species at Risk
Stewardship Fund.
    Proposals to increase awareness of at-risk species of turtles and snakes,
monitor nesting success of black terns, and develop disease-resistant
butternut trees are among the projects supporting public outreach and
education initiatives and a variety of stewardship activities to protect and
restore species and essential habitat.
    The $18-million, four-year Species at Risk Stewardship Fund
(http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/en/Business/Species/2ColumnSubPage/STEL01_131229.htm
l) is part of the Ministry of Natural Resources' stewardship-first approach to
species protection, and is available to landowners, farmers, Aboriginal
peoples, academic institutions, industries, municipalities, conservation
organizations, stewardship councils and others across the province for
eligible protection and recovery activities.

    QUOTES

    "I'm impressed with the leadership and commitment shown by the
organizations, groups and individuals who are volunteering their time to
protect and recover our most vulnerable species and their habitats," said
Natural Resources Minister Donna Cansfield
(http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/en/About/2ColumnSubPage/226953.html). "Working
together we can reverse the rate of species decline in Ontario and ensure
future generations enjoy and benefit from a healthy and diverse natural
environment."
    "We're encouraging the kind of volunteer stewardship activities that are
vital to protecting essential habitat and green space," said
Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry MPP Jim Brownell. "I'm proud of the great work
being done by volunteers across eastern Ontario to protect and recover species
at risk and to keep others from becoming endangered in the first place."

    
    QUICK FACTS

    -   In 2008-2009, 108 projects will receive close to $5 million in
        funding through the Species at Risk Stewardship Fund focussing on
        outreach, recovery and inventory and monitoring surveys.

    -   Ontario is home to more than 30,000 species, of which more than 180
        are currently identified as being at risk.

    -   Six out of the eight turtle species in Ontario are listed as
        endangered, threatened or of special concern.

    LEARN MORE

    -   Find out more about Species At Risk
        (http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/en/Business/Species/index.html) in Ontario
        (ontario.ca/speciesatrisk)

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                                           ontario.ca/natural-resources-news
                                                      Disponible en français


    BACKGROUNDER
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                 LOCAL STEWARDSHIP PROJECTS RECEIVE FUNDING
                       FOR SPECIES AT RISK PROTECTION
                                                               July 17, 2008
    

    Twenty-nine volunteer projects in southeastern Ontario will receive more
than $900,000 from the provincial Species at Risk Stewardship Fund this year
to help protect and recover species at risk.

    Alderville Black Oak Savannah - $12,775 to support an inventory of the
animals and insects in the largest remnant black oak savanna and tallgrass
prairie habitat in central Ontario. The information will be useful in
determining best management practices for restoring habitat.
    Contact: Janine McLeod, 705-778-1391

    Algonquin to Adirondack Conservation Association - $56,945 to support a
species inventory of fish and turtles in the Gananoque River watershed and
promote good stewardship practices among local landowners.
    Contact: Svenja Belaoussoff, 613-659-4824

    Amelia Argue - $3,000 to support production of a 2009 Endangered Reptiles
and Amphibians of Canada calendar to contribute to public awareness about
Ontario's reptiles and amphibians and encourage good stewardship practices for
these species.
    Contact: Amelia Argue, 705-313-0527

    
    Eastern Ontario Model Forest - $246,645 to support four projects:
    -   A variety of stewardship outreach initiatives aimed at woodlot
        owners, cottagers and agricultural groups.
    -   A collaborative group of conservation organizations that are
        developing an organized, strategic approach to effective species at
        risk stewardship in eastern Ontario.
    -   An on-the-ground inventory of the current vegetative cover in eastern
        Ontario that will be used for future development of species at risk
        habitat conservation work.
    -   An atlas project documenting all reptiles and amphibians in eastern
        Ontario, many of which are at-risk. As part of an accompanying
        outreach initiative, landowners will be encouraged to undertake
        stewardship activities for these species and to contribute their
        observations to the atlas.
    Contact: Elizabeth Holmes, 613-258-8415
    

    Friends of Bonnechere Park - $86,865 to support a project promoting
awareness of Ontario's at-risk bird species and their habitats through
community outreach including development of a set of curriculum-based
education tools, an interactive game and quiz, multi-media presentation and a
birder's checklist.
    Contact: Betty Biesenthal, 613-732-9273

    Friends of Salmon River - $34,050 to support species at risk inventory
activities. The project also includes a landowner engagement program to foster
awareness and encourage stewardship and recovery activities.
    Contact: Gray Merriam, 613-335-3589

    Lanark Stewardship Council - $49,700 to support development of a
multimedia educational resource on species at risk, including a video, an
interactive game, website and lesson plans for grades 4, 6, 7 and 9.
    Contact: Franziska von Rosen, 613-267-4200, Ext. 3401

    Leeds County Stewardship Council - $28,900 to support implementation of a
stewardship strategy with landowners and local drivers that will improve
habitat and mitigate road mortality for populations of three at-risk species
of turtles in the St. Lawrence River.
    Contact: Karen Brown and Dwayne Struthers, 613-342-8526

