MRSS work weekly on the Greenway section of the river. We target specific areas monitoring native plants and removing invasive plants. We meet Mondays (weather permitting/ not holiday Mondays) at 327 Miami River Drive @ 10 AM. Tools, Vests and Gloves Provided. Everyone welcome.
October 23, 2015
The Miami River Streamkeepers have enjoyed a successful and satisfying year since our last AGM held October 4, 2014. Our Society continues to operate within the framework defined in 2012 when we registered our organization as a non-profit society.
Stewardship of the Miami River and its Riparian Area remains the primary focus of the Society. Weekly “Walk and Weed” activity along the Miami River Greenway allows group members to monitor the progress of shrubs, trees, and aquatics we have planted. Invasive or noxious plants are removed. Problems involving damage to the riparian area or suspected contamination by pollutants are monitored and reported as necessary.
Water Quality Testing is done quarterly at three different sites. When testing at one site showed a lowered Oxygen level, the concern was reported to our DFO (Dept. of Fisheries & Oceans) Community Advisor. He visited our site on June 18th to investigate further. The Oxygenation level returned to normal levels following a drop in the atmospheric temperature.
Public Planting.With funds obtained through successful application for a Pacific Salmon Foundation Program Community Grant our group held a Public Planting event on November 3, 2014. 792 plants were installed in designated areas along the riparian area of the Miami River. This was a collaborative effort and our group had the assistance of the Fraser Valley Watershed Coalition Restoration Crew along with members of the public.
Public Education and Involvement is an important focus for our group. To that end we liaised with our local Elementary School in funding a Salmonids in the Classroom Program this year. Funding was provided through the Pacific Salmon Foundation Grant. Our group made several visits to the Grade 2-3 split class to monitor the progress of the project. In May the students and their teacher, with the Streamkeepers in attendance, released 42 Coho salmon fry into the Miami River. This was a very satisfying and successful venture.
The Society liaised with a local child care centre to allow interested children to assist us in Storm Drain Re-marking and in delivering educational packages to residences along Miami River Drive. Our group participated in several community events, setting up an educational & information display for visitors & local residents to review. Articles from our group are published regularly in our local newspaper. These provide education and awareness of upcoming events to community residents.
A series of Interpretive Signs were designed by our group members and, in collaboration with the Council of the Village of Harrison Hot Springs, these were installed in designated locations along the Miami River Greenway. The signs have greatly enhanced community and visitor awareness of the Miami River, the Riparian Area, and factors important in promoting a healthy bio-diverse environment.
With the assistance of a local resident the MRSS has established a successful web-site which offers information and notification of events to the public.
Once again, our group hosted the local Shoreline Clean-up event at the end of September. We liaised with another community group this year (the Harrison Yacht Club) and had several members of the public attend the event.
A highlight for our group this year was a video of the group’s activities by Shaw TV’s “Go Fraser Valley” production crew. The producer accompanied group members on a “Walk and Weed” activity and interviewed several members. We were able to place links to the video on our new web site so visitors to the site have an opportunity to view it.
A hallmark of our small but dedicated group is our collaboration with numerous agencies and partners. We participate in the Salmon Stronghold Council planning meetings and set up an information booth at the yearly Fraser Valley Eagle & Salmon Festival. We attend the Earth Day educational event at a local church and have our educational booth there. The Invasive Plants Council for Fraser Valley assists us when there are large amounts of invasive plants requiring removal. This is done in conjunction with our local Council & grounds crew for Harrison Hot Springs.
We will be holding our AGM on November 14th, 2015. We look forward to exploring ideas and establishing goals for 2016. We have attracted a few new members to our group and will continue our efforts to interest others in participating.
Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival – November 21 & 22, 2015
The MRSS hosts an informational booth at the Exhibitor’s Fair at Leq’a:mel Hall the first weekend of the festival. The Chehalis flats and the Harrison River are renown in late autumn for the world’s largest congregation of bald eagles and BC’s biggest run of Chum salmon . Events run over four weekends. Go to www.fvbef.ca for more information.
