The Slocan Wetland and Assessment Program participated in numerous community events this season including:
- Implementation of Private landowner small enhancements/wetland science, June-Sept. 2017
- Slocan Streamkeeper Society River Float and tour of restored sites, August 2017
- Toadfest, August 2017
- Post-restoration monitoring of constructed wetlands in the Slocan Valley and Meadow Creek, July 2017
- BC Wildlife Federation Workshop, Lentic and Lotic Riparian Assessment, July 2017
- Citizen science, Song Bird/Bull Frog Monitoring, May-July 2017
- Wild Days, July-August 2017
- Tour of Slocan River Streamkeepers Society. Crooked Horn Farm Restored Wetland, June 2017
- Steering Committee meeting, May 2017
- Slocan Lake Stewardship Society, Science & Conservation Action Planning Forum, March 2017
- Columbia Basin Watershed Network, Nakusp Community Engagement, October 2016
- Kootenay Conservation Plan: Private landowner workshop, October 2016
Come out to Wild Days Nature Walks 2016, 9am to 12pm on Aug 6 (Hills), Aug 13 (Bear and Fish Lakes) and Aug 20 (Slocan City).
Wild Days is back this summer! If you are curious about the amazing plants and animals of the Slocan Valley, come on out! There’s outdoor fun and learning to be had in August during WILD DAYS! The Slocan Lake Stewardship Society is offering three family-oriented nature programs in August to explore different habitats within the Slocan Lake watershed. Each day will have local naturalists and scientists on tap to make the day interesting.
The first program, Lakeshore Labyrinth is happening Saturday, August 6. We will take a stroll along the Hills lakeshore and learn fun facts about geology, insects and other little creatures, and plants from our local experts, Richard Johnson and Daniel Hellyer. This event is co-sponsored by Hills Recreation Society and North Slocan Trail Society. The meeting place is at the pullout on the west side of Highway 6 (approximately 11 kms north of New Denver). Look for the SLSS sign.
The second program, Creatures Big and Small will take place on Saturday, August 13. We’ll explore the Bear and Fish lakes pass along Highway 31A and discover fascinating facts about bears, toads, insects, and plants from local scientists Wayne McCrory, Marcy Mahr, and Daniel Hellyer. The meeting place is at Fish Lake Rest Area. This event is co-sponsored by Valhalla Wilderness Society.
August 20 brings us the third and last WILD DAYS program: Mysteries of the Not So Deep, and is co-sponsored by the Slocan River Streamkeepers. Focusing on creek and riparian habitat, we will unravel mysteries of the underwater world of Springer Creek with Shanoon Bennett and Marcy Mahr. The meeting place is at the parking lot at Expo Park in Slocan.
All Wild Days programs run from 9 am to 12 pm. Please save these dates on your family calendar! For further information, contact 250-358-7714 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Learn more about the Slocan Lake Stewardship Society at our table at the New Denver Friday Market starting July 1.
The 7th Annual Toadfest 2016 event was a successful event held at Summit Lake Provincial Park on July 27th 4-7pm and July 28th 9 -12 (noon), 2016. The event is held annually to celebrate the migration of the emerging toadlets from Summit Lake to the surrounding forest habitat. There were information booths, displays and activities in the Park during the event. See Map.
See SWAMP’s poster on the Wetland Invertebrate Multimetric Index that was presented at Toadfest along with a display of wetland invertebrates, plants, photos, mapping tools and summaries of our projects.
Thank you to the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program and their Community Engagement Grant funding stream that provided funds for outreach and educational materials.
Our May 15, 2016, Bug Day at Sissies was a successful event!
“There was around 18 participants, and we hiked down to the ponds past the Whole School and collected several very rich samples of aquatic insects and compared them to the sample that was had collected from Winlaw Creek. The river channelization display was on hand, and thanks to Dave Butt who manned the station while some of us went down to go fishing for aquatic marvels! Everyone had a fabulous day! ” Shanoon Bennett
MARCH 5, 2016- SECRETS OF THE SWAMP: From fen-ominal fens, carnivorous plants and tiny toadlets, our backyard is a wondrous place! Find out about rare and new species found right in our watershed! Local scientists will share cool facts about bull trout, toads, mountain mammals, and more…found in the Slocan Valley.
March 5 2016, 1-4 pm. Secrets of the Swamp. Also, come on out a hear Ryan Durand’s cool talk on wetlands of the Slocan Valley and meet some of our wetland scientists. Hope to see you there. Bosun Hall, New Denver, BC.
