DUCKS UNLIMITED CANADA PARTNERS WITH THE SQUAMISH-LILLOOET REGIONAL DISTRICT AND THE NATURE TRUST TO PURCHASE PEMBERTON PROPERTY
67 acres of wetland habitat to be protected for conservation and community enjoyment
Pemberton, British Columbia – Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC), along with the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (SLRD) and The Nature Trust of British Columbia, are proud to announce the purchase of 67 acres of critical wetland habitat in Electoral Area C of the SLRD, near Pemberton, B.C. The property has been purchased from the Fulton family at fair market value and will be protected for conservation and community use.
“We are very pleased to have been included in this project with our partners and the Fulton family,” says Brad Arner, manager of provincial operations for British Columbia, DUC. “This land includes diverse wetland and riparian habitat and being able to secure it for conservation is vital to maintaining important waterfowl habitat and breeding grounds. It’s also a great way to connect with the community by engaging local organizations and volunteers.”
The Pemberton area wetlands and riparian areas have long been recognized by conservation organizations for their significant fish and wildlife values. Having owned the property since 1962, the Fulton family was only interested in selling the property specifically for conservation and community enjoyment.
“Given our deep interest in the environment, our family felt that the best possible use of the land would be to keep it as an ecological preserve, as the largest untouched wetlands in the Pemberton Valley,” says Barbara Fulton. “It will now remain an intact, natural ecosystem for everyone to enjoy. We are extremely pleased that Ducks Unlimited Canada, the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District, the Nature Trust of B.C. and the local community had the foresight, will, and optimism to protect this unique property for future generations. Our family had many happy times there and we’re thrilled that the property is in such good hands.”
Prior to its purchase, the land was potentially threatened by development due to Pemberton’s continued growth. A portion of the land was used for farming many decades ago, but has since reverted back to natural marshlands. With the acquisition, this area will remain as natural habitat and will be managed in cooperation with the SLRD.
“We’re delighted to be a part of securing such an incredible asset for the community,” says Susie Gimse, director of Electoral Area C and chair of the SLRD. “It’s a beautiful, serene and yet accessible place with existing trails that people can use to get out and enjoy nature. This property will be an enduring legacy that ensures not only biodiversity, but recreational diversity for the Pemberton area.”
This project was funded in part by the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program (FWCP) on behalf of its program partners BC Hydro, the Province of B.C. and Fisheries and Oceans Canada who work together to conserve and enhance fish and wildlife impacted by the construction of BC Hydro dams.
“It takes a community of people to make good things happen like the acquisition of the Fulton property in the Pemberton area adjacent to the Lillooet River. The acquisition of 67 acres of critical wetland habitat conserving the property’s biodiversity values for the enjoyment of the public in perpetuity has taken several years. We applaud all involved in this acquisition for maintaining their commitment until all the funds could be secured,” said Marian Adair, acting CEO of The Nature Trust.
The Nature Trust of British Columbia is a leading non profit land conservation organization dedicated to protecting B.C.’s natural diversity of plants and animals through the acquisition and conservation of critical habitats and other areas of ecological significance. Along with their partners, The Nature Trust has invested more than $70 million to secure over 61,000 hectares (150,000 acres) of critical habitat throughout British Columbia.
The Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (SLRD) is located in South Western BC and consists of 4 member municipalities (District of Squamish, Resort Municipality of Whistler, Village of Pemberton, and District of Lillooet) and 4 electoral areas. Headquartered in Pemberton, which is the approximate geographic centre of the region, the SLRD delivers a wide range of regional, sub-regional and local services to approximately 38,000 residents. For more information, please visit www.slrd.bc.ca.
Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) is the leader in wetland conservation. A registered charity, DUC partners with government, industry, non-profit organizations and landowners to conserve wetlands that are critical to waterfowl, wildlife and the environment. Learn more at ducks.ca.