Salt Marsh Restoration in the K’ómoks Estuary at Dyke Slough
A tidal marsh is a type of habitat found along coasts and estuaries which is regularly flooded by the tides. The vegetation found in these areas has evolved adaptations to this inundation by marine waters. These marshes are among the most productive ecosystems in our region, with a number of species including waterfowl, other migratory birds, and salmonids using these marshes as habitat. They are home to stunning plant biodiversity and have been important sites of cultivation and harvest of staple food plants, such as silverweed (Potentilla egedii), Camas (Camassia spp.) and Northern riceroot (Fritillaria camschatcensis) for Coast Salish peoples.
Human influences have led to loss of marsh in the estuary. Some anthropogenic influences include climate change, increased storm frequency and intensity, and grazing from resident Canada Geese populations.
The map on this page shows lost, historic salt marsh in red, degraded salt marsh in orange, and intact salt marsh in light green. The area in green with hash marks shows a marsh restoration project under-taken in March of 2021 by Project Watershed, funded by Fisheries and Oceans Canada through the Coastal Restoration Fund.
This restoration built up a new marsh platform to replace lost, historic tidal marsh. The newly built platform (bottom photo) was then planted, all to help support wildlife and coastal resiliency in our thriving estuary.
Earthworks Continue at Kus-kus-sum
While the Kus-kus-sum site is already beginning to come into its own, there is still much work to be done. Just over one third of the area was recontoured and planted last year in 2022. Project Watershed aims to recontour and replant the remainder of the site this summer and fall, if funding allows. The key works you will see on site this year include recontouring and regrading, habitat complexing, and native species planting.
Kus-kus-sum Restoration Overview
The restoration will occur in 3 phases. Click below to read more about each phase and scroll down to see a visual representation of the site features found on the restored Kus-kus-sum site. During Phase...
Forage Fish Map
Project Watershed has been surveying beaches for the presence of forage fish and forage fish eggs. The location of the beaches we surveyed last season are shown below. You can hover over each location to see if eggs were found.
Forage Fish Spring Forum April 26
Announcing the 2023 Virtual BC Forage Fish Monitoring Network Spring Forum! This event is an opportunity for all those interested in the conservation of forage fish in British Columbia to come together and learn about the latest research and updates.
The Importance of Estuarine Environments for Pacific Salmon
Fish monitoring at Hollyhock flats will be starting this summer! We’ve summarized a scientific article explaining what kinds of habitat are important to salmonids.
Kus-kus-sum Site History
A short history of the Kus-kus-sum site from pre-European contact to the present day.