Category Archives: BC Wildlife Warriors

The Power of the Pen

Chad A. Larson
Here is Chad on one of his many outdoor adventures.

Our next Wildlife Warrior is Chad A. Parent, Vice President of the Golden District Rod and Gun Club. As well, we would like to give special recognition to all the members of the Golden District Rod and Gun Club. We are recognizing Chad and the Golden District Rod and Gun Club for their hard work they do in the name of conservation, specifically the powerful letter they wrote to Minister Donaldson on Wildlife and Habitat Management.

Chad grew up fishing and hunting small game. As he grew older and entered adulthood, he left hunting behind and focused on his career and raising a family. It has only been in the past few years that Chad has brought hunting back into his life.

“I have a wife and three children, and I wanted to educate them about conservation and teach them the importance of providing for themselves.”

Chad also came to a point in his life where he wanted to get more involved in his community and do more for conservation. Just in the past 19 years, he saw the decline in wildlife populations in the Kootenays. The more research Chad did, the more he realized there are a lot of declines happening all over BC and he wanted to do more to help. It was two years ago that Chad joined the Golden District Rod and Gun Club, hoping this would be a way for him to do more for conservation and to get more involved in the community.

Chad. A parent and Russel Wagner
Russell Wagner (right) and Chad assisting the Conservation Officer Service in the recovery of a grizzly bear collar from the backcountry around Golden.

A little under a year ago, Chad attended a meeting at the club on the proposed Grizzly Bear hunt by the government. He heard that someone was going to write a letter to the government and wanted to be involved in the discussion. Unfortunately, the individual did not write the letter. Chad took it upon himself to pick up the pen and write the letter. He has been writing letters ever since.

Chad and the members of the Golden District Rod and Gun Club try to stay active in their community, “We try our best to get people involved and informed.”

The Golden District Rod and Gun Club are working on getting back to their roots of conservation. In doing so, they have formed a conservation committee who come together to hammer out questions and answers and form responses to various issues, such as Wildlife and Habitat Management.

In an aim to educate the community and get them more involved, the club hosted their first semi annual film night at a local theatre. Admission was free, and they showed a powerful film by Donnie Vincent on hunting. Chad says the club is also working on putting a dock at Susan lake and they are looking into wildlife management initiatives in their private woodlot. A portion of the club’s revenue comes from their woodlot, where they harvest timber. The club has hired a wildlife biologist to develop a management plan for the timber lot, so they can enhance wildlife habitat.

Chad A. Parent at 2018 BCWF AGM
A lunch meeting with other conservationists at the 2018 BCWF AGM. From left to right: Byron Trask CORE examiner, Rick Hoar president of Lake Windermere District Rod and Gun Club, Chad Parent GDR&GC, Russell Wagner GDR&GC, Glenn Flynn Regional president 4E, Iver Larson past president of BCWF, and Dave White past president of BCWF

“The club and I, we are working to make positive change. We want to do something good for fish and wildlife and our community. If the next generation doesn’t care about fish and wildlife, then we are in trouble. We need to put pressure on the government to take wildlife seriously. There are cracks in the system, and we need to work to fix them and work towards making wildlife important to all.”

Chad says a year ago he was stumped at trying to figure out what he could do for fish and wildlife. But he found inspiration in others.

“Rob Chipman was a huge influence, and through conversations with him, he was able to lead me down the right path of what I could do to give back. I also have a lot of respect for Alex Johnson, the previous Wildlife Warrior. He does a lot. When I read his article, I wondered if one day I would be a Wildlife Warrior…and here we are. I couldn’t believe it.”

Chad and the Golden District Rod and Gun club will continue to do their part to educate the community to help the conservation of fish, wildlife and their habitats, and most of all to write to the government so they understand how important fish and wildlife are to the people of BC.

“I do this for my children and for my family. I am a hunter because I want to be able to provide healthy food for my family and educate them on conservation. I just hope that my kids will be proud of their dear old dad.”

Chad A. Larson
Chad and his three sons out hunting.

Read Chad’s letter for the Golden District Rod and Gun Club to Minister Donaldson:

Letter to Minister Donaldson

Urban Hunter Fighting for Wildlife

IMG_0219Alex Johnson went hunting for the first time in the fall of 2014 at the age of 29. He was drawn to hunting for the food opportunities and was lucky enough to be invited to join a well established group who were happy to share their knowledge and experience.  He first became concerned about conservation the following year after seeing the level of road density and deforestation on the way to and from a LEH moose hunt.  He then learned about the declining moose populations in much of the province and became interested in becoming active in conservation.

The natural heritage of BC is something which Alex feels needs to be protected and restored for the benefit of future generations. The native animals and plants of BC are what make our province such a special place. Additionally, he feels that having a strong connection with these animals and their habitats is the most important way to ensure that people will fight to protect them.

After listening to Jesse Zeman of the BC Wildlife Federation on the Rookie Hunter Podcast and the perspective of Steven Rinella on MeatEater, it became clear to Alex that there was widespread misunderstanding in the public about hunting, conservation, and declining wildlife populations.

The misinformation and lack of public awareness about hunting became acutely evident throughout the process which resulted in the ban on hunting grizzly bears.  It was the push he needed to become a Wildlife Warrior.

Since then, Alex has met with his MLA, spoken to the office of the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations & Rural Development, become involved in conservation organizations, provided feedback to government engagement initiatives, and started a blog www.vancouverhunter.com. In the future, he hopes to regularly meet with his MLA, help grow the number of wildlife advocates, and recruit other urbanites from non-hunting backgrounds to become hunter conservationists and increase awareness in the lower mainland.