Ecological Restoration – Planting Time

HAPPY FALL PLANTING!

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Fall is a busy time around the Park, as Metro Vancouver Regional Parks and the Pacific Spirit Park Society plant trees in recently cleared areas.  Most of the year the PSPS Eco Team works on removing invasive species from ecologically sensitive or heavily impacted sites.  However, it is especially important to replant native species in large areas that have been cleared of invasive plants, in order to:

  • increase native plant biodiversity,
  • re-introduce native plant seed sources,
  • out-compete or shade returning invasive plants,
  • decrease erosion and
  • improve wildlife habitat

Last weekend we had over 150 volunteers help plant nearly 1,000 trees along Salish Trail, near SW Marine Drive.  Over the next few weeks we will continue planting another 3,500 native trees and shrubs on the site.  If you are interested in joining in the fun, please email Krista at volunteer@pacificspiritparksociety.org or find one of events on MeetUp.

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Nature Walk -Location Change

Meet us on Binning Road between Gray Street and Birney Street

for a Nature Walk and Talk about native trees.

Please email Krista at volunteer@pacificspiritparksociety.org to register.

We hope to see you there!

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October Eco Blitz Restoration

The Eco Team will be working hard over the next few weeks to prepare the 2016 Pacific Spirit Regional Park Eco Blitz site for planting.  Once covered in invasive Scotch Broom and Himalayan Blackberry, this site will soon become a lovely native forest with lots of plant diversity with a little help from you.

Scotch broom may be pretty, but it quickly becomes the only plant in sight.  Plant diversity is very important in ecosystems because it provides a variety of wildlife with habitat and a source of food.

Plus, Scotch broom is invasive.  That means that it is not native to BC, spreads very fast and does not have natural ecological competitors, such as insects and other plants that can help stop this plant in it’s tracks.

That is why we need you to help us finish removing the scotch broom on October 8th and 15th.

Then, on October 22nd and 29th the Eco Team will be planting 1000’s of trees to help out-complete the scotch broom and provide a home and food to lots of birds and forest animals again.

Find out more or sign up on our Events Calendar or on Meet Up.

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Big Planting Event – Saturday, September 24th

Join PSPS, Metro Vancouver Regional Parks and the Vancouver Park Board increase wildlife habitat by planting native trees in Pacific Spirit Regional Park this Saturday from 11:00-3:00.  Come by for an hour or stay the whole time.  We will have gloves, tools and lots of great snacks!

We hope to see you there!

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Welcome Back!

Hello to all of you who have been away this summer and to those of you who have are finding PSPS for the first time!

We have an exciting fall ahead of us with several wildlife habitat restoration projects, invasive plant mapping, water quality monitoring and nature education programming!

If you are curious to learn more about our programming and restoration projects, stop by our booth at the Wesbrook Village Festival or join in the environmental stewardship fun with the PSPS Eco Team this Saturday.

We hope to see you soon!

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Win a Kid’s Books Gift Card!

What are your favourite things to do in

Pacific Spirit Regional Park?

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CALLING ALL KIDS:

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU!

Send your answer to the question above to Krista at volunteer@pacificspiritparksociety by October 15th, 2016 for a chance to win a Kid’s Books gift card.

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Critter Capers- The Case Of The Missing Berries!

When, after months of patiently waiting for the berries to ripen, Cheryl the Chickadee expectantly returned to her berry bush- only to discover somebody else had already chowed down on every last juicy morsel, depriving her of her long awaited midsummer feast, the Pacific Spirit Park Society and Metro Vancouver were on the case. We opened the crime scene to young detectives, inviting them to track Cheryl’s wing beats around the park and visit information stations, brimming with evidence for them to scrutinise, along the way. Check out our video of the event!

Armed with their clue books, the participants could gather information, eliminate suspects and even complete a DNA test and inspect gruesome stomach contents samples, involving jars filled with plastic beetles, insects, berries, bones and feathers suspended in a watery solution. All in all, the ideal way to spend a day in the eyes of anyone between the ages of 5- 12 years old.

Or… so you might think!

During setting up the circuit, I found myself drifting happily from station to station- the general theme of my thoughts being ‘I would have LOVED this as a kid!’ After consistently and enthusiastically repeating this in my head for over an hour, the strong correlation between having fun at the event and not being a child forced me to adapt my statement. Thus, as the youngsters tackling the whereabouts of Cheryl’s berries began to arrive, I sense our restless energy and sparkling eyes matched one another as I greeted them with “I find this very exciting and I’m an adult!”

During one of my rounds I bonded with a lady, who I’d estimate was in her sixties, over stomach contents jars. She was one of the numerous lone adult stragglers, many of whom had just ‘stumbled upon’ the Critter Capers trail and decided they may as well follow it- you know- since they were there. These older investigators approached the stations somewhat shyly, as though embarrassed that they found the idea of dipping a piece of paper in some water, only to watch it flood with vivid colours and a sense of scientific achievement, too strong a lure to resist.

There were others, who were more confident in their hopeful lingering and exploration of the stations, coming up to poke the props and ask carefully constructed I-was-just-curious-and-I’m-not-even-really-that-interested questions. When asked if they’d like a turn with the DNA test, time and time again an irresistible smile would wrinkle their cheeks and they would reply with a thrilled “Ooohhhh yes please!” dispelling even the most convincing facades of disinterest.

I did not spend much time with many of the children, who paused only long enough to grasp the purpose of each station and conclude which suspect they could put a big cross through, based on the implications of what they’d learned there.

However, the inquisitive sixty-year-old and I, easily spent quarter of an hour closely examining each of the stomach contents samples and swapping observations.

“Racoons eat slugs?” she blinked in disbelief and readjusted her glasses to get a closer look “Wow!”

Critter Capers is an event I admire because it clearly has an effect on people which reverts them back to childhood, but seems to concentrate all the best parts of being new and fresh to the world. Eighteen and sixty-somethings can gaze in wonder and be amazed by the things you might find inside a tree-frogs belly. While the real kids get the opportunity to make positive connections with their local wildlife and regional parks.

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