Watershed Watch has joined a new province-wide coalition of 25 organizations, all sharing common concerns about the decline of fish, wildlife, and habitat. The Fish, Wildlife, and Habitat Coalition, representing more than 273,000 British Columbians and more than 900 businesses, includes environmental and conservation organizations, hunting and angling guides, wildlife viewing, ecotourism, naturalists, hunters, anglers, and trappers. Together, the group is seeking a commitment from the province to invest in healthy landscapes, waters, and fish and wildlife stewardship, in partnership with First Nations and communities. The Fish, Wildlife, and Habitat Coalition recognizes and respects the constitutionally protected rights of Indigenous peoples and the collective commitment to advancing reconciliation.
British Columbia is known all over the world for its biodiversity and wild landscapes. However, a lack of investment in fish, wildlife, and habitat management, combined with the impacts of resource extraction and a growing human population has severely reduced the number of species and reduced the landscapes’ ability to sustain abundant fish and wildlife. B.C.’s mountains, rivers, lakes and forests are suffering from decades of mismanagement and unsustainable use. We now have several red-listed species, record low salmon and moose populations, and declining mountain sheep and mule deer populations in parts of the province. This scarcity of fish and wildlife has increased social conflict and threatens food security and tourism-related jobs.
The Fish, Wildlife, and Habitat Coalition will work to promote solutions guided by science and Traditional Ecological Knowledge for improved management of species and habitat in B.C. These will include:
- Creating legislation that protects fish, wildlife, and habitat;
- Integrating the needs of fish, wildlife, and habitat into new and existing legislation;
- Increasing funding and creating a new governance model for fish, wildlife, and habitat management.
By championing solutions for conservation including management, restoration, and protection, the coalition aims to help B.C. strengthen its communities and economy. These outcomes will be based on healthy and resilient ecosystems and abundant fish and wildlife with self-sustaining populations.
Members of the Fish, Wildlife and Habitat Coalition:
- Backcountry Hunters and Anglers British Columbia
- BC Federation of Fly Fishers
- BC Fishing Tourism Association
- BC Trappers Association
- B.C. Wildlife Federation
- Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society – BC Chapter
- Fraser Valley Angling Guides Association
- Fraser Valley Salmon Society
- Georgia Strait Alliance
- Commercial Bear Viewing Association of BC
- Coast to Cascades Grizzly Bear Initiative
- British Columbia Federation of Drift Fishers
- Ducks Unlimited Canada
- Guide Outfitters Association of British Columbia
- Outdoor Recreation Council of BC
- Hunters for BC – SCI
- The Steelhead Society of BC
- Traditional Bowhunters British Columbia
- United Bowhunters
- Watershed Watch Salmon Society
- Wild Sheep Society of British Columbia
- Wilderness Tourism Association of BC
- Wildlife Stewardship Council
- Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative
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