The Province has designated 503 hectares of river and riparian habitat along the Stellako River as a wildlife management area, announced Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson.
The area, near Fraser Lake, includes two properties owned by The Nature Trust of British Columbia and leased to the ministry for the long-term. The Stellako River is one of the top rainbow trout river fisheries in B.C. and is also used by chinook and sockeye salmon. The river mouth at Fraser Lake is also important to red-listed Nechako white sturgeon.
Designation as a wildlife management area under the Wildlife Act prioritizes conservation and management of wildlife, fish and their habitats. Other permitted land uses can be identified in an area management plan developed in consultation with conservation groups and other stakeholders. The designation also allows the ministry to make regulations to better manage the wildlife area.
Ralph Roy, director, Electoral Area D, Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako -
"The Stellako River is one of our region's many special features. The designation of the Stellako River corridor as a wildlife management area reflects its value as wildlife habitat, and as a destination for sport fishing and other recreation opportunities."
"We look forward to working with the Province to ensure that conservation objectives and management strategies are tailored to the specific needs of local residents."
Doug Walker, CEO, The Nature Trust of BC -
"The Nature Trust acquired key land along the Stellako River in the early 1980s to complement conservation of an eight-km Crown land wildlife corridor. We are delighted that this land will become part of the new WMA."
"As The Nature Trust celebrates our 40th anniversary this year, we look forward to working with many partners including the ministry, First Nations and community groups on conserving the Stellako River now and in the future."
Dr. Winifred Kessler, chair, Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation -
"We congratulate the ministry on its decision to designate this area as a wildlife management area. The foundation invested in the original acquisition of these lands, and WMA status will provide greater certainty that the site will be managed with a high priority on fish, wildlife and habitat values."
- B.C. now has 28 officially designated wildlife management areas
- B.C.'s wildlife management areas range in size the 17-hectare Coquitlam River WMA in the Lower Mainland, to the 122,787-hectare Todagin WMA in the North.
- Approximately 235,000 hectares in the province are presently designated as WMAs.
To learn more about the significance of designated wildlife management areas in B.C, visit:
Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations