CANCELLED Saturday Sept. 24, 2016 Harrison Lake Plaza 10 a.m. to noon.
The Miami River Streamkeepers Society regrets they are unable to host the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup this year due to unforeseen circumstances. We hope to be back in 2017.
The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is a grassroots direct action conservation program supported by the Vancouver Aquarium that takes place all across Canada during the month of September. It is a participant-driven event whereby volunteers, such as our group, register to coordinate shoreline clean-up events in their local community. For more information on this national initiative, please visit the program website at www.shorelinecleanup.ca.
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.