    Lennox and Addington Stewardship Council - $17,800 to support development
of a curriculum for grades four and seven to increase awareness and knowledge
about species at risk, and encourage students to get involved in species and
habitat recovery, improvement and protection activities.
    Contact: John Liggett, 613-379-5060

    Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority - $30,000 to support an
outreach and monitoring project that will work through a collaboration of
industry and government agencies to identify opportunities for safe eel
passage through hydro generating dams. The findings will lead to
recommendations on the best management practices and eel-friendly devices for
each structure.
    Contact: Mike Yee, 613-259-2421

    Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters - $20,306 to support the
development of education and awareness materials for the Lake Ontario Atlantic
Salmon Restoration Program. Materials include brochures, laminated Lake
Ontario salmon and trout identification guides, and stream-side signs with
identification and fishing regulation information.
    Contact: Chris Robinson, 705-748-6324, Ext. 237

    Prince Edward County Stewardship Council - $2,000 to produce and
distribute an educational poster featuring a cross-section of at-risk plants
and animals found in Prince Edward County. Posters will be distributed to
schools, libraries and community town halls and at local public events.
    Contact: Brian Credico, 613-966-1546

    Queen's University - $120,000 to conduct effective monitoring of at-risk
species of turtles using wireless sensor networks with the goal of using the
information to develop effective recovery strategies.
    Contact: Dr. Mohamed Ibnkahla, 613-533-3074

    Queen's University - $11,838 to support a project that aims to prevent
habitat loss and other threats to the Eastern foxsnake. The project includes
distribution of public education pamphlets about this at risk-species.
    Contact: Dr. Stephen Lougheed and Jeffrey Row, 613-533-6128

    Rideau Round Table - $6,800 to support a public outreach and education
project that will take groups, including children, out in voyageur canoes to
allow them to see and learn how to protect and restore turtle habitat along
the Rideau Waterway from Ottawa to Kingston.
    Contact: Stew Hamill, 613-269-3415

    Rideau Valley Conservation Authority - $7,500 to support a fish habitat
mapping project in the Rideau Valley watershed and identify restoration
opportunities for future stewardship projects for local landowners who want to
restore stream and river habitat for at-risk species.
    Contact: Jennifer Lamoureux, 613-692-3571, Ext. 1108

    Rideau Valley Conservation Authority - $18,400 to support a grafting
project to preserve the genetics of canker resistant butternut trees in
eastern Ontario, which would serve as breeding material for future screening
and propagation efforts to produce resistant seedlings. The project is part of
a larger regional butternut tree recovery program.
    Contact: Rudy Dyck, 613-692-3571, Ext. 11

    
    Raisin Region Conservation Authority - $13,145 to support two projects:
    -   A study of the status of two at-risk fish species, the cutlip minnow
        and the bridle shiner, aimed at increasing protection for these
        species and identifying potential habitat for improvement and
        recovery activities.
    -   Monitoring the nesting success of black terns in the St. Lawrence
        River area of concern and to test a floating nest platform as a
        potential solution to nesting losses that are a result of severe
        water fluctuations in the river.
    Contact: Chris Critoph, 613-938-3611
    

    Renfrew County Stewardship Council - $14,700 to support production of an
identification booklet featuring the 49 species at risk in Renfrew County and
a series of fact sheets outlining best practices for stewardship and habitat
enhancement.
    Contact: Bob Dobson, 613-646-2488

    St. Lawrence River Institute of Environmental Sciences - $29,550 to
conduct a study of the status of the cutlip minnow and provide data that will
help in the development of species protection and recovery activities.
    Contact: Dr. Brian Hickey, 613-936-6620, Ext. 225

    St. Mary's Cement Inc - $22,700 to support the second phase of a
multi-year project to conserve and manage six species at risk and their
habitat in a Lake Ontario wetland in Brighton on land owned by St. Mary's
Cement Inc. This phase includes inventory and monitoring activities, and a
focus on outreach and education to increase public awareness about the
importance of good stewardship practices.
    Contact: Melanie Horton, 416-696-4459

    Seburn Ecological Services - $3,200 to support an inventory to determine
if the spotted turtle is still present in two protected areas in the Kaladar
area. Additional monitoring in another area will look at the population size
and age distribution of this at-risk species.
    Contact: David Seburn, 613-820-9125

    South Nation Conservation Authority - $13,000 to support the launch of
Turtle Watch, the third phase of a program to protect species of at-risk
turtles and their habitat.
    Contact: Adriana Hoogenboom, 877-984-2948, Ext 301

    Trent University - $5,000 to support a study of the genetic status and
other information about Ontario badgers that will be useful in the development
of recovery plans for this endangered species.
    Contact: Dr. C.J. Kyle, 705-748-1011, Ext. 7055

    Trent University - $104,500 to support production of a guide to
conserving habitat for forest birds in southern Ontario that will target
habitat creation, conservation and management for declining forest birds and
species at risk.
    Contact: Dr. Erica Nol, 705-748-1011, Ext. 7640

    
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    Jason Travers, Fish and Wildlife Branch, 705-755-1754

                                           ontario.ca/natural-resources-news
                                                      Disponible en français
    





For further information:

For further information: David Bauer, Minister's Office, (416) 314-2212;
Jolanta Kowalski, Communications Services Branch, (416) 314-2106

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