A witness to change
To observe that the inevitable march of time has left lasting changes on the town is common, but to experience it firsthand over many decades is much less so.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada recently added 150 acres to the Grand Codroy Estuary.
If you have some free time this coming Saturday, and love nature and hiking, the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) could use your help.
The NCC will be holding its first ever BioBlitz on July 8 and requires volunteers to help catalogue the birds and plant species of their new 150-acre reserve, which includes the largest bog in the Codroy Valley.
“It’s really important when we get a new piece of land like this parcel in the Codroy Valley that we can get a sense of all the species that are using the property so that we can incorporate that into our property management plan,” said Megan Lafferty, NCC’s conservation biologist in Newfoundland and Labrador.
The goal is to catalogue the species so that the NCC can better protect any rare and endangered species of birds or plants, and monitor any invasive species that might pose a threat to the habitat.
Volunteers will get a briefing about what to look for before being assigned to a grid section.
“We do see a bit of coltsfoot here and there,” said Lafferty of a potentially invasive species that has been spotted in the Codroy area. “It is very rugged and can out-compete natural vegetation if it gets out of control.”
One of the more rare plants needing protection is the two-eyed berry, which locals tend to refer to as the partridgeberry.
“It’s not the same berry that you get in your jams,” Lafferty explained.
The two-eyed berry looks like it has two ends or two eyes.
“That’s one we want to have our volunteers keep an eye out for.”
So far nine people have signed on to help, but the NCC is hoping to attract more. The event is suitable for families as no physical labour is involved, and kids may enjoy spotting the wide variety of sea birds that the estuary attracts. The event will last from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and the NCC plans to pair up experienced naturalists with new participants. Snacks and water will be provided.
For more details check out the NCC’s Bioblitz website: https://events.natureconservancy.ca/al-event/codroy-valley-bioblitz/