CKISS year in review: A snapshot of our 2020 supporters & programs.

There is no better time than the New Year to reminisce on the past (bizarre) year. Thank you to everyone that has helped support CKISS in 2020.  We have put together a photo album to highlight some of the work that was accomplished in 2020 due to the support from our funders.

Aquatic Invasive Species Program

While invasive zebra and quagga mussels (ZQM) have not been found in B.C. to date, they remain a major threat to our waters. Thanks to funding from Columbia Power, CKISS conducts ZQM monitoring to ensure early detection of any new infestations in local waterbodies. #ProtectOurWaters #CDD
In 2020 we collected 270 plankton samples from nine waterbodies, all samples have tested negative! CKISS acknowledges its funders, the B.C. Ministry of Environment & Climate Change Strategy and the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation. The CKISS 2020 mussel-monitoring would not be possible without your support!
CKISS and the Okanagan Nation Alliance partnered in 2020 to conduct zebra and quagga (ZQM) mussel monitoring in #Kootenay waterbodies. IF ZQM are detected in an aquatic system, response efforts must begin swiftly! These mussels have caused considerable damage to hydropower stations and municipal water supplies in other provinces. The mussels can also have impacts on biodiversity, water quality, recreation, fisheries and species at risk.
In addition, we want to thank the ONA for partnering with us on their invasive pike suppression program. #ProtectOurWaters #CleanDrainDry
American Bullfrogs are voracious predators that eats anything that fits into its mouth! Bullfrogs prey on, out-compete, native frog species, including the endangered Northern Leopard Frog. Northern Leopard Frog Preservation American Bullfrog Control was managed and delivered with financial support from the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program. #DontLetItLoose
#AmericanBullfrog monitoring and control was made possible with support from Columbia Basin Trust. Good news! The bullfrog team has continued to see a reduction in the population density and distribution from last year. There have not been any observed sites with emerging tadpoles, indicating 2019 efforts successfully prevented breeding. #DontLetItLoose

Education & Outreach Program

With the help of community and youth volunteers a targeted areas at Beaver Creek and Summit Lake previously dominated by invasive plants were replanted with over 300 native species. The goal of the project is to improve the habitat for wildlife that call the areas home. Thank you to BC Parks for funding this work.
Sending gratitude to the @Regional District of Central Kootenay for supporting 2020 Community Weed Pull Events. During these events a group of volunteers removes an invasive plant infestation in their community. Volunteers gain hands-on learning experience on invasive plant management, plant ecology, proper removal and disposal techniques.
In 2020 we planted over 600 native species at local restoration sites. This project was undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada through the federal Department Environment and Climate Change.
Youth field trips, new #CleanDrainDry signs and a travelling outreach booth are just a few of the educational activities that happened in 2020. A big thanks to the Government of British Columbia for supporting the 2020 CKISS Education Program
A BIG thank you to @Columbia Basin Trust for supporting our Education Program in 2020! Prevention is key for managing invasive species. This is accomplished through a variety of education and outreach activities.

Some new outreach tools for CKISS in 2020 were: a webinar series for home gardeners, a new YouTube Channel and an iNaturalist invasive species guide for the #Kootenay region. While adhering to Covid-19 safety protocols we conducted face to face interactions with people at our outreach booth, workshops, youth field trips, weed pull events and presentations. We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Province of BC though the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Operations and Rural Development.

Invasive Plant Management Program

In 2020 CKISS partnered with Fortis BC Electric to survey and treat invasive plants along power lines in the Kootenay region.
We here at CKISS use well-researched protocols and best management practices to prevent, eradicate, contain or suppress invasive plant infestations. In #2020 Invasive plant management took place in the Central #Kootenay region thanks to support from Columbia Power.
We have conducted a full field season of plant inventories, surveys, control and monitoring of key invasive species in the Central Kootenay region. Despite the ongoing global Covid-19 pandemic, the CKISS team were able to put safety protocols in place that allowed invasive species fieldwork to go ahead in 2020. Thank you to the BC Wildlife Federation for supporting CKISS in 2020!
Thanks to support from BC Parks we were able to survey, monitor and control invasive plants at a variety of provincial parks in 2020. We want to protect BC Parks because they play a critical role in the lives of British Columbians and wildlife.
Thank you to BC hydro for supporting invasive plant control along power lines in the Central Kootenay region in 2020!

Why do invasive plants need to be managed? Invasive plants such can become well established because they lack natural predators or controls. These introduced species spread quickly and out-compete native vegetation, which reduces biodiversity and affects fragile ecosystems, recreation opportunities, and the economy. Thanks to support from @FortisBC Energy we were able to protect the #Kootenays from the harmful impacts of invasive plants.
Thanks to the Kootenay Lake Local Conservation Fund and the Regional District of Central Kootenay, residents of Area A, D and E could access a cost-sharing program to control knotweed on their property in 2020! This is good news since property values are impacted by knotweed. The invasive plant will invade gardens and has the ability grow through cement structures including foundations.
CKISS coordinated 25 invasive plant management projects in the CKISS region in 2020! We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Province of British Columbia through the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
An example of the type of work that is funded by B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation is installing ‘No Mow” signs adjacent to knotweed infestations along major roadways through out the Central and West Kootenays. The bright yellow signs act as a reminder to maintenance contractors conducting mowing along roadways to lift their blades and not mow the invasive plant since it can spread through fragmentation.
Invasive species can lower biodiversity and damage wildlife habitat. Thanks to funding from the Nature Conservancy of Canada we were able to coordinate invasive species management programs in 2020 . This work will help minimize invasive plant impacts and encourage a healthy native plant population.
Nelson is known for it’s stunning beauty, restored heritage buildings, endless recreational activities and community spirit. Kudos to the City of Nelson for taking the right steps to protect the municipality against the harmful impacts of invasive plants. In 2020 CKISS partnered with the City of Nelson to coordinate invasive plant control on high priority species..
In 2020 CKISS led invasive plant management efforts at the Carroll Creek Conservation Property. The Nature Trust of British Columbia has been protecting and conserving land in BC since 1971 and we applaud their efforts!
This past year CKISS coordinated invasive species control work at landfill and transfer stations within the RDCK area. It is important to control species at these sites to prevent spread to other areas.
Thanks to support from the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary residents in Area A could access funds and information to fight noxious plants on their properties.
We salute the efforts of Sullivan Stone for managing invasive plants at the Sirdar Gravel Pit. When invasive plants contaminate gravel pits chances are plant parts and seeds can be transported and create new infestations.

We want to thanks the Village of Warfield for partnering with CKISS in 2020! We worked with the Village to complete an invasive plant inventory and develop a management strategy.

Wage Subsidy Shout Out

Thanks to funding from EcoCanada, two up-and-coming environmental professionals gained work experience and contributed to amphibian conservation and invasive plant management while working for CKISS this summer.