Cigarette Butts in Our Community, by the Fernie Secondary School Grade 8 Students

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On the 27th of May, the Grade 8’s of Fernie Secondary School picked up cigarette butts around town. The reason for this act was to help our town’s environment and water system by clearing the toxic butts. 

When you throw your butts on the ground they make their way through the Elk River and eventually to the Pacific Ocean after falling through storm drains. Studies have shown that a cigarette butt submerged in 1 liter of water can kill one fish because of the toxins in the butt. Cigarettes are extremely toxic; they contain things like gasoline, rat poison, and tar. The very harmful chemicals will cause cancer in humans as well as wildlife. We need to keep our butts off the ground by putting them in the provided ashtrays or garbage cans. ... Read more »

Kokanee Glacier Park Action Alert

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The public is invited to comment on a proposed heli-ski tenure on the borders of Kokanee Glacier Park, which would include the Lemon, Kokanee, West Kokanee, Sitkum, Enterprise and Crusader Creeks. Kokanee Glacier Park is a refuge for wildlife and wilderness. The park and surrounding area are home to mountain goats, wolverines and old growth cedar and hemlock forests. The area is a beloved place for quiet wilderness recreation. The proposed heli-ski operation would negatively affect wildlife and impact public non-motorized winter recreation opportunities. ... Read more »

Kitchen & Garden Workshop Series: A Bee Happy Garden Workshop

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The growing season is upon us and that means time to start amplifying the garden and using it's wonderful bounty! Back by popular demand is the Kitchen and Garden workshops offered by Wildsight Kimberley/Cranbrook and the Cranbrook Food Action Committee.

This first workshop of the season starts with A Bee Happy Garden Workshop on June 9th in Kimberley and June 11th in Cranbrook. The cost is $10 for members and $15 for non-members. The workshop will cover bee basics, how to attract bees to your garden, bee friendly plants, and how to build a native bee house. By the end you will have the knowledge to increase the amount of veggies in your garden by increasing the number of pollinators, and you will go home with a bee house you created!

For more info and to register click: ... Read more »

Remembering Ralph (1945-2015)

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Ralph Moore was one of East Kootenay Environmental Society's most ardent activists in the early days. He served on both the Creston Branch and Regional Boards. He never hesitated to take on the status quo and was always a strong voice defending Creston 's watershed, winning the admiration of friends and foes alike. Ralph was never one to go along with the crowd, and always backed up his opinions with a solid argument and an impish grin. ... Read more »

Work Bee Wednesday - Kimberley Open Gate Garden

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The Open Gate Garden is full of action this year as we develop this new initiative even more. Join us on Wednesday May 20th from 10am - 12pm as we get to work in a fun and inviting atmosphere. On Wednesday you can plan to:

- plant some plants and sow some seeds,
- work on the last bit of the willow weaving,
- make a wicking bed freezer for the garden just like the two we made in Cranbrook at the Wicked Raised Beds Workshop. If you missed the workshop in Cranbrook this is a great way to learn the technique.

We look forward to seeing you in the garden and if you have any questions or want to be added to the mailing list feel free to contact Dirk, our new Food Sustainability Coordinator at dirk@wildsight.ca or 250-427-9325 x 221 ... Read more »

Wild and Scenic Film Festival to Stop in Nelson!

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The Wild & Scenic Film Festival Tour is stopping in Nelson in June for a cinematic evening of stories set in wild landscapes around the world.

Join Wildsight for a journey to spectacular places and tales of adventures living life outside—all with a conservation mindset.The Wild & Scenic Film Festival, North America’s largest environmental film festival, will bring two hours of the beautiful, the exciting and the inspiring to Nelson’s Capitol Theatre on June 12 at 7:00pm, just in time to inspire your Kootenay summer adventures. ... Read more »

Graceful Grasslands: Focus on Restoration in the Rocky Mountain Trench

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The Rocky Mountain Trench runs from Montana in the south all the way up to the BC-Yukon border. Also known as the Valley of a Thousand Peaks, this sensitive ecosystem is often overshadowed by the towering mountains that surround it—the Rocky Mountain range on its the east side and the Columbia and Cassiar ranges on its west.

But the trench is special in its own right. And needs our attention. Animals like Bighorn Sheep, Lewis’s woodpecker, mule deer and red-listed species like the American Badger rely on its grasslands. Farmers and livestock producers depend on it. If you’ve ever gone for a spring walk in the trench, you will know that its beauty and ecological diversity are breathtaking. ... Read more »

The David Thompson Legacy Art Project

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Centre 64 invites the public to a slide presentation of the paintings, photographs and stories by Cranbrook artist, Joseph Cross, as he and Sharon, retraced the amazing journeys of the famous Canadian fur trader and surveyor, David Thompson, throughout our region. The results of Cross’s work is The David Thompson Legacy Art Project. This event, by donation, is being held Monday, May 4, 7-9 PM at Centre 64 in Kimberley. Funds collected will go to support the Symphony on the Mountain, and Wildsight Kimberley-Cranbrook branch.

Joseph will have at least one original painting on display from the series. Purchases of paintings or limited edition giclees as a result of this event, will result in a 10% donation made to the Symphony on the Mountain and Wildsight Kimberley-Cranbrook branch. ... Read more »

Environmental Assessment Office Determines Jumbo Glacier Resort in Non-compliance with Permit Condition

The Environmental Assessment Office (EAO) has issued a determination that Jumbo Glacier Resorts Ltd. is not compliant with the condition of its certificate that requires that ”…residential and commercial structures will be located completely outside the avalanche hazard area.”

After more than twenty years of controversy, Jumbo Glacier Resorts Ltd (GRL) must demonstrate that the project is “substantially started”. The Minister of Environment has yet to make this determination.

Autumn Cousins, EAO Manager of Compliance, stated in her correspondence with the would-be developers that “GRL must not resume construction at either the Day Lodge or Service Building Location for any purpose.” ... Read more »

It’s our turn to lead: kids across the Columbia Basin celebrate Earth Day 

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Celebrated around the world, Earth Day falls every year on April 22nd. It is a day to celebrate the earth, our home. The theme of this year’s Earth Day is “It’s Our Turn to Lead.” And the kids participating in Wildsight’s Beyond Recycling program have taken this to heart. 

Since the fall, they’ve been on a journey to discover the impact of their lifestyles—product choices, energy, waste and consumption—and how their everyday actions affect the health of the planet. ... Read more »

Only 1% of BC is in wildlife refuges: Environmental Coalition calls on BC Wildlife Federation to work with them to create more

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On the eve of the BC Wildlife Federation (BCWF) Annual General Meeting in Fernie, a coalition of environmental and conservation groups is calling on the BCWF to work with them to create a system of wildlife refuges to ensure healthy wildlife populations in BC for the benefit of all British Columbians, hunters and non-hunters alike. 

Wildlife refuges, or sanctuaries, are large areas of natural habitat where animals can breed and raise their young without being shot or trapped. By serving as source populations, they contribute to wider regional wildlife populations where hunting can occur outside of refuges. ... Read more »

Mother's Day Compost Workshop with Mike Dorian of Living Soils Solutions

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Sunday May 10th Cranbrook Public Produce Garden; For more information and to register click on: https://secure.wildsight.ca/civicrm/event/info?id=79&reset=1

12pm – 4pm; $10 for members, $15 for non-members

With spring in full swing and summer fast approaching, this is the time to get your hands dirty in a rich, nutrient-filled compost pile! Join Wildsight as we welcome Mike Dorian of Living Soils Solutions for this afternoon workshop based in the Cranbrook Public Produce Garden. ... Read more »

Work With Us! Wildsight Kimberley Cranbrook Seeks Food Sustainability Project Assistant

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Wildsight Kimberley/Cranbrook is an environmental not-for-profit organization focused on promoting environmentally sustainable communities in our region.

JOB RESPONSIBILITIES:
The Food Sustainability Project Assistant will work under the supervision of the Wildsight Kimberley Cranbrook Branch Manager, the Food Sustainability Coordinator, and the Kimberley Farmers’ Market Coordinator to successfully complete the following duties:
• Assist the Food Sustainability Coordinator with Kimberley Open Gate Garden tasks;
o Engaging community groups, volunteers, school groups, public, and visitors,
o Developing and maintaining garden beds and infrastructure as needed,
o Planning and delivering hands-on workshops. ... Read more »

Jumbo Resort “foundations” located in Avalanche Path, says new report

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Immediately prior to expiration of Jumbo Glacier Resort’s environmental approval, two small cement slabs were poured in an attempt to demonstrate that work on the proposed development was substantially started. These slabs apparently represent the day lodge and an additional service building. Currently, BC Environment Minister, Mary Polak, is making a decision as to whether the construction of the proposed $600 million dollar venture can be considered “substantially started.” Any development must meet conditions set out by the Environmental Assessment Certificate.  ... Read more »

Summer Wild Nature Tours in the Elk Valley Announced!

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Summer 2015 Wild Nature Tours in Fernie have just been announced! ... Read more »

April eNews: Earth Day Action and Inspiration

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Find out about upcoming events and read about Beyond Recycling, Earth Day, the Creston Community Forest, Take Back the Wild and Chaos in the Elk Vally in our April eNewsletter! 

Wildsight April eNewsletter

Chaos in the Elk Valley: Stand up for Balance

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The Elk Valley has long been known for its world class wildlife, clean water and vibrant fish populations. In more recent history, the Elk Valley has also become well known for its vast metallurgical coal resources—the five currently operating open pit coal mines are the second largest single source of metallurgical coal exports in the world.

