S,DÁYES Flycatcher Forest

Together with the Pender Islands Conservancy, Raincoast purchased 13-acres of Coastal Douglas-fir forest and associated habitats on S,DÁYES (North Pender Island), WSÁNEĆ Territory, in early 2021… and this is just the beginning.

Photo by Alex Harris /
Raincoast Conservation Foundation.

The campaign

The best way to ensure land is protected is to own it. In November 2020, Raincoast partnered with the Pender Islands Conservancy to co-purchase a conservation property on S,DÁYES (North Pender Island). Despite planning for a six-month fundraising campaign, we secured the required purchase amount in less than three months.

The property

British Columbia’s Coastal Douglas-fir (CDF) biogeoclimatic zone is the smallest and most endangered of 16 such zones in the province. It is also among the least protected, and this protection is mostly made up of small disconnected patches. It covers less than 0.3% of the province. This limited extent  makes this property incredibly valuable. This is especially true as it supports a large healthy wetland, which provides essential habitat to at least 46 bird species including olive-sided flycatchers. These birds in particular find their homes in the fringes of forests bordering wetlands, and have been provincially and federally listed as threatened due to habitat loss. Gulf Islands forests are among the few places these birds are thriving. As a species linking forests and wetlands, the Flycatcher has become the namesake of the place. Given North Pender Island is the territory of the WSÁNEĆ people, who know it as S,DÁYES, we have named the forest S,DÁYES Flycatcher Forest. 

The future

This is the first property Raincoast has purchased with the intent of restoring the land and securing its long-term protection with a conservation covenant. We are in the process of registering a covenant on the land title in partnership with the Islands Trust Conservancy. This  will be followed by ongoing restoration (e.g. junk removal, invasive species removal, and native species planting, with a focus on planting culturally significant food and medicine species), ecological monitoring, and education activities, particularly for WSÁNEĆ youth. We are also currently drafting  the property management plan in collaboration with local scientists and Traditional Knowledge Holders.

My time at Raincoast: A Reflection

Aug 19, 20224 min read
Paige Griffin shares her experience interning with Raincoast’s Gulf Islands Forest Project.

Field Notes from S,DÁYES Flycatcher Forest

Aug 12, 20224 min read
Field notes from a group of youth learning about restoration and conservation on Pender Island.

Developing a management plan for S,DÁYES Flycatcher Forest

May 10, 20225 min read
we are seeking public input to inform the management and restoration plan for this property as a first step in developing the stewardship ethos that will govern this forest for generations.

2021: Our impact so far

Jun 30, 20213 min read
We are already halfway through the year, and I wanted to share with you some of Raincoast’s achievements thus far. This progress relies on donors like you and the entire team at Raincoast sincerely appreciates your support. Here’s a snapshot of Raincoast’s efforts over the past six months.

How art will help protect S,DÁYES Flycatcher Forest

Feb 19, 20214 min read
We are incredibly grateful to every person who transformed this initiative from the hopes of one person into reality, and because we cannot thank each of you individually, we wanted to recognize a few of the artists who have donated their time and talent to the permanent protection of local ecosystems.

You did it: 13 acres in 3 months!

Feb 17, 20213 min read
We are excited to announce that together with the Pender Islands Conservancy, we have raised the funds required to purchase and permanently protect S,DÁYES Flycatcher Forest on North Pender Island…