This weekend, the Globe and Mail has run a three-part series on the PFRA community pasture issue in Saskatchewan, by Trevor Herriot.
Why is Ottawa abandoning swaths of prairie grassland? “As rare and ecologically important as coastal old-growth forest, the PFRA grasslands are listed by the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) as lands that Canada has made a commitment to protect. The federal government abandoned that commitment when it discontinued the PFRA.”
Range rider is a cowboy conservationist profiles community pasture manager Mert Taylor. “‘We are there to manage resources that belong to the citizens of Canada so that they will be there for future generations,’ he says.
Why can’t the owners of the cattle do the job?
‘The patrons we serve often live miles away from the pastures,” Mr. Taylor says, “and, besides, they have a lot of other concerns that keep them busy in the grazing season. … The bottom-line pressures of needing to get more income from their herd are always going to drive their decisions.
‘For us, it’s different. The health of the grass, the wildlife and livestock is our full-time job. We look at the longer term.'”
And a photo gallery of the prairies.
Closer to home, the Meadow Lake Progress highlights PPPI’s concerns: