Nova Scotia

Nature conservancy wants to help moose cross the Isthmus for Christmas

There are about 29,000 moose in New Brunswick, but only about 1,000 in mainland Nova Scotia

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The Nature Conservancy of Canada is on the campaign trail in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia for the fourth year in a row as it raises money to buy parcels of land in both provinces to allow free passage of endangered animals.

The goal of the campaign, says spokesperson Andrew Holland, is to educate about the importance of the Chignecto Isthmus Focal Area, also known as the moose sex corridor

This marks the 4th annual Help the Moose Cross the Isthmus for Christmas Campaign. 

"This is trying to get moose to move over into Nova Scotia to boost the gene pool. They need it," Holland told CBC Halifax's Information Morning. 

The corridor is intended for moose, bobcat, bear, endangered Canada lynx. There are about 29,000 moose in New Brunswick, but only about 1,000 in mainland Nova Scotia, which are a different sub-species than the plentiful Cape Breton moose, Holland says. 

"They use this crucial area. That's how they get around." 

'We're trying to act now'

Over the last four years, the Nature Conservancy has been piecing together about 1090 hectares, protected on the Nova Scotia and New Brunswick side of the Chignecto Isthmus area. 

This Christmas campaign involves 77 hectares on the Nova Scotia side, two land purchases north of Amherst. On the New Brunswick side, they have 104 hectares of land near Shediac and another project close to Route 16 in New Brunswick that's 32 hectares. They're trying to raise $28,000 to finalize these purchases. 

Holland jokes the project can help interprovincial relations.

"The Nature Conservancy of Canada has chosen this area because of fragmentation," he said. "Wetlands being taken out of commission, so to speak, and also forested areas. We're trying to act now and save the best of what's left." 

Even if this year's fundraising campaign is successful, they still have a way's to go to reach their goal: a single and continuous tract of land for the corridor. 

"These are key pieces of the puzzle and that's what this is all about — working with private land owners who wants to sell or donate their lands to us so we can make a wilderness corridor and it's  showing progress." 

"For the population to have some potential to bounce back, we really need to improve the gene pool on the Nova Scotia side," he said.

The Nature Conservancy of Canada has been working in Nova Scotia since 1971. 

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