The Nature Conservancy of Canada announced a major project on Earth Day, April 22.

They have now completed their fundraising efforts to conserve the McIntyre Ranch near Lethbridge in Southern Alberta.

All 22,000 hectares of land will now be used strictly for grazing cattle and conserving prairie grasslands and wetlands.

It's the largest conservation agreement in Canadian history.

The historic ranch has been in operation since 1894 and is one of Canada's oldest and largest ranching operations. It's only had two owners with the second owners going through four generations on the property. 

The Thrall Family is donating part of the easement, and the entire project wouldn't have been possible without the support of the Thralls, NCC, and Ducks Unlimited Canada.

Not only will the 22,000 hectares allow for the protection of prairie grasslands, but it will also help to protect the over 150 species of birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles, and fish. Recent surveys revealed 27 species at risk including the ferruginous hawk, the chestnut-collared longspur, and the American badger.