A large property in southwest Alberta is being preserved thanks to the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC).

The Hansen Ranch consists of 365 hectares near Waterton Lakes National Park. For three generations now, the family has been living and working on the Hansen Ranch.

Carys Richards with the Nature Conservancy says this is not only good from an ecological perspective, but it also ensures the Hansen family legacy will continue. “A really great thing about this property is that a conservation agreement with NCC is in place on it. This means some of the development rights have been voluntarily restricted and this make sure it can continue operating as a working cattle ranch while maintaining the natural landscape.”

The Hansen Ranch contains several important habitats which extend beyond the boundaries of the already protected Waterton Park.

The NCC says for landowner Shane Hansen, protecting this ranch is important.

This region provides core habitat and connectivity for populations of wide-ranging mammals including gray wolf, wolverine, Canada lynx and fisher. It also supports habitat for grizzly bears.

Richards notes for decades, the NCC has worked with private landowners to create a natural buffer for the wild species that live in this area.