Restoring Wildlife Habitat at the Salmon River Conservation Area

Project Year: 2016-2017

View Provincial Database Record

Shawn Lukas with VICLMP Photo: Karen Barry

Project Lead

The Nature Trust of British Columbia


Coastal Region


Project Type

Habitat-Based Actions

FWCP Contribution


Action Plan Alignment

Campbell Riparian Wetlands Action Plan

Project ID


700 trees and shrubs planted

More than 700 native trees and shrubs were recently planted on a conservation property on Vancouver Island in a two-hectare area, once overrun with invasive Scotch Broom. Native aquatic plants were also planted with the goal of restoring adjacent wetland and riparian habitat.

The work was spearheaded by The Vancouver Island Conservation Land Management Program on a new conservation property in the Salmon River Estuary Conservation Area, near Sayward. This conservation area was purchased by The Nature Trust of British Columbia, with FWCP funding support in 2015, to help address impacts from BC Hydro dams in the Campbell River watershed.

Restoring Wildlife Habitat: Salmon River Conservation Area

In 2015, with support from FWCP and others, The Nature Trust of BC purchased property on the lower Salmon River as an addition to the Salmon River Estuary Conservation Area. The goal of this project is to restore riparian and wetland habitats on this new conservation land, and inventory species-at-risk. This project will improve habitat for breeding, migrating, and overwintering birds, amphibians, mammals and salmon.

This project will:

  1. enhance two artificial ponds for Red-Legged Frog,
  2. restore the riparian zone along Salmon River,
  3. remove invasive plants and replant with native species, and
  4. inventory breeding birds and install nestboxes for Screech-Owls.

This work will improve the productivity of riparian and wetland habitats in the Salmon River system to offset impacts from hydroelectric projects.

Final Report: Executive Summary

The Salmon River estuary is a significant area of coastal wetland habitat located on a relatively steep and rugged 250km stretch of coastline from Campbell River to the network of estuaries on the Quatsino lowlands of Vancouver Island. This strategic location has made the Salmon River an important stopping point for migrating waterfowl, shorebirds, and passerines and provides significant habitat to several fish and mammal species. Since 1978, in recognition of these exceptional fish and wildlife values, The Nature Trust of British Columbia (TNTBC) and its partners in the Pacific Estuary Conservation Program have been actively securing habitat in the Salmon River Estuary. In 2015, with support from FWCP and others, TNTBC purchased 165 acres near the lower Salmon River as an addition to the Salmon River Estuary Conservation Area. This complements 257 acres secured since 1978. The new property contains a diverse mix of habitats including riparian, wetland, and forest. However, some areas on this new conservation property have been previously impacted by logging and other anthropogenic activities.

The goal of this 1- year project was to restore wetland, riparian and upland habitats at the newly acquired conservation land, and to inventory species at risk. This project was coordinated by the Vancouver Island Conservation Land Management Program (VICLMP) which is an innovative strategic partnership program involving the management of over 100 conservation areas –mostly coastal wetlands and estuaries– on Vancouver Island, and central and north coasts.

Click the provincial database link below to read the full final report for this project.

View more about this project on the provincial database