Community support ensures success of Christina Lake project

Mona Mattei
By Mona Mattei
May 6th, 2010

With the momentum gained by community donations, partners have come forward to make the Christina Lake North Bay Buoy Project to protect sensitive wetlands in the north part of the lake possible. The project, a partnership between the Christina Lake Stewardship Society (CLSS), the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB), and B.C. Parks, put out a call for support to raise the $6,000 needed to purchase equipment and in just two weeks matching funds guaranteed that the project will be done this summer. In fact, so much funding was received they are able to do an expanded project.

“The Grand Forks District Savings Credit Union committed $2,000, matching community donations for this very important protection project on Christina Lake. That brought our total to $4,000 of the $6,000 needed to do this project to the extent that is required to properly protect this valuable wetland habitat,” says Brenda LaCroix, co-ordinator of CLSS.

“Right after we announced their contribution, Grace McGregor, regional representative for Christina Lake, committed the final $2,000! Thanks to Grace and everyone who has supported us. This is a very worthwhile endeavor to protect the valuable resources that help to maintain not only wildlife habitat but also water quality that is essential to all of us.” Granby Wilderness Society added an additional $500 to the project total. Community donations have totaled over $3000. In all, the society raised over $7500.

LaCroix says that the society is in the process of applying for a park use permit and a permit under the Navigable Waters Act to place the buoys at the north end bay. The project will be in partnership with the CLSS and the RDKB under a volunteer agreement contract with B.C. Parks. The RDKB will be placing the buoys in the late spring and removing them in the late fall.

Through the summer monitoring will involve a site inspection of the North Bay throughout the summer months. LaCroix is also talking to B.C. Parks about signs for Sandner Creek that will restrict boat access to the creek for 30 metres on each side of the mouth of the creek. This is to protect spawning habitat and minimize the disturbance of fish migration.

“Our collective goal is to protect the North Bay Wetland and Sandner Creek by minimizing the negative impacts of motor boat traffic on aquatic and riparian habitat within these sensitive areas (which includes many species at risk). Limiting boat traffic in this shallow bay will reduce wildlife disturbance and maintain important habitat for a myriad of species such as the Western Painted Turtle, Bald Eagles, Blue Heron, Grizzly Bears, Black Bears, and several fish species,” said LaCroix.

“Limiting boat traffic will also slow the spread of the introduced and very invasive aquatic plant Eurasian Water milfoil, which currently threatens to encroach into nearby littoral habitat areas within Gladstone Provincial Park – most notably, the area around the mouth of Sandner Creek which historically is among the most important stream spawning Kokanee habitat on Christina Lake.”

So along with monitoring the buoys, the creek mouth will be monitored and activities would be reported back to the society’s office. LaCroix is also inviting volunteers to assist with monitoring throughout the summer. Under a volunteer contract, and for liability insurance, anyone that wants to volunteer their services will have to be a member of the CLSS. LaCroix says the initial parts of the project will need to be completed prior to the July long weekend including the purchase of the buoys, permit processes, and placement of the buoys.

For more details on the project contact LaCroix by phone 250-447-2504, or email: bllacroix@yahoo.com.



This post was syndicated from https://boundarysentinel.com
Categories: General


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