World Animal Day

Volunteers following proper protocols come out to the environment and wildlife habitat at Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area [west side] on Saturday October 3 between 9 and 5 to restore natural habitats just in time for World Animal Day Sunday October 4.

Animals, domesticated or wild are sentient beings who live, breath, feel pain, joy and sadness just ask any pet owner. Somehow buniuks have found a way to dump trash in the afforestation areas during the COVID-19 pandemic, and similarly there are those who appreciate the afforestation areas who will right this wrong.

“For one minute, walk outside, stand there, in silence. Look up at the sky and contemplate how amazing life is.” —Anonymous

For directions as to how to drive to “George Genereux” Urban Regional Park

For directions on how to drive to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

For more information:

Canada Helps

Blairmore Sector Plan Report; planning for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area,  George Genereux Urban Regional Park and West Swale and areas around them inside of Saskatoon city limits

P4G District Official Community Plan Sept 24 public hearing

[Draft] P4G Saskatoon North Partnership for Growth The P4G consists of the Cities of Saskatoon, Warman, and Martensville, the Town of Osler and the Rural Municipality of Corman Park; planning for areas around the afforestation area and West Swale outside of Saskatoon city limits

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city. 52° 06′ 106° 45′
Addresses:
Part SE 23-36-6 – Afforestation Area – 241 Township Road 362-A
Part SW 23-36-6 – SW Off-Leash Recreation Area (Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area ) – 355 Township Road 362-A
S ½ 22-36-6 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area (West of SW OLRA) – 467 Township Road 362-A
NE 21-36-6 “George Genereux” Afforestation Area – 133 Range Road 3063
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Where is the George Genereux Urban Regional Park (Afforestation Area)? with map

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Facebook Group Page: Users of the George Genereux Urban Regional Park

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Facebook: South West OLRA

Instagram: St.BarbeBaker

Twitter: StBarbeBaker

You Tube Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

You Tube George Genereux Urban Regional Park

Please help protect / enhance /commemorate your afforestation areas, please contact the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. (e-mail / e-transfers)

Canada Helps

1./ Learn.

2./ Experience

3./ Do Something: ***

“I can no other answer make but thanks, and thanks, and ever thanks.” – William Shakespeare

“This generation may either be the last to survive in any semblance of a civilized world, or it will be the first to have the vision, the daring, and the greatness to say, “I will have nothing to do with this destruction of life; I will play no part in this devastation of the land, skinning it alive by removing virgin tree cover; I am destined to live and work for peaceful construction, for I am morally responsible for the world of to-day and to the generations of to-morow.”

“TWAHAMWE” is our motto.  ‘Let us pull together’, and let us give our active support to all efforts of desert reclamation by tree-planting.”  from the Richard St. Barbe Baker’s Condensed Sketch of Richard St. Barbe Baker’s Life in the University of Saskatchewan, University Archives & Special Collections, Richard St. Barbe Baker fonds, MG 71

“Whenever you are to do a thing, though it can never be known but to yourself, ask yourself how you would act were all the world looking at you, and act accordingly.” —Thomas Jefferson

Water ~ critical long range planning

Water quality month

 

 

The trees and vegetation, which cover the land surface of the Earth and delight the eye, are performing vital tasks incumbent upon the vegetable world in nature. Its presence is essential to earth as an organism. It is the first condition of all life; it it the ‘skin’ of the earth, for without it there can be no water, and therefore, no life.~Richard St. Barbe Baker

On this blue planet, there is water, a lot of water. According to the U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey the Earth’s surface is covered with around 71 percent of water, and of this huge vast body of water 96.5 percent of the water on earth is in the oceans. So these leaves 3.5 percent as fresh water as streams, rivers, lakes, and groundwater. Did you know that when considering “total freshwater, over 68 percent is locked up in ice and glaciers. Another 30 percent of freshwater is in the ground.source

“When the well is dry, we learn the worth of water.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

What does this mean when it comes to the afforestation areas of Saskatoon? Botanists consider the entirety of the lands designated as afforestation areas as wetlands. Of the wetlands, only a small portion are class IV permanent wetlands which may also be termed the north end of Chappell Marsh. The remaining land mass of the afforestation areas are, well, forest to the average visitor to this amazing area of Saskatoon.

