Historic Earth Day 2020
We at Project Watershed wanted to hold an event at Kus-kus-sum this week to celebrate Earth Day, but obviously that is not possible with the current pandemic situation. We do feel that the story of the Kus-kus-sum project provides an uplifting alternative to the doom and gloom.
Recently Tim Ennis, Kus-kus-sum Senior Project Manager stated that “the importance of natural areas which are accessible to broad sectors of society and embedded within local communities has taken on a pronounced importance not previously recognized. Particularly in relation to mental health in this time of social distancing with Covid-19”.
Tim Ennis went on to say, “Many of the natural areas within the Comox Valley are not National Parks, Provincial Parks or the like. They are beaches, small creek-side areas, swamps and wetlands that were protected by local non-profits working in partnership with local governments. They are the places where frogs sing, skunk cabbage blooms, and people find solace in these stressful times. Our Kus-kus-sum project fits that description to a T while also supporting biodiversity at the regional, national and continental-scales so it is a great time to be thinking about it!”
Project Watershed has been pleased with the donations towards the final land payment following the recent CBC Radio coverage, however, we still need about $650,000 by the end of June. Fortunately, our Estuary Angel has stepped forward and will be matching donations up to $30,000. So for this Earth Day instead of coming to an event we are hoping you celebrate Earth Day at home, perhaps using the suggestions below, and make a donation large or small to Kus-kus-sum. We still have a few wooden salmon left if you want to sponsor one to go up on the Kus-kus-sum fence!
Here are some Earth Day links you can use to connect to nature, today and every day:
This video follows a forage fish field day, from sampling to the counting of eggs, in the late fall of 2019.
This Annual Report summarizes Project Watershed`s activities over the 2019 – 2020 period.
While many citizen science groups have begun conducting spring/summer forage fish spawning surveys, we still need a few more volunteers to cover some of the beaches in our area. Specifically we need volunteers for Quadra Island and Campbell River.
One of our wonderful supporters is sewing face masks and donating the proceeds to Kus-kus-sum. They are quality hand made cotton masks with a filter pocket and non-woven filter provided, pleated front, and a wire inserted over the nose piece for a better fit.
On June 17-19, 2020 Project Watershed organized a planting session to restore the vulnerable coastline in the Fanny Bay area. During the three days, our staff and 19 volunteers helped plant almost 2500 individual plants, comprised of Salicornia, Distichilis and dune grass species. This planting compliments another coastal restoration project where the shoreline was revegetated to protect the area from erosion.
On June 30, the students and instructors of Toshikan Traditional Karate and Kobudo, in Courtenay, completed 108 kata (kata is a series of self-defence techniques combined in a traditional form) as fundraiser for the Kus-Kus-Sum project, in appreciation of Project Watershed’s good work for natural habitat of the valley and the estuary.
A variety of native plants, shrubs and trees will be established at Kus-kus-sum as part of the restoration process. This will not only provide food, shelter and habitat for fish and wildlife but also help mitigate climate change. Check out this video to find out more.
Project Watershed’s Kus-kus-sum project is important for supporting the broader Salish Sea Ecosystem. The project will restore habitat for fish and wildlife, attenuate flooding, and create habitat connectivity to adjacent conservation lands in the estuary. Kus-kus-sum provides habitat for mobile species, such as salmon, that utilize the broader Salish Sea ecosystem in their lives.