Support for the Nature Conservancy proves to be a fascinating partnership
Over the lunch hour on Monday, October 17, pliers, safety goggles, gloves and mesh panels were on the menu for TransCanada head office employees volunteering with the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) to help build range cages.
As part of TransCanada’s month-long Get Empowered giving and volunteering campaign, employees have been supporting conservation efforts of our long-time non-profit environmental partner through various volunteering and awareness events at our Calgary office.
The range cages built by volunteers are used as a tool to monitor the health of grassland plant communities on NCC conservation lands.
“[The range cages] help us measure grazing impact, the rate of growth of plants, because basically what you’re caging, wildlife and cattle can’t get at it,” says Kailey Setter, who works in conservation engagement with the NCC.
“We use it to help us compare the impact of grazed and non-grazed land and that helps inform our management practices on the land because we work really closely with ranchers.”
Preparing for spring guests
Employees also participated in an NCC workshop making bee hotels for solitary bees native to Alberta.
These hotels, made of tin cans, bamboo and cotton, provide bees a place to lay their eggs and leave pollen for the larvae to eat when they hatch. Bees are critical to the ecosystem, and employees will be setting up their bee hotels on their properties in the spring to encourage growth in declining bee populations.
“Bees are the most important insect pollinator,” says Craig Harding, NCC’s manager of conservation science and planning.
“It’s because of how they’re designed. They’re not just interested in the nectar, they want to collect that pollen, which is so important to the plants, to move that pollen from plant to plant.”
High tech highlighted at employee event
Employees further had a chance to virtually explore Backus Woods, an NCC property in Ontario, without ever leaving the office. NCC’s 3-D virtual reality goggles offer a 360 degree view of the forest, enabling employees to learn more about NCC’s work protecting important natural habitat.
Throughout TransCanada’s over two-decade long partnership with NCC, we have provided more than $2.8 million to NCC in support of conservation projects across Canada.