Crown of the Continent Ecosystem Education Consortium

COCEEC’s purpose is to raise awareness of the Crown’s natural and cultural resources, biodiversity, conservation efforts, stewardship opportunities and provide the opportunity for collaborative projects crossing management and geographical boundaries.

Providing a bio-regional focus to ecosystem education in the Crown of the Continent

The Crown of the Continent Ecosystem covers approximately 72,000 square kilometers (28,000 square miles), extending from its northern boundary of the Elk and Highwood Rivers in British Columbia and Alberta to Montana’s Blackfoot River Valley at its southern end. It is three times the size of Connecticut and includes numerous mountain ranges, narrow river valleys, and windswept prairies.

One of the premier mountain ecoregions of the world, the Crown of the Continent encompasses a biologically rich environment that supports 1,000 native plants, 70 mammals, and 260 species of birds. It is a place as rich in life as it is varied in landscape. From its high peaks and glacially carved cirques to its lush valley bottoms and rushing turquoise rivers, the Crown’s features are a paradise to biologists, geologists, tourists, and residents alike.

The Crown of the Continent Research Learning Center, located in Glacier National Park, hires interns each summer to assist with its Citizen Science Program. This intern is searching for Common Loons. Photo by Melissa Sladek, NPS.

The Crown of the Continent Research Learning Center, located in Glacier National Park, hires interns each summer to assist with its Citizen Science Program. This intern is searching for Common Loons. Photo by Melissa Sladek, NPS.

For the most part, natural processes continue to unfold here, largely unimpeded by human tinkering. As a result, species such as grizzly bears, gray wolves, lynx, and bull trout can still be found in the Crown, making it a truly vibrant and functional ecosystem. Even so, recent growth in the area’s human population and new threats from introduced species and climate change are impacting the Crown.

Recognizing the need to educate people about this incredible ecosystem’s unique value, a group of educators from across the Crown have formed a collaborative organization known as the Crown of the Continent Ecosystem Education Consortium (COCEEC). COCEEC’s purpose is to raise awareness of the Crown’s natural and cultural resources, biodiversity, conservation efforts, stewardship opportunities and provide the opportunity for collaborative projects crossing management and geographical boundaries. Projects have included ecosystem-focused curricula, books, maps, and workshops. Please see Products and Projects for a full description.

Please explore our website to learn more about COCEEC and the Crown of the Continent Ecosystem or contact us for more information.