The Oystercatcher: News and Events from the Mayne Island Conservancy

March, 2021


Perfect Weather for Counting Birds

By Michael Dunn

Photo: Varied Thrush by Don Enright

Forty-six people collectively logged over 100 hours and 188 km to survey the forests, neighbourhoods, marine waters and the feeders of Mayne Island on December 20, 2020. Because of the weather predictions we needed to set a date around a better weather window, which proved to be a great decision. We had perfect weather for birding – good light, low …

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Field Notes, March 2021

Submitted by Helen O'Brian
Photo by Don Enright

January 28. Hector, the dog, and I set out for our daily walk with a mission in mind. Hector is always eager to get his latest ‘pee-mail’ and to check on the resident red squirrels which he would dearly love to chase if only he could. And me . . . I’m in search of the first Salmonberry blossom of the season. The weather has been exceptionally mild and I thought I might at least see some budding on the bushes. We head through the woods to the spot on Gallagher Bay Road where I have seen them first over the last several years, usually a little later. Eureka! Not just one, but at least a dozen fresh pink flowers are seen animating the leafless shrubbery.

Rubus spectabilis is indeed spectacular. Its blossoms are something I so look forward to every spring. The pink flowers are little jewels of hope for longer warmer days with the promise of tasty fruits to gather on future walks, if one can get a few before the birds. I have yet to taste the young stem sprouts which were eaten as a green vegetable by the northwest coastal peoples. Peeled and eaten raw they are said to have a sweet juicy flavor. Maybe this will be the year I try them. Even Hector may like them almost as much as he likes the berries. Meanwhile, it’s back to the squirrels!

Book Review: Heart of the Coast

Cover of book Heart of the Coast
Review By Lori Nick

Heart of the Coast Biodiversity and Resilience on the Pacific Edge by Tyee Bridge Author Tyee Bridge has written a comprehensive and informative book which focuses on the rich biodiversity of the Pacific Coast. In Heart of the Coast, Bridge features work done by researchers from the Hakai Institute, which has ecological observatories on Calvert and Quadra Islands in British …

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Friends, we're hoping you can make time to join us for two fascinating online events:

Return to Stewardship

Direct and Indirect Effects of Humans on Native Species

Return to Stewardship

March 24, 2021 7:00 pm 8:30 pm via Zoom. Pls RSVP

Join us and UBC Professor Dr. Peter Arcese for a discussion of the ecological impacts of exotic herbivores in the Southern Gulf Islands. “The deleterious impacts of humans on native species are often attributed to the conversion of natural habitat for the production of food and fiber. However, despite having many undeveloped and …

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Eelgrass in the Salish Sea

Eelgrass in the Salish Sea

March 7, 2021 2:00 pm 3:30 pm via Zoom

The Galiano Conservancy Association's Executive Director Chessi Miltner will host Nikki Wright from SeaChange Marine Conservation and Rob Underhill from the Mayne Island Conservancy to talk about eelgrass mapping and monitoring in the Salish Sea. This is one of a three-part online speaker series being hosted by the Galiano Conservancy.

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Anna's Hummingbird Photo: Don Enright
Photo: Anna's Hummingbird by Don Enright

The Mayne Island Conservancy is a local, grassroots organization that operates through the generous support of people like you. We are a registered Canadian charity.

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