Dick Cannings has recently accepted our invitation to attend: Richard “Dick” Cannings is the MP in the federal riding of South Okanagan-West Kootenay. Dick is also the Deputy Critic for Natural Resources for the NDP party and a biologist/author on the natural history of British Columbia and the biology of birds, including guide books, references, essays and anthologies.
- Speakers and SWAMP slide presentations @ 1 pm
- Check out displays; meet local scientists from 2-4 pm
- Make a day of it! Drop-in for the Science Showcase, then take in the North Valley Mountain Film Festival in the evening.
SWAMP’s Wetland Field Day, 2015, Update by Marcy Mahr, SWAMP Field Technician & Educator, Eco Mosaic Consulting
Photos by Ellen Kinsel
Wetland Field Days are hands-on environmental education days that aim to inspire and inform residents and visitors of local communities about wetlands in the Slocan Valley watershed. The north Slocan Valley event took place on August 12, 2015, to showcase what SWAMP field ecologists are learning about wetlands in this part of the valley, specifically around Summit Lake. The event was co-sponsored by the Slocan Lake Stewardship Society (SLSS), and as one of SLSS’s highly promoted WILD DAYS, this Wetland Field Day benefited from the added attention of their educational series. The event was scheduled from 12:00 to 3:30pm to piggyback our field trip to Summit Lake wetlands with Toadfest in order to encourage the public to attend the SWAMP / SLSS event and then ‘hop’ over to Toadfest (also held at Summit Lake). These synergies likely contributed to the Wetland Field Day being very well attended by 37 people – of all ages from toddlers to seniors, and hailing from Silverton to Fauquier and as far away as Istanbul, Turkey!
The event began with the public convening at the Hills Community Fire Hall. After an introduction to SWAMP and the itinerary, the younger participants were taken outside by a SWAMP biologist to explore wetland topics using a large hands-on diorama of wetlands in watersheds. Older participants remained inside with SWAMP’s senior ecologist (Ryan Durand) to learn about different types and classifications of wetlands; their important ecological function in our watershed; and SWAMP’s ongoing field research.
Once at Summit Lake, SWAMP’s field research team led the way along the Rail Trail pointing out the variety of wetland communities, plant species, and clusters of western toadlets moving crossing through wetlands located between the lake and upland habitat. At a site on the lakeshore, the SWAMP field crew provided basins of collected benthic invertebrates for everyone to view and identify. Given the enthusiasm and beautiful weather, many children waded in the water to collect more insects as well as freshwater mollusks. See report by Marcy for more information.
Volunteer’s Narrative by Ellen Kinsel:
“This large group met at the Hills Community Fire Hall on a beautiful, sunny day. The group initially split into older and younger learners, with the older (mostly adult) group inside with Ryan while the younger children went outside with Marcy to explore with the watershed model. Ryan presented a powerpoint talk on different types of wetlands, including swamps, marshes, fens, bogs, and standing shallow water. Meanwhile, the children poured ‘rain’ into the watershed model to observe how the water flowed in two different creek and wetland scenarios. Marcy got them thinking about why the flow differed and the implications – including a bit about the wetlands in the more natural creek. The children then completed the Wetlands Field Journal.
The entire group carpooled to the area where Bonanza Creek flows out of Summit Lake, and walked along the rail trail. Everyone was excited to see toadlets on the trail, and in the grasses, puddles and water-filled ditches. Ryan and Marcy pointed out different wetland types and plant species as we walked along the trail. Ryan explained the procedures SWAMP uses in the field for assessing wetlands using soil cores to determine organic vs. mineral content. A short walk off the trail brought us to the lakeshore where Darcie (Quamme) and Rhia (MacKenzie) had collected a variety of aquatic insects for observation in tubs. Some of the participants waded into Summit Lake with nets to gather additional specimens. The highlight of the afternoon was seeing the various water insects with magnifying viewfinders.”
WETLAND TOURS, 2015
Come out and enjoy wetlands days on August 8 and 12, 2015 in the Slocan Valley! SWAMP events
AUGUST 8, SOUTH VALLEY – Time: 9:00 am – 12:00 pm.
Meet in Winlaw at Fomi’s Bakery. Come learn about
wetlands along the Rail Trail. For further details,
contact Rhia MacKenzie at email@example.com
AUGUST 12, NORTH VALLEY – Time: 12:00 – 3:30 pm. Meet in
Hills at the Hills Fire & Community Hall #4480 on
Highway 6. Learn about wetlands before attending
Toadfest at Summit Lake Provincial Park. This event
is co-sponsored by Slocan Lake Stewardship
Society. For further details, contact Marcy Mahr at
firstname.lastname@example.org or 250-358-2669.