Report Abstract


Yaqan Nuki Wetlands Rehabilitation Project Creston, BC


Yaqan Nuki Wetlands Friendship Society




The Yaqan Nuki Wetlands Friendship Society in co-operation with the Lower Kootenay Indian Band was formed in January 2003 for the purpose of rehabilitation and maintenance of wetlands located 6 km south of the town of Creston, east of the Kootenay River and south of the Goat River. This wetland mosaic forms a vital link between the Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area and the Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge (USA). In the 1970s Ducks Unlimited developed and installed the infrastructure on this 475ha wetland complex. Many wildlife species utilized these wetlands for breeding, resting, feeding and as a migrational stopover. To date 184 species of birds, 22 species of mammals and 9 species of reptiles and amphibians have been recorded within the boundaries of the Lower Kootenay Indian Band Lands.
With the funding partnership of Ducks Unlimited Canada, Fortis BC (Aquila) and the Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program the society has undertaken the responsibility of servicing, repairing and maintaining the pumps that will re-flood each of the five wetland compartments.
The presence of water in two re-flooded wetlands triggered an immediate response from wildlife species. A cow moose and cow elk were both observed with calves in the spring of 2004. Tundra and Trumpeter Swans as well as Greater White-fronted Geese, Canada Geese and many duck species refueled and rested during spring and fall migration. The Great Blue Heron, Black Tern and Sandhill Crane returned to the marshes to forage. Families of Pied-billed Grebes, Mallards,Wood Ducks and Common Goldeneyes were reared. The Red-winged Blackbird, Yellow-headed Blackbird, Marsh Wren, American Bittern, Sora, Virginia Rail and Common Yellowthroat all took up residence in the cattail marshes.
It is encouraging for society members to witness the renewed abundance of wildlife and to know that their volunteer effort along with financial support can make this difference.


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