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Jul
5
Operation Burrowing Owl Celebrates 30 Years of Conservation!

 

Regina, SK – July 5, 2017 – 2017 marks 30 years of Burrowing Owl conservation in the province! Nature Saskatchewan’s Operation Burrowing Owl, a voluntary stewardship program, launched in 1987 by Nature Saskatchewan, the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation, World Wildlife Fund Canada, Wildlife Habitat Canada, and Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment. Public awareness increased by the presence of Prince Philip at the initiation of Operation Burrowing Owl (he was the president of the World Wildlife Fund at the time), which led to increasing public concern and desire for the protection of the species. Today, it is one of the longest running voluntary stewardship program in Canada.

Operation Burrowing Owl forms a partnership with landowners/land managers who voluntarily agree to conserve habitat for the endangered Burrowing Owl and other prairie wildlife. Today, almost 360 Saskatchewan landowners/land managers participate in the program. Together, they are conserving approximately 140,000 acres of habitat in pastures and other lands, while farming or ranching on their land as they have for generations. “Operation Burrowing Owl would not exist without the voluntary efforts of our Saskatchewan ranchers and farmers,” says Kaytlyn Burrows, Habitat Stewardship Coordinator with Nature Saskatchewan.

“In addition to habitat conservation, these landowners annually report the number of owls on their land,” says Burrows. Operation Burrowing Owl records owl sightings to help determine the population trend and distribution of the Burrowing Owl throughout Saskatchewan. The information can then be used towards efforts to restore the population. Any information given is never shared without the landowner’s permission.

Thanks to our dedicated participants, we look forward to the next 30 years of Operation Burrowing Owl and continuing to promote the Burrowing Owl as a well-known symbol of prairie conservation for generations to come in Saskatchewan!

Be sure be sure to visit our website www.naturesask.ca and follow Nature Saskatchewan on Twitter and Facebook for program highlights, special 30th anniversary merchandise (proceeds going directly back to Operation Burrowing Owl programming) and to help us celebrate 30 years of conservation success!

 

For further information please contact Nature Saskatchewan (English only):

 

Kaytlyn Burrows (306) 780-9833, email obo@naturesask.ca
Habitat Stewardship Coordinator

Rebecca Magnus (306) 780-9270, email rmagnus@naturesask.ca
Acting Species at Risk Manager

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