PACIFIC SALMON FOUNDATION – COMMUNITY SALMON PROGRAM
Grant Value: $6532.00
Project Value: $29,857.00
Start Date: July 2014
End Date: Spring 2015
Pacific Salmon Foundation, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Village of Harrison Hot Springs, Harrison Hot Springs Communities in Bloom Committee, Fraser Valley Watersheds Coalition, Fraser Valley Invasive Plant Council, Miama Place, River Wynd Strata Corporation, Harrison Elementary School, Harrison Hot Springs Preschool & Childcare, Friends of the Harrison Forest
Salmon fry released May 19th 2015. Read all about it: http://www.agassizharrisonobserver.com/community/304436871
Harrison Hot Springs Elementary School is pleased to announce that our class will be participating in the Project. We have had a lot of support from the local Miami Stream Keepers and are moving forward with the project.
Raising salmon in the classroom is an opportunity to teach students to understand, respect and protect freshwater, estuarine and marine ecosystems, and to recognize how all humans are lined to these complex environments.
The project was undertaken by the Grade 2 and 3 students at the end of January 2015 when the fish eggs were delivered. Miami River Streamkeepers received grant money from the Pacific Salmon Foundation to help finance the project. Four members of the Miami River Streamkeepers viewed the newly set up operation on Feb 4, 2015 . The Chilling Tank is kept at a constant temperature and is covered with an insulated wrap to keep the light out. The children test each day to make sure the temperature is between 5 & 10 C. The students also check th ATU (Accumulated Thermal Units) by adding each day’s temperature to the previous day’s total temperature. The second time the streamkeepers went for the viewing was Mar 2,2015. The eggs had not hatched yet but Mrs Emsley said she comes in even on weekends to check the temperature and the progress. There is information about fish up on the walls and everyone is very enthusiastic about the whole process of the fish cycle. We just noticed on the Harrison Hot Springs Elementary School site that six of the eggs have hatched and are now in the alevin form.
The Northwestern Salamander is a stout, 5 1/2 to 8-inch long uniform dark brown to black, amphibian (cold-blooded animal that start life in water & later transform to a terrestrial form) with a oval tail flattened towards the end. It has strong , well-developed legs and prominent parotoid (swollen area behind eye). Salamanders are voiceless.
It is found mainly in south-western BC. Eggs are laid in February to May in jelly-like masses about the size of a elongated grapefruit. The larvae hatch in about a month and stay in the water about a year. Some metamorphose (change into adult form) in the second summer but others remain in the larval stage indefinitely (neoteny) and breed without gaining adult form.
In the aquatic form they eat voraciously preying on all other living things small enough to swallow. On land look for them under leave litter.
The Western Toad (Anaxyrus boreas) (formerly Northwestern toad – Bufo boreas) is a stout, squat 2-5 inch amphibian of the west found from Alaska to northern California. It has shorter front than hind leg. The skin is rough with large warts. Colour is variable from dark brown to reddish brown background with lighter warts.
Adults congegrate in early Spring along margins of wetlands and lakes to spawn. The male calls with a high pitched note. The eggs are laid in long strings in shallow water. Jet-black tadpoles hatch in a few days and gather in large swarms. Growth is rapid and they exit water at 1/2 inch long to migrate to near by woods. Highway crossing prove dangerous and many toadlets are squashed. Ryder Lake road is a well known hazard.
