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February 2023 eNewsletter
Issue no. 175


Who We Are:
We are a diverse group of individuals with a passion for nature and the beautiful landscapes in the Crowsnest Pass and surrounding area. We share a strong conservation ethic and a desire to integrate this into the mainstream of our community. We are active in undertaking and supporting programs that preserve, protect and enhance nature and the landscapes we cherish, while ensuring a vibrant growing community. We are a registered charitable organization.

To learn more about Crowsnest Conservation and to support our work, visit our webpage here.
To sign-up for our monthly eNews, click here.

Nothing scheduled at this time.

Events by other organizations in the region


February 8, 7pm - The Story of Birds

Event by: Nature Alberta

Edmonton-based naturalist Nick Carter takes us on a journey into the past to discover where birds came from and how we know. Along the way, he’ll highlight important scientists and discoveries from right here in Alberta. Register to receive Zoom link at


February 17-20 - The Great Backyard Bird Count

Participants can share their observations for as little as 15 minutes over the 4 days or as long as they want. Last year 384,641 participants in 192 countries identified 7099 species, providing a snap shot of where birds were around the world. Participating is easy, fun to do alone or with others, and can be done anywhere you find birds.


March 7-8, 2023 - AGM and conference, Old College, Alberta

Event by: Alberta Invasive Species Council

A variety of sessions focused on invasive species as well as certified pesticide applicator credits will be offered. 


March 10-12, Calgary - Where the Wild Things Meet

Event by: Alberta Chapter of the Wildlife Society Conference

To register, visit

Crowsnest Pass News


CNP Golf Club wants ‘fair’ water bill

Crowsnest Pass Golf Club has asked municipal council to negotiate a “fair rate” for its water utilities, with club-president Hal Nummi claiming that the new fees unduly burden heavy users and non-profit recreation.


Provincial government should release snowpack contamination data, say experts, advocates

A government report released in November showed Window Mountain Lake had been contaminated with coal dust from B.C.’s Elk Valley mines. The lake, which sits north of Crowsnest Pass, was as polluted as bodies of water downwind from the oil sands. Calls are being made to release the data.

Provincial News


Thousands of kilometers of undocumented unmanaged trails found in Alberta & B.C.

New research lays foundation for deeper look into recreation and planning.


How a former ski hill has become an important key to climate study

Virtually every snowflake that falls on Fortress Mountain in the Kananaskis region is recorded and watched.


What caused Alberta’s record quake?

A cluster of tremors, including the largest recorded earthquake in Alberta’s history, may have been due to oil and gas activity in the region.

In the Media



Cowboys and conservation: the battle for the Eastern Slopes

The fight to stop new coal mines in this iconic Alberta landscape is far from over.


B.C. rejects open pit mine over threat to caribou

The rejection of the Sukunka coal mine over impacts to the dwindling Quintette herd has some observers wondering if B.C. is course-correcting when it comes to creatures at risk of extinction.




Logging is an imminent in area home to threatened bison herd

A group of Indigenous Elders, Knowledge Keepers and trappers has been pushing for more protection for the Wabasca herd - which is down to as few as nine bins. With logging set to start nearby, the herd is at risk of being totally eliminated.



Oilsands execs say a ‘just transition’ isn’t a worry - it’s their next big ‘boom’

The CEO’s of some of the biggest oilsands companies in Alberta say transitioning their workforce for a net-zero emissions future isn’t about cutting jobs, it’s about creating them.


Conservation groups oppose oilsands mining project on northern Alberta wetland

AER approved Suncor’s plan that would have a footprint impacting about half of McClelland Lake wetland.


Concentrated sunlight puts cheap solar hydrogen within reach

Engineers have made a device one-hundredth the size of previous solar-to-hydrogen devices that is over three times more efficient.



Overwhelming crush of cars prompts Parks Canada to close Banff’s Moraine Lake to personal vehicles

Parks Canada says the inundation of traffic surpasses the area’s capacity and disruptive to wildlife and dangerous to both the natural environment and people managing it.


Eco groups support ‘difficult decision’ to buy out Jasper Park’s Tonquin Valley leases

Three conservation organizations are supporting Parks Canada’s ‘difficult decision’ to buy out two backcountry outfitters with the best interests of caribou in mind.


Iconic Alberta and BC national parks to get infrastructure upgrades

$71 million in federal funding for Banff, Jasper, Yoho and Kootenay national parks includes upgrades to critical infrastructure.



Recreational trail network connecting Alberts/Elk Valley to Columbia Valley proposed

Plans are being drawn up for an off-road vehicle (ORV) and multi-use recreation trails between Coleman, Elkford and Canal Flats stretching to Columbia Valley on logging roads.




Climate change causing more frequent warm weather temperatures

Climate change is causing mild winter temperatures to become more frequent across the country, one extreme weather expert says.


Is uncertainty now our friend in the climate fight?

The same uncertainty that once held back renewable energy and climate action may now start to hinder fossil fuels.



Nano-wizardly makes wood a green electricity source

With a simple one-step treatment that changes the nanostructure of wood, researchers have boosted the electricity it produces when wet enough to light up LEDs and even laptops.


New York becomes the sixth state to legalize green burial options with human composting

American effort to legalize the green burial alternative known as human composting or “natural organic reduction” is welcoming N.Y. into the fold.



Bears were mysteriously missing toes. Scientists cracked the case.

A Canadian biologist went on a half-decade quest to solve the mystery of the missing grizzly digits.


Rare attack in Alaska renews interest in polar bear patrols

For isolated communities in the north, keeping the planet’s largest land predators out of town is key to coexistence.



Cochrane Ecological Institute resolves court case with Alberta Environment

After months of legal wrangling, disagreements, letters, emails and phone calls with Alberta wildlife department officials, the CEI gained a bit of closure in December.


Species cross paths more often where humans dwell

Scientists dub it the compression hypothesis, a phenomenon that could have implications for everything from animal reproduction to the spread of diseases.


Slugs and bugs are worth saving too, conservationists say

Folks may find slimy, slithery, creepy creatures repulsive, but reptiles, insects, and mollusks make up nearly a third of Canada’s species at risk and need their fair share of the conservation spotlight.




Water level woes threaten Great Lakes freshwater system

Climate modeling predicts a future with less stable water levels along the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River, threatening the industries and ecosystems that rely on them.


Family’s lead-contaminated water well near gravel mine under investigation

Alberta Environment is investigating how a family’s water well near a gravel mine became so contaminated by lead it’s no longer drinkable. The investigation comes as Red Deer County considers expanding mine operations.


Toilet paper toxin, chemicals found inside endangered B.C. orcas

Many of the chemicals found inside the mammals are banned in Canada.



World’s heaviest birds might be self-medicating

Great bustards seek out plants that contain compounds that can kill pathogens.


Harsh mountain winters have made chickadees smarter

A decade of research has revealed how the cognitive abilities of chickadees are shaped by their surroundings.

Thank you to Raymond Toal and Joni MacFarlane for the use of their images.

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Contact Information - Crowsnest Conservation Society
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P.O. Box 242, Crowsnest Pass, AB, T0K 0E0

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