|Submission Date||March 6, 2020|
Nova Scotia Community College
Does the institution own or manage land that includes or is adjacent to legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, or regions of conservation importance?:
A brief description of the legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance:
Has the institution conducted an assessment to identify endangered and vulnerable species (including migratory species) with habitats on land owned or managed by the institution?:
A list of endangered and vulnerable species with habitats on land owned or managed by the institution, by level of extinction risk:
- Monarchs (Danaus plexippus)(endangered)
- Evening grosbeak (Hesperiphona vespertina)(vulnerable)
- Honey bees (beekeeping)(BEEA Honey with a Heart youth program)
- Wide range of local birds (Least Concern) spotted on and near the campus (sparrows, ducks, cardinals, etc.)
Annapolis Valley Campuses:
- Barn swallow (Hirundo rustica) - endangered
- Monarch (Danaus plexippus) - endangered
- Beaver (Castor canadensis) - least concern
- Deer (Odocoileus virginianus) - least concern
- Osprey (pandion haliaetus) - least concern
- Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) - least concern
- Variety of mason bee species
Strait Area Campus:
- Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) (near and around campus)(least concern)
- Bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)(least concern)
- Red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)(least concern)
- Blue Jays (Cyanocitta cristata)(least concern)
- Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)(least concern)
- Red Squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus)(least concern)
- White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus)(least concern)
- Red fox (Vulpes vulpes)(least concern)
- Bobcats (Lynx rufus)(least concern)
- Snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus)(least concern)
- Wood duck (Aix sponsa)(least concern)
- Moose (Alces alces)(least concern)(at least one)
Has the institution conducted an assessment to identify areas of biodiversity importance on land owned or managed by the institution?:
A brief description of areas of biodiversity importance on land owned or managed by the institution:
The methodologies used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or areas of biodiversity importance and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:
Assessments of the three campuses were completed throughout the spring, summer and fall months of this past year (2019), and included general surveying, photo documentation, nature walks, and observations. Observations of wildlife have been recorded, and were cross-checked using the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species to determine their vulnerability. Regular monitoring is done by facilities staff to ensure protected boxes and gardens on campus remain undisturbed. Additionally, at the Strait Area Campus specifically the students and faculty of the Natural Resources Environmental Technology Diploma program monitor and manage the site, keeping track of any vulnerable animal species that frequent the area.
A brief description of the scope of the assessment(s):
At the Akerley campus, the assessment included all areas within the institutional boundary, which included gardens as well as the area managed by the beekeeping program. A small brook at the back of the lot, outside of the institutional boundary was also assessed for threatened species. At the Annapolis Valley Campus, two sites were included in the assessment: the Middleton site and the Lawrencetown site. At these sites, the assessment included all areas within the institutional boundary, consisting mostly of grassy areas as well as a small brook at the Middleton site. The Strait Area Campus site was also assessed and includes grassy areas, as well as a large woodlot on the backside of the site used for academic programming.
A brief description of the plans or programs in place to protect or positively affect identified species, habitats, and/or ecosystems:
At this campus, there are currently several programs in place to assist endangered species and promote native species growth. A garden of swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) has been planted to support monarch butterflies. Monarchs have been spotted in this garden since it was originally planted.
The BEEA Honey With a Heart youth program takes place at the Akerley campus, where youth participate in beekeeping. A wide variety of native plant species on campus help to support the honey bees.
As part of the NSCC culinary program, a kitchen garden has been planted on campus and continues to expand each year. The garden produces herbs and vegetables that are used in the culinary program. This garden has also attracted bee species.
Annapolis Valley Campuses:
For many years now the swamp milkweed gardens planted at the Annapolis Valley Campus have proven to be a success, where monarchs have been observed in the gardens. In addition to these gardens, native plant gardens have been planted on campus to support other local butterfly and bee species. Mason bee houses have also been placed in the gardens to support a variety of mason bee species.
Tall structures are in place at this campus to serve as nesting locations for ospreys. This is to help protect the ospreys from the electrical wires in the area.
Swallow boxes have also been installed on campus to support the endangered barn swallows. Barn swallows have been spotted on campus near the boxes since they have been installed. Bats have yet to be observed on campus, however bat boxes are installed on site to support the declining little brown myotis population.
Beavers have been spotted in and around a small brook located on site, and facilities staff ensure that the brook is well maintained and that the beavers remain undisturbed.
Strait Area Campus:
At the Strait Area Campus, the students and faculty of the Natural Resources Environmental Technology Diploma program monitor the campus and manage the woodlot on site to ensure the forested area and wildlife within are protected.
Bat boxes have been installed at the Annapolis Valley Campus as a safe roosting habitat for the endangered Little Brown Myotis. They will be well kept and maintained by following maintenance standards and procedures that have been researched.
Most NSCC campuses have multiple bird houses on the grounds. Those that don’t do not have the land to provide them. As an example the Annapolis Valley Campus, Lawrencetown site has an osprey nest on site to provide a safe home for ospreys in the area. This platform encourages nesting away from electrical poles, where they will avoid electrocution and reduce the risk of fire from their nests.
In addition to these conservation methods, other small projects have been started in an effort to support species of concern. Milkweed gardens have been planted at the Annapolis Valley Campus as a home to Monarch butterflies, which are identified as a species of special concern by Nature Conservancy Canada. These gardens serve as a safe and nutritious haven for monarchs to live during the spring and summer months.
Mason bee houses have also been installed at the Annapolis Valley Campus among natural areas of lush plant life, as well as in native plant gardens. This is to help support mason bee habitats that assist with pollination, encouraging the growth and strength of native plants along with their surrounding ecosystems.
Estimated percentage of areas of biodiversity importance that are also protected areas :
Website URL where information about the institution’s biodiversity initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.