Unfortunately, the Southern Rocky Mountain Management Plan, the region's guiding land use plan, does not seek to reconcile resource values and wildlife values. It explicitly states that Mining and Oil and Gas development take precedent over every other value on the land. ... Read more »

The Gift of Awe and Wonder

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I remember being 10 years old and going camping with my family. In the morning, we went on an interpretive walk with one of the park’s inspired naturalists. On the walk, we came across a group of painted turtles. I remember so clearly the absolute awe I felt in that moment. The feeling that there was so much to discover about nature and that an entire lifetime of learning could never bring me even close to discovering its depths. ... Read more »

Open Gate Garden Willow Weaving Work Bees

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April 18 & 19, 9am - noon

Spring has sprung and that means it’s time to get out and play in the garden together! The first organized effort of the season will be a fun opportunity to learn more about the art of weaving willow. We will be reinforcing the Garden’s defenses against the local ground squirrel population and beautifying the existing chain-link.

Goals:
Weave willow, dogwood & cottonwood branches around the lower perimeter of the Garden
Fill additional fence openings with woven recycled rubber
Decide on the first priorities for spring plantings

Preparations: ... Read more »

Registration Open: Wicked Raised Beds Workshop - Turning Repurposed Freezers Into Your Garden's New Best Friend

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Join Wildsight as we host Luke Kimmel of the Leaf Ninjas in these two, one day workshops offered in Cranbrook and Kimberley.

Cranbrook Register at https://secure.wildsight.ca/civicrm/event/info?reset=1&id=75
Where: Cranbrook Public Produce Garden
When: Saturday April 25th 2015 10am-4pm
Cost: $45

The Kimberley version of this workshop was cancelled due to low registration. Please sign up for the Cranbrook version above.

Wicking beds are a unique and increasingly popular way to grow vegetables. They are self-contained raised beds with built-in reservoirs that supply water from the bottom up – changing how, and how much, you water your beds. ... Read more »

2015 Wildsight Kimberley/Cranbrook Branch AGM

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You are invited to attend our AGM on Wednesday April 15th 2015! If you are interested in what has been happening at Wildsight Kim/Cran or perhaps would like to mingle with some great folks, this meeting and mingle is a great opportunity to do just that.

The evening will look like this:
7:00pm AGM agenda – Financials, Elections for Board of Directors, Summary of 2014 projects, Discussions
8:00pm or earlier depending on length of the AGM portion; mingle with snacks and beverages!

We will be hosting at the Wildsight Kimberley/Cranbrook office upstairs at 495 Wallinger Ave. Kimberley BC

We look forward to seeing you there!

Job Opportunity: Branch Manager and Fundraiser (Contract Position) Wildsight Elk Valley Branch

Wildsight Elk Valley Branch is a local not for profit organisation focused on protecting Biodiversity and encouraging sustainable communities in the Southern Rocky Mountain region of Canada.

We are seeking an experienced project manager and fundraiser to join our dedicated team of contractors and volunteer board of directors. This is a dynamic opportunity to build on existing programs and initiatives, explore enterprising non-profit agricultural potentials in the region, and make your mark on establishing an annual Wildsight solstice fundraising event.

The ideal candidate is self-motivated to attain milestone goals set by the board of directors, possess exceptional interpersonal skills, is passionate about the environment, and exudes a high level of confidence and creativity. ... Read more »

Celebrating Water and a Local Water Hero

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As Canadians celebrated Canada Water Week last week, and the world celebrated World Water Day, here at home, one of our local Kootenay residents was also celebrated. Nelson’s Heather Leschied—program manager for Wildsight’s Living Lakes Canada water team, one of the founders of the Lake Windermere Ambassadors and Friends of Kootenay Lake, fly-fisher, sailor-in-training and water advocate—was honoured as one of WWF Canada’s Water Heroes, and named a finalist for Water Canada’s Water’s Next Award. ... Read more »

Project Wild Thing - Special film night and Wildsight Invermere AGM on March 31

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Are kids these days disconnected from Nature? …… PROJECT WILD THING, a feature-length, often humorous, documentary addresses the increasingly fragile connection between children and nature, and will be shown at Wildsight Invermere's next event on Tuesday, March 31, at 7pm at the David Thompson Secondary School. A short (but fun!) AGM will precede the screening. Admission is by donation. For more information, please contact: 250-341-3554 or invermere@wildsight.ca
Check out http://projectwildthing.com

Creston Valley Bird Festival: Registration Open!

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Registration is now open for the Creston Valley Bird Festival!

This year, the Creston Valley Bird Festival will run from May 8-10 and will feature keynote speaker and well-known Okanagan bird biologist, Dick Cannings, as well as Marlene Machmer from Nelson speaking on herons, Brendan Mitchell of Creston on bats, and Gary Davidson from Nakusp displaying photographs of the birds of Africa. ... Read more »