Metchosin Talk and Walk — Nikki Wright — Eelgrass — June 14, 2019, 7:00 pm

Our last Talk/Walk for the summer is coming up on Friday, June 14, 2019, 7:00 pm, at the District of Metchosin Council Chambers.  Join us to listen to one of the area’s great presenters: Nikki Wright of SeaChange will be with us to talk about “Changing Times for Eelgrass and Nearshore Marine Habitats.”  Humble eelgrass is the foundation for much of our intertidal sea life. 

No Saturday walk this time.

Next Talk and Walk: September 6: Leah Ramsay, Dragonflies.

Andrew Simon — Backyard Biodiversity and iNaturalist + Bioblitz– May 10/11

You’ve heard about the Metchosin bioblizes. Metchosin, however, is not alone in its desire to catalogue and track the species that make their homes in our public and private spaces. Other fascinating  biological inventories have been happening around the Salish Sea. Join us on Friday, May 10, to hear Andrew Simon, one of the key players in these wider initiatives,  talk about citizen science and local biodiversity. See poster below. 

Andrew has been spearheading an effort to employ the iNaturalist software on smartphones to do biologica inventories, so his talk will be followed by a walk on Saturday that will be an iNaturalist bioblitz of the Metchosin Wilderness Park. By using the iNaturalist software, amateur naturalists can make their own contributions to the Mechosin inventory efforts. We need a lot more people in the field making observations, getting GPS locations, and taking pictures our local species, and the iNaturalist software offers a way to reach this goal. Also, some Metchosin people have better access to private lands–perhaps your own properties–than the Metchosin bioblitz planners do.

From 4:00 to 5:00 pm on Friday, before Andrew’s talk, we will have an iNaturalist training session to show people how to install and use the iNaturalist software tool on their smartphones and tablets. If you would like to join this training session, register with us at this email address. Location to be announced.

At the Saturday, May 11, bioblitz, everyone is welcome, whether you are using the iNaturalist software or not. We will start at 10:00 am in front of the Metchosin District Offices, where we will divide into teams and finalize our survey plans. We are planning to be in the field from 10 am to 2 or 3 pm. You are welcome to stay the whole time (bring a lunch!) or leave whenever you need to.

Syd Cannings, the buzz on bumblebees

On April 26, Syd Cannings of the Yukon made his way to Metchosin to tell us about bumblebees, one of his specialties.

The event began with a walk. At 2:00 pm a large group met at Tower Point. Syd helped us to identify some of our local bumblebees.

A yellow-faced bumblebee (Bombus vosnesenskii, dead) that someone brought along for Syd to look at.

The view from the area of Tower Point where we looked at local bumblebees.

At 7:00 pm Syd gave an amazing talk on bumblebees to an attentive audience.

A verse reflection on Syd’s visit by one of the attendees:


There are strange things done ‘neath the midnight sun

By the men who search for bees

The bumblebees in the northern breeze

Bring an entomologist to his knees


The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,

but the queerest they ever did see

Was that night in Metchosin, for all of those in

Council Chambers, for Syd’s talk, brilliantly.

Tom Reimchen talk

When we hike among the cedars at Goldstream Park, our minds are more on botany than on zoology. The majestic trees, however, are direct products of the salmon stream running through the park. 

Professor Tom Reichen, a popular teacher/researcher at the University of Victoria and our next guest (Friday, February 15) at the Metchosin Talk and Walk series, will tell us about “The Salmon Forest.” See poster below. 

There will not be a walk on the Saturday following Tom’s talk. 

Keep Friday, March 8, open on your calendar.  You’ll want to hear our nearest selkie, Amanda Swinimer of Dakini Tidal Wilds, talk about seaweeds. See the Talk and Walk web page for more information on upcoming talks.

Nancy Turner slides




Many of those who attended Nancy Turners talk on “Wild Cultivation” asked for a copy of her slides. Nancy has generously agreed to share them with us. Click on the accompanying image to view the PDF-formatted slides.

Nancy Turner talk, Fiona Hamersley-Chambers walk, Jan 2019

Nancy Turner came to our Talk and Walk in January 2019 and shared with us some of her ethnobotanical work on first nations technology and practice.  Below is a video of Nancy  prepared by Hakai. In it, Nancy talks about our native sword fern.


On Saturday, Metchosin’s own ethnobotanist, Fiona Hamersley-Chambers (a graduate student of Nancy’s), led a walk along high-tide Witty’s beach. Two dozen people turned out to see the evidence of indigenous land management pointed out by Fiona.





On Saturday, Metchosin’s own ethnobotanist, Fiona Hamersley-Chambers (a graduate student of Nancy’s), led a walk along high-tide Witty’s beach. Two dozen people turned out to see the evidence of indigenous land management pointed out by Fiona.

Wild Cultivation with Nancy Turner

Nancy Turner is a living legend in our area.  Her work on indigenous botany and traditional knowledge has helped all of us to understand how to relate to the BC environment and the BC first nations. Nancy has graciously agreed to come to Metchosin on Friday, January 18, to talk about traditional plant management as part of the Talk and Walk series. Please join us if you can (and come early if you want a seat).