From an email by Jocie to the Botany Group on August 6.
Here are a few interesting flower photos and notes from John B.
As a side note, there is some marsh cinquefoil at Cumberland Marsh, and I’ve also seen it at the Puntledge Bog. It’s probably finished blooming now, but has a neat, chocolate-coloured flower. It often grows right in the water!
Once, eons ago, I found marsh cinquefoil at Poum Lake (Buckley Bay system). They had the road open so I braved the interminable dusty grind last weekend, and lo and behold it was in exactly the same spot. On the way down I had my eyes glued to the road looking for the blue-listed white-lip rein orchid. Found three groups! That is the orchid which we considered doing a trail diversion for in Rosewall Creek last year. So now I can give Marta and co. exact GPS data for their records. I have no idea how the poor little orchid survives right on the edge of a baking hot logging road, plastered with dust. Managed to get some pics of the remaining dirty flowers (going to seed).
Marsh cinquefoil (Comarum palustre)
White-lip rein orchid (Platanthera ephermerantha). For those of you who are thrown off by name changes, this was formerly known as Piperia candida. The common name on iNaturalist (just to make things more confusing) is whiteflower rein orchid.
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From an email by Kelly to the Birding Group on August 6.
Weekly eDNA sampling has begun and will continue till end of November. The sampling is being done at the Airpark Lagoon. This is to assist Bettina Thalinger (University of Guelph) with her research for a method to identify bird species at remote sites.
We have a team of 6 birders involved in this citizen science.
Thanks to Shirley C. for the photos (click to enlarge).
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From an email by Jocie to the Botany Group on July 31.
The last day of July….sigh…what a great month it is for plants! Here are some fun photos from John B: “Plants which like to show off their frilly costumes. All local, and I am sure well known to all who like to slop around in marshes.”
Though exotic looking, all of these are quite common in Paradise Meadows and similar habitats. Buckbean is aquatic, growing in the ponds, deer cabbage is widespread in the meadows, and fringed grass-of-Parnassus is often found along the edges of subalpine streams.
From an email by Randal to the Shoreline Group on July 25.
This story of the European green crab has been in the news lately because it is sneaking up through the Salish Sea area. According to the DFO:
“The European Green Crab is one of the ten most unwanted species in the world. This small coastal crab, which is highly resilient, competes for prey and has the potential to upset the overall balance of the marine ecosystem.”
This is something our group can keep an eye out for in local eelgrass beds. If you see it, DFO wants it reported by email to AISPACIFIC@dfo-mpo.gc.ca.
Purple Loosestrife on the Loose Contributed by Karen
Jocie Brooks has posted some lovely photos of beautiful native plants like Henderson’s checkermallow (Sidalcea hendersonii) found in wetlands like our estuary. I recently hiked the estuary with Brian H. and Jason G. from Sellentin’s Habitat Restoration, on the lookout for purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) and yellow flag iris (Iris pseudocorus), plants that shouldn’t be there. Both of these plants make themselves right at home in moist habitats such as ditches, ponds and shorelines with such speed and ease that they can easily displace the beautiful and ecologically functional plants like Henderson’s checkermallow as well as cattails, sedges and rushes used for food, shelter and nesting material by local wildlife. Both plants can make such dense stands that water movement can be changed and open water eliminated. Hiking across the estuary sounds easy but involves navigating many deep, slippery channels hidden by vegetation while packing removal tools and heavy sacks of purple loosestrife and yellow flag iris remains. Thank you Brian and Jason for continuing to monitor and remove these invaders. ... See MoreSee Less
What track…is that? Take a guess! I’ll reveal the answer in a few days.
Hint: these tracks were in the mudflats at low tide on Comox Bay. This critter often likes to hang out near the shore, where there is lots of food!
Recently, I’ve started collecting photos of tracks, scats and sign. Though I’m new to this, the exercise of looking for animal/bird sign helps sharpen my observation skills as a naturalist. I’d like to share these photos to raise awareness of the many creatures living around us that we seldom see, but if we look, we may find a sign of their presence. Encountering wildlife, even indirectly, deepens our connection with the natural world.
Hey all, we have a park interpreter at Cumberland Lake Park who does free programming Thursday to Monday every week in July and August. Programs include interpretive hikes (max 8 people - have not reached this max yet), presentations and kids activities. You can find more information on our Facebook page at Cumberland Lake Wilderness Society. We have a bat night this Thursday at 8:30pm where we will be learning about bats and listening to the bat echo-location calls. It will be on the main beach with plenty of space for physical distancing. Cheers, www.facebook.com/events/294301338651010/?acontext=%7B%22event_action_history%22%3A[%7B%22mechanism%22%3A%22search_results%22%2C%22surface%22%3A%22search%22%7D]%7D ... See MoreSee Less