Talk & Walk Feb 3-4 Resilient Coasts for Salmon

Metchosin’s first Talk & Walk for 2023 takes place February 3-4. Join the Resilient Coasts for Salmon (RC4S) team to learn about coastal processes, climate change impacts, and how we can promote healthy shorelines that protect our homes and important habitat by using nature-based solutions to better adapt to sea level rise. RC4S is a collaborative initiative and five-year project led by the Pacific Salmon Foundation with partners such as the Stewardship Centre for BC, World Wildlife Fund Canada, Peninsula Streams and Shorelines, and others.

On Friday, February 3rd, 7:00 p.m. at the Metchosin Municipal Hall, the RC4S team will lead a presentation and interactive Q&A session about how the project is helping to raise awareness about local impacts of sea level rise on East Coast Vancouver Island, and how we can use nature-based solutions, including the Green Shores® framework to adapt to sea level rise.

On Saturday February 4th, 9:30 a.m., we’ll gather again at Municipal Hall to carpool for an excursion to a nearby beach for a shoreline walk. We will assess the current conditions and processes occurring on this beach, discuss its habitat value and potential vulnerabilities, and then participate in a hands-on workshop.

Presentation by Kyla Sheehan and Maria Catanzaro of the Pacific Salmon Foundation and Kelly Loch of the Stewardship Centre for BC. After the talk, a new 12-minute video on native plants, featuring Metchosin’s own Kristen Miskelly, will be shown.

Talk and Walks resume with mini-MycoBlitz

With COVID somewhat tamed, we are re-launching the Metchosin Talk & Walk series. We’ll begin it with a mini-MycoBlitz! We have found more than 600 species of fungi in Metchosin, but there are still species out there that have eluded our grasp. The event will begin on Friday, November 4, 7:00 p.m., at the Metchosin Council Chambers. (For the safety of all attendees, including those with compromised immune systems, we encourage attendees to wear masks when not eating or drinking.)

At the Friday evening meeting, Andy will present a slide talk on “Magical Mushrooms.” He’ll tell us how mushrooms are associated with the enchanted realm of fairy rings, elfin saddles, witch’s hat (see photo), witch’s butter, and all manner of supernatural creatures.

Then we’ll gather on Saturday morning, November 5 at 9:00 a.m. in front of the Municipal Hall. Our teams of intrepid citizen scientists will head off to all corners of Metchosin, led by our mushroom experts. We’ll return around noon to Municipal Hall, where the experts review the teams’ finds, wrapping up by 12:30.

This year, instead of displaying our finds in the Council Chambers, the Metchosin mushrooms will be taken to the South Vancouver Island Mushroom Show, which begins at 10:00 am, Sunday, November 6, at St Luke’s Church, 3821 Cedar Hill Cross Road. Metchosinites are invited to attend the show (more info at svims.club) and see our local mushrooms labeled and displayed.

Friday night and Saturday morning are both free, family fun events, suitable for all ages. 

Mushroom art cards available

On May 15, the new 2022 Mushroom Art Card set is available for purchase. A project by Metchosin Foundation and Metchosin ArtPod, the boxed set of 36 heavy-cardstock 4″ X 6″ cards features the work of three dozen (mostly local) artists on the card faces.

The cards depict locally common mushrooms. On the back of each card is a description of the mushroom by the authors of the new Mushrooms of British Columbia. More information about the cards is on the Metchosin Biodiversity site.          

 

2019 Marine Day with the CRD

It was a beautiful day at Witty’s Beach for Marine Day 2019. The Metchosin Biodiversity Project partnered with the CRD to plan and host it. Metchosin Foundation came to the event with a booth.

Over 350 people showed up at the beach between 11 am and 2 pm to participate in the program. The CRD Parks staff, out in force, had events such as beach seining, face painting, and scuba divers bringing up sea creatures.  The Metchosin Biodiversity Project sponsored two walks, one with Joel Ussery to look at estuary plants, one with Sean Rangel to look at sea creatures and seaweeds. 

A number of people stopped by the Metchosin Foundation booth to look at the displays and talk with the Directors.  Nicole Lalonde, Morgan Freeman, and Kem Luther (wo)manned the booth.

Andrew Simon talk and iNaturalist bioblitz

On May 10/11, the Metchosin Biodiversity Project hosted a combination Walk and Talk and BioBlitz.  Andrew Simon, one of the region’s experts on bioblitzes, did a talk on Friday night on “Backyard Biodiversity.” 

The next morning, a group of about 15 people met with Andrew and Scott Gilmore (insect specialist from Lantzville) to do a biological inventory of Metchosin Wilderness Park.

Picture by James Holkko. Left to right: Caroline and Mike Bailey, Andrea Rangel, Jochen Moehr, Sean Rangel, Scott Gilmore, Bev Hall, James Holkko, Marcia Waterway, Shelly O’Conner, Kem Luther, Andrew Simon, Lise Gagnon, Ron O’Connor.

Unlike previous Metchosin BioBlitzes, this event was organized around the widely-used iNaturalist bioblitz software. Mike Fischer helped to prepare participants for the event by running a one-hour training session on Friday, before Andrew’s talk.

Many of the participants at the Saturday bioblitz brought their smartphones in order to record their observations.  Some of them brought cameras, planning to upload the pictures to iNaturalist at a later time.

 

Happy hours in Metchosin Wilderness Park. Pictures by James Holkko. Select to enlarge.

Six of the bioblitz participants made, and uploaded to iNaturalist, about 225 observations of approximate 140 different species.  You can view the iNaturalist project additions for the day on the iNaturalist project site. (Key to observers: carolinemetchosin is Caroline Bailey, mwaterway is Marcia Waterway, fmgee is Scott Gilmore, chlorophilia is Andrew Simon,  bioblitz4242 is Sean Rangel). The observation added about 20 new species to the 2600+ already in the Metchosin Biodiversity database.

Except for those by Sean, the day’s observations were almost all from Metchosin Wilderness Park. Sean and Andrea went to Weir’s beach later in the day and made algae observations.

A selection of species from the day:

Metchosin Earth Day 2019

On Sunday, April 14, 2019, the Metchosin Biodiversity Project joined with the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Victoria and Habitat Acquisition Trust to celebrate Earth Day in Metchosin

Despite a cool wind and occasional sprinkles, about 170 eager adults and children joined the 30 volunteers to enjoy music, BBQ hot dogs, nature hikes, crafts, games, and plant scavenger hunts.

Music for the event was by the fantastic Bald Eagles, a Victoria combo composed of musician/naturalists. (click to stop and start video)

Three organizations, Habitat Acquisition Trust, the Boys and Girls Club, and the Metchosin Foundation, had displays for the visitors to browse.