It's been a long time in coming but the Province and the Federal Government have finally reached a $64 million dollar land deal
relating to community pastures.

Agriculture Minister David Marit says three provincial pastures in the Southwest are being transferred to Ottawa, noting the land will
continue to support sustainable cattle grazing for area ranchers.  Livestock grazing mimics traditional disturbance by plains bison and maintains the health and quality of the grasslands.

"Three pastures in the Southwest were the Govenlock, Nashlyn and Battle Creek are the ones that are transferred to the Ministry of Environment, federally."

He notes they had Federal holdings in those pastures anyway.

In return, the Province will acquire federal lands and improvements such as fencing, barns and corrals in 55 former federal community
pastures that have previously been transitioned to producer control.

The Govenlock, Nashlyn and Battle Creek pastures cover an area of 800 km2 and are an excellent example of how governments, ranchers, and conservation groups can work together to protect iconic Canadian species. 

Through collaboration, a strategy was developed to manage the pastures in an economically, socially and environmentally responsible way to support livestock production, wildlife habitat protection and local and Indigenous community interests.

ECCC, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and Saskatchewan engaged local ranchers, communities and Indigenous People regarding the transfer of lands and administration.  First Nations and the Métis Nation of Saskatchewan and ECCC are working to establish an Indigenous Advisory Committee to include Indigenous perspectives as a core partner in the ongoing management of these lands. 

Patrons from the Govenlock, Nashlyn and Battle Creek pastures were actively involved in the development of the operational model that was used for the past two years and that will continue to be used in the future.

This area supports habitat for 10 species at risk including Swift Fox, Sprague’s Pipit, Chestnut-collared Longspur, McCown’s Longspur, Greater Sage Grouse, Burrowing Owl, Ferruginous Hawk, Mountain Plover, Long-billed Curlew and Northern Leopard Frog.