Since its inception in 1992, Pheasants Forever Calgary has found success through partnerships.

Our very first partnership was with several NGOs including Alberta Conservation Association (ACA), Nature Conservancy Canada and the Chinook Chapter of Pheasants Forever to make a land purchase at Peigan Creek near Seven Persons, AB, west of Medicine Hat.

Our next partnership came in 1998, when PF Calgary approached the Eastern Irrigation District to initiate the Partners in Habitat Development program (PHD). The intent of this partnership was to create, preserve and restore wildlife habitat within southern Alberta while increasing the potential of the agricultural landscape to sustain itself over the long term. The focus was on working with individual producers within the irrigation districts. Partners included irrigation districts, government organizations, conservation organizations and corporate and private individuals.

PF Calgary supported the PHD program through 2010 and during that period:

  • Planted over 858,000 trees and shrubs providing food and security cover for a variety of wildlife species.
  • Seeded over 870 acres to permanent grass cover, providing nesting and security cover for a variety of bird species.
  • Installed 162 kilometres of fencing protecting new and existing habitat from livestock access.
  • Assisted in installing 43 water delivery systems providing water to habitat sites.
  • Helped create and enhance 14 wetland basins.

As PHD came to a close around 2010, the Habitat Legacy Partnership (HLP) was created. The vision for this current partnership is to work collaboratively with other groups to facilitate habitat improvements focused on upland bird nesting, brood rearing, winter protection and connectivity.

Through our partnerships, PF Calgary has proudly played a part in several well-known conservation sites across southern Alberta including:

  • Bull Trail
  • Circle E
  • Chinook
  • East Hays
  • Hopewell
  • Legacy
  • Manyberries Creek
  • Milk River Ridge Reservoir Water Stewardship Initiative
  • Peigan Creek
  • Ross Creek
  • Silver Sage

Several of these properties have been enhanced with the restoration of wetlands and the seeding of cover and food plots. Visit our Habitat Projects page for more information.

Our most recent focus under HLP is our contribution to the Milk River Ridge Reservoir Water Quality Stewardship Initiative (MRRRWQSI). The overall goal of this initiative is the improvement of water quality in the Milk River Ridge Reservoir through the restoration of vegetation along shoreline and riparian areas. The MRRRWQSI initiative consists of nine separate projects that are located around the Waterton-St. Mary Headworks inlet canal and along the shore of Milk River Ridge Reservoir.

The success of the MRRRWQSI has prompted a multi-partner Connectivity Project to address habitat fragmentation, improve water quality and re-establish and enhance wildlife habitat around irrigation features in southern Alberta between Medicine Hat and Lethbridge. Like the MRRRWQSI, this work will benefit agriculture, hunters, anglers and other outdoor enthusiasts.

Another long-time partner of PF Calgary is Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC). PF Calgary has worked with DUC to help fund:

  • The upgrade of ditches, dikes and dams on DUC’s Circle E, a 10,000-acre contiguous block of grass between Bow City and Enchant. Circle E features miles and miles of canals feeding 32 basins, totalling 2,000 wetland acres.
  • Construction of a winter watering facility at the Hopewell project, the busiest pheasant release site in Alberta. This project facilitates winter grazing for cattle, allowing the vegetation to grow throughout spring and summer. By fall the stand is mature and provides optimal hunting conditions for the release program.

PF Calgary is also a partner in DUC’s Marginal Areas Program that focuses on converting small plots of relatively unproductive areas within farmers’ fields into perennial cover. These 10-year agreements are a win-win for all prairie biodiversity, but especially for grey partridge.

PF Calgary has long contended that ditches and right-of-ways provide critical upland game bird habitat. To this end we embarked on an awareness campaign known as Save the Edges, drawing attention to the issue of trespass farming. Intact roadside ditches and undeveloped right-of-ways provide a number of benefits to society including carbon sequestration, nutrient filtration, flood attenuation and habitat for pollinators and birds. We met with several counties and municipalities to discuss the issue and now many of them are using our tools and products to help conserve these valuable public spaces.

As of today, PF Calgary has contributed to the purchase of over 6,000 acres of conservation sites across southern Alberta and to the restoration and enhancement of more than 11,500 acres, all on land that is open to the public for hunting.

These special places will be around for a long time for Albertans to enjoy thanks to these partnerships and our dedicated supporters.

Together, we’re making a difference.