Category Archives: Nature

Fun & Informative Nature Tour of Byrne Creek

Pamela Zevit of the South Coast Conservation Program led a fun and informative nature tour on Byrne Creek in SE Burnaby today.

Byrne Creek nature tour
Checking out Pamela’s bags of goodies — snail shells, feathers, and other cool stuff.

I’ve been volunteering with the Byrne Creek Streamkeepers for over a decade, and I always enjoy getting out in the park and down in the ravine with knowledgeable folks, be they biologists, or birders, or geologists… There is always something to learn!

Thanks to the City of Burnaby Parks Department for organizing such tours. I’ll be leading one on Byrne Creek on Nov. 14 to look for spawning salmon. More info here.

Tour of the Working Fraser River with Burnaby Board of Trade

It was a lovely afternoon for a tour of the working Fraser River with the Burnaby Board of Trade and Port Metro Vancouver. It was sunny and warm, and in addition to the tugs, barges, cranes, containers, and ships, nature put on a bit of a show, too.

I saw several salmon jumping, and a sturgeon rolled just at the surface of the water. An inquisitive harbour seal also put in a brief appearance, not to mention herons, cormorants, seagulls, and more.

You can check out my Flickr album here.

Fraser River Tour Flickr Album

Byrne Creek Lamprey

There have been some questions about lamprey on the Byrne Creek Streamkeepers mailing list.

Byrne Creek Burnaby LampreyHere’s one that I shot just below the stop log in the sediment pond on July 30 this summer. It was about 15 cm long, give or take a few.

They may seem icky for their snake-like appearance and because many are by nature parasitic, but they are part of the great scheme of things, and have coexisted with salmon, trout and other fish for millennia.

We have observed them spawning in Byrne Creek, in the lower ravine, and in the sediment pond. They are actually quite beautiful to watch when they are mating for they dance and twine together.

South Burnaby Ravine Forests Show Major Cooling Effect

I was happy to see that water temperatures have eased in Byrne Creek in southeast Burnaby.

Today I got readings of 10/11 C in the ravine, and a high of 13 C at the downstream end of the sediment pond. That’s off from 17+ a few weeks ago, which was getting high for the health of salmon and trout.

It was also interesting to note that the air temperature in the thick, tall woods of the ravine was 15 C, while the air temperature standing on the median of Southridge Drive, a four-lane road running past the ravine, was 24 C.

Another example of the natural services provided by woods and forests!

Raining Rodents in Burnaby

I heard a light thud on the roof, or perhaps a window, and looked out to see a rodent on the walk in front of our door.

Dropped by a raptor?

I put on a pair of disposable medical gloves (rodents can carry parasites) and put it in a box. I know a biologist who uses desiccated beasties for teaching, so it’s double bagged and in the freezer.

deermouse