Conservation agreement on Portage Creek property will safeguard bird habitat

Hundreds of different bird species will be able to rely on a huge natural space remaining available to them in Manitoba.

The Nature Conservancy of Canada announced Friday it is working with Cal and Elaine Cuthbert, owners of a property at Portage Creek near Portage la Prairie Man., to safeguard the land with a conservation agreement.

“We’re going to partner so that those lands are conserved forever; the amazing habitats, the creek itself and all the species that come with it,” said Cary Hamel, Nature Conservancy of Canada director of conservation in Manitoba.

The property is 31 acres in size and has at least 220 different species of birds, acting as a migration corridor.

“It has some beautiful forest on it, almost primordial, kind of untouched for generations, just crawling with birdlife in the spring with migration,” Hamel said.

The Cuthbert family has owned the property since 1884, and wants to ensure it stays pristine.

Hamel said during the pandemic, more families have been reaching out to find out about conservation agreements.

“People are really more than ever connected to their own properties, their own yards, and the nature around them,” he said. “And they're thinking more and more about the future of human health and natural health and how we're all connected with nature.

“And I'd say it's a growth industry in nature conservation, we're getting a lot of calls, and it's really nice to see these are people that want to donate land or donate these agreements and just keep it around for future generations.”

More information about conservation agreements can be found online.