Wetland project report to City Council – May 25

The Prince George Naturalists Club will be presenting City Council with an update on the Hudson’s Bay Wetland Project during the regular council meeting on Monday May 25. Project supporters are encouraged to attend.

The meeting starts at 6:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers, 2nd floor, Prince George City Hall.

Interpretive signs – your ideas needed!

Got an idea for an interpretive sign in Prince George?

The City is developing a 100th Anniversary Interpretive Sign Program that will tie the Heritage River Trail, UNBC connector and Moore’s Meadow into a 30-km loop, utilizing paved trails, rustic trails and sidewalks.

The project includes 30 interpretive signs placed throughout the loop, highlighting flora, fauna, geology, history and other points of interest.

If you have an idea for a sign, please send it to the Prince George Naturalists Club at pgnaturalists@hotmail.ca. There is a particular need for ideas that relate to specific locations along the route. Submission deadline is June 11.

More information and a route map available at https://pgnc.wordpress.com/2015/05/03/pg-naturalists-club-interpretive-sign-program/.

Hudson’s Bay Wetland Project receives new funding

The Hudson’s Bay Wetland campaign has secured two new grants for 2015 project work.

B.C. Nature and the B.C. Naturalists Foundation have provided a $2,000 grant towards informational signage and community liaison, while the Calgary Foundation has provided $2,500 to “help inspire the appreciation and understanding of this region’s natural wonders,” according to an article published by the Prince George Free Press on March 13, 2015.

Wetland project work for 2015 has already begun: volunteers erected three new informational signs describing local fauna during the week of March 9, 2015.

Other projects for 2015 and beyond include a trail and observation deck on the north side of the wetland channel, an earthen ramp to link this trail with Fort George Park, and an assortment of boardwalks, bird blinds and other features.

Read more at “Wetland campaign gets financial help” (Prince George Free Press), or visit Hudson’s Bay Wetland Project.

Interpretive trail signs on the way

As part of Prince George’s 100th anniversary year, Husky Energy has pledged to contribute a new interpretive sign program to enhance the city’s parks and trails system.

The program will connect 35 kilometres of existing trails and walkways in Prince George with 30 interpretive signs highlighting natural and historical points of interest. Four wooden kiosks will also be set up at Cottonwood Island Park, Fort George Park, Moore’s Meadow and the UNBC Greenway. The signs are expected to be installed this summer.

For more information, visit “Husky funds city trail sign campaign” (Prince George Citizen, 5 March 2015).

New video about BC Southern Mountain Cariboo

The North American Cariboo Workshop has produced a new video detailing the current situation of the threatened southern mountain caribou herds in British Columbia, and describing how biologists are working to bring these herds back from the brink.

The video includes interviews with wildlife biologist Doug Heard, wildlife infometrics specialist Scott McNay, and wildlife veterinarian Helen Schwantje.

The project was commissioned by the 14th North American Caribou Workshop hosted in Fort St John, British Columbia in September 2012.

Watch the video at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHTlKliD7P8

2014 Christmas Bird Count

This year’s Christmas Bird Count was as usual very well attended by counters — 42 people in 12 groups — though the birds weren’t quite as forthcoming. The cold wind made them hunker down. In all, 40 species and 6,969 individual birds were tallied — the lowest since 1997.

If you’re interested in details, keep your eye on the BC Field Ornithologists’ 115th Christmas Bird Count web page, which provides details on all of BC’s Christmas Bird Counts.

Hudson’s Bay Wetland unveils new observation deck

The Prince George Naturalists Club officially opened a new accessible observation deck and nature trail at the Hudson’s Bay Wetland on November 9, 2014. The deck and short nature trail, located on the south side of the wetland, connect to the Heritage River Trail System and allow for safe access by schools and other groups.

The new trail and deck are first steps in the Naturalists Club’s plan to complete a 2.4-kilometre interpretive walking trail around the wetland.

To access the trail and deck from the Exploration Place, walk across the railway tracks and down to the kiosk and footbridge. For paved, mobility-friendly access, follow the asphalt pathway at either the south end of Ingledew Street or off Regents Crescent near Rose Lane.

More information: Hudson’s Bay Wetland Project

Wetland Project update

MP Bob Zimmer and Michael Meneer, Vice President of the Pacific Salmon Foundation, will tour the wetland in November. The Pacific Salmon Foundation has provided significant funding to the Wetland Project.

Work on one of the channel side trails will begin in the coming days.

Ducks Unlimited have committed as a major partner on the Wetland Project.

Tumbler Ridge designated a UNESCO Geopark

The District of Tumbler Ridge has become North America’s second UNESCO Geopark.

The designation was granted on September 23, 2014, at the Sixth International UNESCO Conference on Global Geoparks in Saint John, NB.

A geopark is a unified area with geological heritage of international significance. The 8,000 square-kilometre Tumbler Ridge Geopark will showcase dinosaur tracks, mountain trails, canyon waterfalls and wetlands. It becomes one of about 100 UNESCO Geoparks worldwide.

Congratulations to Charles Helm and his team on this outstanding achievement.

For more information, visit http://www.trmf.ca/geopark.html.

Dougherty Creek Universal Access Trail opens Sept 19

Wheels will start rolling along the new universal access nature trail at Dougherty Creek near Tabor Mountain on Friday September 19, with a grand opening set for 10:45 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

The Dougherty Creek Universal Access Nature Trail is a 450-metre-plus ramp and platform trail suitable for travel by persons with mobility challenges and/or mobility aids. The trail boasts two bridges, two culverts, two kiosk signs, six interpretive sign posts, and plenty of trees and natural surroundings.

The trail was spearheaded by the Tabor Mountain Recreation Society. Construction began in 2013 and was carried out as part of a work experience and training program funded by the Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation.

Other project partners include the Regional District of Fraser-Fort George, Horse Council BC, Integris Credit Union, All Nations Elders Prince George, the Prince George Council of Seniors, and Spinal Cord Injury BC.

The Dougherty Creek Nature Trail is located 23 kilometres south of Prince George, near the Dougherty Creek Campsite on Tabor Mountain.

Driving directions: Take Highway 97 South to Buckhorn Lake Road; turn left. Follow Buckhorn Lake Road for 6.8 km until you reach a major bend in the road; turn left onto Scott Road. Travel to the end of Scott Road (2.4 km) to where the gravel starts; take the first right (at o.2 km) and drive until you reach the main parking lot and trail head.