Adult toads wander considerable distance form water and can be found foraging at dusk for insects and other small creeping organisms. At dawn they retire to damp holes and shaded spots. Look for them along the Miami greenway riparian area. Western Toads are a species of conservation concern.
o Skoda Property planting October 7, 2013 – 4 MRSS members, 3 FVWC crew, & Martin Skoda / very rainy / 52 native shrubs installed
o October 11, 2013 – 10- “volunteer native plants”(potted & tended from Summer 2012 at Perrin’s) planted in 300 block by Janne
o April 15, 2014 – Karl Perrin donated and planted eight native shrubs in 200 & 300-block (one shrub subsequently removed & relocated by homeowner)
o June 23, 2014 – Rachel Drennan, FVWC coordinator, and Janne Perrin prepare plant list for PSF/CSP Grant Fall planting
o September 29, 2014 – plant 100 aquatic plants / MRSS members with the assistance of Karl Perrin’s Gardeners at Large Crew / purchased with PSF/CSP 2014 Grant funds
· HABITAT ENCROACHMENT
o December 9, 2013 Letter to James Weger, EFV Community Advisor re habitat destruction
o August 2014 – Letter to VHHS Bylaw Officer regarding concerns. Advised VHHS Riparian Bylaw only covers new development and to contact the Province. Conservation Officer followed up on concerns with home-owners
· DFO ADVISOR
o May 22 2014 – DFO appoints Bob Schaefer as CA for South Fraser Area & Eastern Fraser Valley, replacing James Weger
· PUBLIC EDUCATION:
o Great Canadian Shoreline Clean Up September 29, 2013 – 16 people / VHHS loaned row boat for river use from Maple St. Canoe Launch to Ruth Altendorf Bridge / Laura Chappell with WildSafeBC & MRSS at plaza but too windy for display boards / 34 kg (75 lbs) trash collected / VHHS supplies bags, pickers, tables & tent / pre & post articles submitted by Janne Perrin published in Agassiz Observer September 27 & October 4th
o November 16th & 17th Booth at Fraser Valley Eagle Festival
o March 27, 2014 – large map of Miami River and large “living by water” posters laminated by Staples
o March 29, 2014 – participated in Harrison Health & Wellness Fair at Memorial Hall
o April 22, 2014 – participated in United Church Earth Day celebration
o June 2, 2014 – 7-minute PowerPoint presentation to VHHS Council / well received
o July 16, 2014 – Janne led Communities in Bloom judges in tour along the 300-block of the Greenway trail. Door hanger packages were given to judges
o September 27 2014 – Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup / MRSS hosts public cleanup of Harrison foreshore, lagoon and Miami River / article & photo published in A-H Observer prior to event/ 20 people registered / one boat and 2 kayaks worked in river / member of Harrison Yacht Club interested in participating in 2015/ 82 people visited WildSafeBC booth / 26 kg trash collected / VHHS delivered tables etc / Gardeners At Large returned materials & trash to VHHS works yard
·PACIFIC SALMON FOUNDATION / COMMUNITY SALMON PROGRAM GRANT
o January 13 to February 6, 2014 worked on an application to PSF/CSP Grant for Miami River Greenway project 2
o February 6, 2014 Submit Application
TOTAL BUDGET REQUESTED FROM PSF $8,056.50
TOTAL OTHER $/IN-KIND (Leveraging) $20,025.00
TOTAL PROJECT COST (PSF & Leveraging)$28,081.50
o OBJECTIVES (Results) for grant:
§ Restore & Enhance 1000 square metres of Greenway stream bank
§ Install a minimum of 2 interpretive signs
§ Conduct a fish survey, monitor water quality & release salmon fry from Salmonids in the Classroom Program
o Project Partners – Fraser Valley Watershed Coalition, Fraser Valley Invasive Plant Council, Village of Harrison Hot Springs, Communities In Bloom, Harrison Elementary School, Miama Place, Sts’ailes Aboriginal Rights and Title Branch, Harrison Hot Springs Preschool & Child Care, Riverwynd Strata & Friends of the Harrison Forest
