Calgary Pheasants Forever paid its last installment of $50,000 for the purchase of the Chinook Property south of Irvine on Ross Creek. The property possesses excellent habitat for ring-necked pheasants, sharp-tailed grouse and grey partridge. It is 464 acres in size and features deep coulee habitat, a hay flat bottomland, tall sage habitat and Ross creek meanders through the bottomland offering excellent riparian habitat. A late November field trip to the property revealed several wild roosters.
There is no plan at this time to release pheasants on the property as it is considered to have a good healthy population of wild birds. There is a release site on Ross Creek, which is called the Ross Creek Conservation Site that is located on highway 2 west of Irvine, several miles downstream of the Chinook property that is managed extensively by the Chinook Chapter of Medicine Hat and Alberta Conservation Association. This year, the bottom strands on all the barb-wire fence were raised to allow for movement of pronghorn antelope. As well, several truck loads of old posts and barb wire was removed from the property in order to make it safer for people and their pets. The old barn that is currently functioning as a “predator hotel” is also being torn down.
Habitat in and around the Ross Creek Drainage is excellent habitat for grassland upland birds. And, fortunately the land although a lot more expensive than it was a few years ago, is some of the least expensive in the province. We will continue to seek opportunities in this area for further investment.