2020 Funded Projects
2020 EGBI Year in Review
Recipients of Ganawenim Meshkiki’s Eastern Georgian Bay Initiative (EGBI) funding for 2020 projects had their work cut out for them. Armed with detailed plans for conservation research projects and stewardship engagement regimes, they hit the ground running early in the year only to be stalled by the sudden onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in late March. Most projects paused for several weeks or months before establishing new approaches aligned with health and safety protocols related to the pandemic. As a result, many field seasons were either reduced or postponed and many public engagement and education-related events were held virtually or postponed. Despite the ongoing challenges and adjustments, EGBI recipients advanced eastern Georgian Bay conservation initiatives and successfully increased conservation and protection of reptilian/herptilian species at risk (SAR), and the habitats those species call home.
Project successes were diverse and plentiful. Some projects progressed land acquisitions to build and expand important wildlife corridors in the region while others supported wildlife habitats by researching and removing harmful invasive species. Some projects built on longer-term research efforts to bolster understandings related to improving current SAR habitat conservation strategies while others worked intimately with SAR species themselves, tracking, documenting, mapping, and even housing and releasing rehabilitated and newly hatched SAR. Importantly, all projects established connections to the area, taking steps to grow partnerships with organizations and Indigenous communities, build strengths and capacity, share information, and work together to conserve and protect reptilian/herptilian SAR and their habitats in the eastern Georgian Bay region of Ontario.