Protecting Endangered Species on Private Property

Conservation Options for Species at Risk on Small Private Lots October 2008 The Salt Spring Island Conservancy recently asked ELC student Colin Edstrom to research ways to protect the endangered Sharp-tailed Snake on Salt Spring Island. Colin has now produced a report that may help other groups faced with the challenge of protecting endangered species that range across numerous small adjacent private lots. “The problem is that 18 of the 19 known Sharp-tailed Snake locations on Saltspring Island occur on small private properties. This makes it difficult to use a traditional conservation covenant to protect such snakes,” says Edstrom. Placing a conservation covenant on a single property can be costly to both landowner and land conservancy. This economic problem is compounded by the lack of information about the movements and exact range of Sharp-tailed Snakes. Covenanting a single lot may not be useful if the snakes move to the immediately adjacent property. In his report, Colin canvasses potential methods for reducing costs of placing covenants on land in such situations, and circumstances where placing covenants might be practical. He also describes local government laws that could increase protection for endangered species. Finally, he discusses private stewardship approaches that could be useful.

Link to the report: Conservation Options for Species at Risk on Small Private Lots