Working with the K’ómoks Nation towards Q’waq’wala7owkw on their unceded territory.

Working with the K’ómoks Nation towards Q’waq’wala7owkw on their unceded territory.

Coastline Restoration in Fanny Bay

Director Dan Bowen and volunteer Don Mitchell enjoying the digging and planting

Hard at work saltmarsh planting

Fence up! Gotta keep those geese and grazers from eating all the baby plants. From Right to Left- Dan George, Stuart Swain and Young Nguyen

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.

During this planting, our Project Manager & Estuary Coordinator, Jennifer Sutherst, conducted field research to evaluate two planting techniques in two adjacent areas. The first technique is the more common method, with single plants spaced in a 30-cm radius from each other. The second technique was guided by recent restoration research, which indicates that saltmarsh plants may survive better by being planted in groups. To this end groups of three individual plants were placed together in a single hole. These were within a one-meter radius from the next group. By performing this hands-on field research, we will be able to compare the survival rate between the two planting techniques with the aim of increasing the survival of our saltmarsh plants.

In addition, the Project Watershed board and staff also ensured everyone’s health and safety by going over our safety protocols first thing in the morning. These guidelines also include the recently developed COVID-19 safety precautions put in place by our Field and Research Assistant, Virginia East. We made sure that everyone had a good time while maintaining their physical distance. The project was initially planned to be finished in five to six days. However, our enthusiastic volunteers and staff were enjoying the planting and the beautiful weather so much, it only took three days to finish. We will continue to monitor this saltmarsh planted at Fanny Bay and will post updates on its status very soon.

Having fun in the sun

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Spring Field Trips

Throughout May and June Project Watershed will be taking elementary school classes out on field trips to learn about estuary and coastal ecology and to assist with planting and plant maintenance.