Tag Archives: Great Bear Rainforest

The Story Behind ‘Keepers of the Land’

The audio version of this story begins with a solitary male voice raised in a seemingly ageless First Nations chant. Then Doug Neasloss, elected chief counselor of the Kitasoo Xai’xais First Nation, states, “We’ve always had the responsibility to steward, that’s what we are doing.” 

The clip was taken from Deirdre Leowinata and Tavish Campbell’s documentary ‘Keepers of the Land.’ They spent two years working with the Kitasoo Xai’ Xais in Klemtu, more than 350 miles north of Cortes and Quadra Islands.

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First Nations leader celebrates evolution of stewardship in Great Bear Rainforest

A model for environmental protection may become much more.

Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

There are new measures to better protect bear and fish habitat in the globe’s largest remaining coastal temperate rainforest, thanks to First Nations’ increasing role in stewarding the Great Bear Rainforest (GBR).

The new protections resulted from the latest five-year review of an agreement between the B.C. Ministry of Forests and two First Nations alliances — Coastal First Nations and Nanwakolas Council — which represent 11 of the 26 Nations with territory in the rainforest.

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New federal funding buoys First Nations’ efforts to protect Great Bear Sea

National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Coastal First Nations striving to protect to B.C.’s Great Bear Sea got a boost after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently announced $800 million in funding for Indigenous-led conservation projects.

Spread over seven years, the funding will support projects in B.C., Ontario, Nunavut and the Northwest Territories and is expected to protect a total of one million square kilometres, said Trudeau. The prime minister made the announcement at the global United Nations biodiversity conference, known as COP15, underway in Montreal. 

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BC Greens push for provincewide protection for bear den ‘nurseries’

Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The BC Green Party has tabled legislation to uniformly protect bear dens, which double as winter nurseries, across the province. 

Adam Olsen, Green MLA for Saanich North and the Islands, said the party’s private member’s bill is timely with bears bulking up before their winter hibernation — a critical period for pregnant sows, which give birth to their cubs in the safety of their dens. 

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Conservationists urge B.C. to protect bear dens ‘before it’s too late’

Click here for ‘The need to protect Black Bear dens on Vancouver Island

National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The photo of a baby black bear scrabbling around the woody debris of its destroyed den is certainly heart-rending, conservation biologist Tony Hamilton says.

The former large carnivore specialist with B.C.’s Environment Ministry recalls being called to attend the incident, despite it occurring more than a decade ago. 

A mother and her cub were displaced from their nest in a huge, old stump that had been destroyed during logging operations in a second-growth forest on Vancouver Island near Campbell River.   

Continue reading Conservationists urge B.C. to protect bear dens ‘before it’s too late’