o April 9, 2014 -CSP 14S 084 PSF grant $6534 awarded to MRSS / fish survey not funded, FVWC restoration crew not funded (FVWC notified us in June they’ll donate all crew services & willow whips as inkind), office supplies not funded / 3 interpretive signs funded by PSF (one to be donated by Miama Place) / Total Value of Project now estimated at $26 984
o July 7, 2014 – Stormdrain marking and Educational Door hangers along Miami River Drive with help of Harrison Hot Springs Child Care children / photos & article published in Agassiz-Harrison Observer
o July 14, 2014 – PSF/CSP grant cheque for $6 534 received
o July 16, 3014– Fall Public Planting date Monday, November 3, 2014 agreed upon by FVWC, VHHS and MRSS
o August 11, 2014 – Chiller unit for Salmon in the Classroom Project with Ms Emsley’s Class / $1 141.91 total cost including shipping / Funded by 2014 PSF/CSP grant
o August 12 Chiller Unit arrived at Chilliwack Greyhound Depot and picked up by Janne for storage at her home until fall
o August 22, 2014- 200 copies of Salmon Steward magazine arrive by post — to be given to the Harrison Elementary School for distribution
o August 29, 2014 – dialogue with VHHS, Miama Place (Martin Skoda), biologist Jill Miners, Allan Jackson & Jane Kivett of CIB on design of 4 Interpretive Signs for Greenway
o Late August / Early September – Japanese Knotweed Treatment completed by Drinkwater Environmental Services under contract to Fraser Valley Invasive Plant Council / two queries from public in response to signage
o September 26, 2014 – Janne visits Ms Emsley at HES with instructions for Salmonids in the Classroom / current classroom theme of spawning salmon / Salmon Steward magazine and Chiller Unit to be delivered soon
· NEW WEIR INSTALED VHHS
o March 28, 2014 – weir to protect sewer pipe crossing at Hot Springs Road Bridge supported by MRSS member & Biologist Ted Burns
· GRANTS TO GROUPS FROM VHHS
o November 2013 –Apply for $840.00 from Grants to Groups
o May 26, 2014 – letter from VHHS re: approved for $600 grants to groups grant / Thank you letter sent to VHHS
· WALK & WEED –
o 114 volunteer hours of Restoration area (Greenway & Cedar Ave) weeding
o September 7, 2013 to September 30, 2014 / total of 36 sessions
· WATER QUALITY TESTING (WQT), Water Quality Equipment Maintenance & Data Entry (Excel & MRSS Website)
o 26 volunteer hours
o Water Quality Testing – Nov. 24-25, 2013, May 19, 2014 & Aug.18, 2014
o Water Quality Index- Acceptable in November & May / Marginal in August
o www.miamiriverstreamkeepers.9k.com / A free site
o Webmaster Janne Perrin / 10 volunteer hours
· BOARD OF DIRECTOR’S MEETINGS
o 9 meeting held from December 2013 to August 2014 / 49 volunteer hours
o August 8, 2014 – AGM set for October 4, 2014 at 10 AM at Riverwynd
o August 2014 – Account opened Agassiz Prospera Credit Union / Signers any 2 of Janne Perrin, Barb Dramer or Mary Baxter / no service charges, subject to annual review
o September 2014 – Bank of Montreal Account Closed as service fees instated
· HARRISON SALMON STRONGHOLD /Sts’ailes Fishers Collaboration
o March 2014 – MRSkS invited to become a member of this group / Janne attends March 7, May 7 and June 18 meeting on our behalf
o Jane Kivett, MRSS & CIB member attends September 10, 2014 “Special Introductory Session for BC MLA’s” meeting / slides of MRSS activities submitted for PowerPoint Show to delegates
· TOTAL VOLUNTEER HOURS RECORDED – Sept. 7 2013 to Sept. 28 2014 / 765 hours
o Value $ 12,122,00 includes work of MRSS members, partners, and public volunteers
This Page is Under Cnstruction
Species of Conservative Concern are those whose numbers and well-being is in question. Their status is assigned by various agencies including the BC Ministry of Environment, Canada’s Species at Risk Act(SARA) and by the Committee on the status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. (COSEWIC)
Oregon Forest Snail
Pacific Water Shrew