Minister of Agriculture announces pilot project

Up to $1.55 million will be invested in funding a pilot project to protect B.C.’s commercial livestock from predators.

Minister of Agriculture and Lands Steve Thomson made the announcement at the Dawson Creek Fall Fair on Friday afternoon.

Thomson says the B.C. Wild Predator Loss Prevention Mitigation Pilot Program will receive the funding over three years through the Investment Agriculture Foundation of B.C., a not-for-profit organization that manages and distributes funds on behalf of the provincial and federal governments.

The pilot project’s goal is to protect B.C.’s commercial livestock sector from wildlife predators, while preserving natural predator-prey relationships. The pilot project will also look at prevention, mitigation, compensation, program delivery and management.

Thomson says the project will be easily accessible for everyone throughout the province. It will also provide industry with a protection plan for the future, to help the province protect the natural wildlife population in B.C.

Other recent support for the livestock sector in British Columbia includes more than $5.5 million provided to the BC Cattlemen’s Association for fencing-related components on Crown land, and the creation of the new ranching task force, to find ways government and industry can work together to develop a long-term plan for a more profitable, self-sustaining industry.