PEACE REGION BUTTERFLY EXHIBIT FOR COMMUNITY CENTRE

Thanks to the generosity of Louisiana -Pacific Canada Ltd (LP), an outstanding exhibit is being developed in the Tumbler Ridge Community Centre, forming another of the Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation (TRMF) displays (and bringing the total to twenty-seven).

This time it is an exquisite regional butterfly collection, on long term loan to the TRMF. These specimens were collected as part of an inventory initiated by LP in 2003 and funded through the Forest Investment Account. As managers of Crown land in the Dawson Creek Timber Supply Area, LP is responsible for maintaining biological diversity across its operating area. In 2003 the BC Conservation Data Centre listed 15 butterfly species as ?Blue-listed? (of Special Concern) in the Peace Forest District. Very little was known about the butterflies of the South Peace region, let alone how they may be affected by forestry practices. In the spring and summer of 2003, LP hired one of the top butterfly experts in the province to conduct a reconnaissance-level inventory of butterfly species occurring within the areas and habitats managed by the company. Seventy-five species were found during the inventory, including all blue-listed species. The project clarified the status of these species and significantly improved the baseline knowledge for all local butterflies. The conservation status of several butterfly species has since been revised as a result of this work. Most importantly from the company?s perspective was the confirmation that LP?s forest management practices are either beneficial to the listed species, or have no effect at all.

 LP is pleased to lend this collection to the Tumbler Ridge Museum, where members of the public can appreciate the diversity and beauty of our local butterflies. The area around Tumbler Ridge was well-sampled during this project, with the townsite, Bergeron Falls, Wolverine River, Quintette Mountain, Bullmoose Marshes, Murray Canyon Overlook, Tepee Creek trail and Mt. Spieker all visited. A Dingy Fritillary (Clossiana improba) found on Mt. Spieker represents the first documented occurrence for that species in the South Peace area. The project report and complete data set are available at

http://a100.gov.bc.ca/pub/siwe/details.do?id=3451

 The collection will be housed on the upper level of the Community Centre in the ?Galbraith Table?, donated by TR Housing Corporation after the successful housing sale that helped save Tumbler Ridge in 2004. Community Centre staff has been extremely helpful in enhancing security measures so as to protect this valuable exhibit, which will also be under camera surveillance.

 An interpretive guide is being developed with BC150 funding that will lead visitors through all twenty-seven exhibits in the Community Centre, including this priceless butterfly exhibit. The Tumbler Ridge Museum Foundation is most grateful to Louisiana-Pacific for the opportunity to exhibit this collection to a wide audience.