Provincial dike regulations are forcing the City of Burnaby to clearcut the habitat along lower Byrne Creek that shades the creek and is home to dozens of species of birds and other wildlife.
You can see in these photos how this stretch is going from lush mixed trees, bush, and other vegetation, to wasteland. I understand the need to inspect dikes for safety reasons, but is it really necessary to clearcut everything?
I know that Burnaby protested, to no avail, but I wonder why the work is going ahead just as salmon are returning to spawn.
And I’m sure that summer water temperature in this lower part of the creek will become lethal to trout and salmon with all the cover gone.
UPDATE: Over the course of the day I was in touch with both DFO and City of Burnaby Environmental staff. DFO will be looking into this, and enviro staff sounded surprised at the extent of plant removal, saying they thought only trees that were impeding vehicle movement along the top of the dike were supposed to be targeted at this time.
However, this still comes down to unbending provincial regulations. Cannot a happy medium be found that allows for inspection and assurance of safety, yet retains critical suburban salmon and other wildlife habitat?