Sunday, October 16, 2016

Chilcotin Holidays

Wildlife Sighting Forms

Chilcotin Holidays is in a partnership with the Wilderness Stewardship Foundation (WSF), providing them with valuable information about the area. The wildlife sighting forms are one of the collaborations between Chilcotin Holidays and WSF. The forms were created in 1995 (?) by biologist Doug Jury and have been continued ever since. The forms are taken on every trip outside the ranch to provide information about the wildlife distribution in and around the South Chilcotin Mountains Park. The forms include nine columns to fill out. First, observer, month and year need to be stated. Then on which date the observation happened. On the sighting forms we don't just record sightings but also signs like tracks or rubbed trees. Location, species and amount of individuals are other important components of the form to be filled out. If it was a sighting, sex, age and markings need to be described of possible and if it was just a sign it needs to be stated what type of sign it was. The other columns include habitat and behavior, time and weather and additional comments.

On a five day pack trip which I could join we encountered a plethora of wildlife including two Mountain Goats, multiple grouse with babies, one buck and several marmots. So in the evening we would try to fill out the forms as detailed as possible stating that we saw 4 marmots when riding on Windy Pass, digging their holes and eating. The weather conditions were windy and the time was between 12 pm and 2 pm.

So far WSF has information on wildlife distribution dating back to 1995 (?). This information can be used to assess and monitor populations and manage them accordingly. It is also useful to understand what habitats are used abundantly and which are avoided. All the forms are kept in the WSF office on the Ranch together with all the other forms concerning the environment. Together with the sighting forms the guides also collect Grizzly bear hair and note it on the form. The hair will be sent to biologists to analyze. With the forms, stewardship efforts made by the WSF can be adjusted to the current wildlife population situations.

Chilcotin Holidays

About Chilcotin Holidays

We are a licensed guide outfitter and we conduct guided wilderness adventures throughout our 5,000 square km operating area. This guide area has been operational since 1880, making it the oldest in British Columbia. More about us HERE.

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