Naturalization Plantings in Twin Brooks District & Nature Park

Harry Stelfox has organized some naturalization plantings (primarily native trees and shrubs) to create a better transition zone between the man-made Twin Brooks District Park and the lower Blackmud Creek Ravine. On the mornings of May 30 and 31, Grade 5 and 6 students from the local school will be planting 6 small areas. He is looking for a handful of ‘knowledgeable’ volunteers to help oversee the student’s effort; if you might be interested in helping out and encouraging the students in this type of activity, please contact Harry at hstelfox@telus.net.

Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration

After more than 75 years of managing fragile grasslands as productive rangelands for livestock grazing, the federal government announced in the spring of 2012 that it was transferring control of the Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration (PFRA) pastures back to the provinces. This was done with no public consultation and little advance warning. In Saskatchewan the PFRA lands comprise 62 pastures totaling 1.8 million acres. The Saskatchewan government has announced it plans to sell or lease the land to farmers and ranchers who have been grazing livestock on the pastures. However, many patrons have indicated they are not in a position to buy the pastures. The Province has also said that it does not want to manage the pastures.

Preservation of the natural landscapes and ecology of the pastures is important at a World level. They contain the largest contiguous blocks of original prairie grasslands in the Northern Great Plains and are essential for maintaining prairie biodiversity, including the 32 species at risk found in 55 of the pastures. The pastures are also important for locally-owned livestock operations; hunting; nature hikes; archeological heritage, sacred and ceremonial First Nations sites; tourism; and scientific study and in preserving the traditions of working cowboys and ranching communities.