The Spawn is On!
Pacific sandlance eggs ~ Aaron Schmidt
Beach survery ~ Tom Grimmer
Sand sample under microscope ~ Aaron Schmidt
Our winter Pacific sand lance season was kicked off with eggs being found on Cortes Island on November 6! Later in the month eggs were found at Shingle Spit on Hornby Island and at Goose Spit. As we have been working in conjunction with organizations up and down the coast, through the Coastal Forage Fish Network, we are pleased to announce that eggs have also been found on Thormanby Islands on the Sunshine Coast and in Piper’s Lagoon in Nanaimo.
As of November 23, the spawn is on! This means we will be starting blitz sampling, which will last until sometime in early January, 2024.
Once again, we are partnering with North Island College who are developing their own sampling team. Ecology students from the College were out learning to sample mid November. These students can gain experience in field work, microscope use, lab work and research. Thank you Naomi Tabata, Garnet Marten, and Georgie Harrison for your support and encouragement in the mentorship of students. We also want to acknowledge key students like Aaron Schmidt and Samantha Schneider who have spent many hours over the last two years looking at down a microscope at samples!
This year the Discovery Passage Aquarium has given us access to their location for sieving and vortexing our Campbell River samples. Thank you, Ricky and Shawna for access to this space.
As part of the December sampling, we will be collecting environmental DNA along with our visual samples. If you would like to join us, simply sign up on our volunteer page, January and February dates are now available. Thank you, to all the amazing volunteers who helped with sampling in November. It was a busy and exciting month!
Pacific Sand Lance Day
Friday December 8th, 2023.
Project Watershed in conjunction with many groups across the Salish Sea will be sampling local beaches for Pacific sand lance.
Vortexing with Virginia ~ Tom Grimmer