“Water is the most critical resource issue of our lifetime and our children’s lifetime.The health of our waters is the principal measure of how we live on the land.” ~ Luna Leopold

The Chappell Marsh wetlands of the West Swale are teeming with ducks and waterfowl. As one of the only sites in Saskatchewan to view the Ruddy Duck, it possesses the capacity to provide foraging, and breeding grounds for many other species, Blue heron, Black crowned Night Heron, Pelicans.

“We forget that the water cycle and the life cycle are one.” ~ Jacques Cousteau

What will happen with Saskatoon’s growing population? The West Swale is a low lying area with its confluence at the South Saskatchewan River. The trajectory of the West Swale connects the North Saskatchewan River through Rice Lake, Grandora through to Saskatoon. Where the intermittent streams on the surface flow towards the South Saskatchewan River, the bedrock aquifer – the groundwater flows towards the North Saskatchewan River, making the West Swale vitally important to the water hydrology of Saskatchewan, and all communities down stream.

“Anything else you’re interested in is not going to happen if you can’t breathe the air and drink the water. Don’t sit this one out. Do something. You are by accident of fate alive at an absolutely critical moment in the history of our planet.” ~ Carl Sagan

It is quite intriguing to watch the city’s long-range plans. When new neighbourhoods are being planned and developed for Saskatoon’s Growth Plan to Half a Million what percentage of the wetlands are being conserved by developers to sustain water quality for the booming city. How does housing density and formulas for neighbourhood population conserve and interact with area previously designated as wetlands? If a wetlands is not in a preservation or conservation zone, what percentage of wetlands is deemed prudent to maintain? If approximately 570 acres of land are set aside for development of a neighbourhood to be home to around and about 10,000 residents, what happens if this land happens to have wetlands in it? Have any cities set precedents in regards to percentage of wetlands conservation areas as urban centres expand outwards?

Calgary:
“In 1981,it was estimated that 78 per cent of the pre-settlement wetlands in Calgary had been lost. Today, the estimate is closer to 90 per cent. Urban development
is now extending into areas of significant wetland complexes, some of which are considered provincially and nationally significant to breeding waterfowl.”Source

The Calgary wetland conservation policy ensures that there is “No Net Loss” of Calgary Wetlands by promoting their conservation and/or mitigation within areas of future urban development and within transportation and utility corridors.”

Edmonton:

“The City will dedicate permanent, semi-permanent, and seasonal wetlands (i.e., Class III, IV, and V Wetlands in the Stewart and Kantrud system) and all peatlands as Environmental Reserve upon subdivision of land. (The Way We Green 3.5.2)” In addition to this, Edmonton sets aside municipal reserves, environmental reserves and public lands of water beds and shores.Source

Is it more prudent to infill the wetlands and construct a housing neighbourhood with the pre-requisite low, medium or high density population no matter what the geographical terrain?  Is 23% of existing wetlands inventory maintained as constructed wetlands an acceptable environmental resource for urban growth in contemporary times?

The wetlands existing in the afforestation areas may be “preserved in perpetuity.” However, there are wetlands in the West Swale not in a preserved area for example west of Sk Highway 7 near the West compost depot. What has happened for example in the long range planning of the wetlands in regards to Saskatoon’s neighbourhoods ~ what percent of the wetlands inventory were conserved?  What will happen to the expanses of West Swale wetlands water areas ~ these wetlands outside of preservation zones?

Ask the City of Saskatoon, the Mayor or your city councillor today.

“Thousands have lived without love, not one without water.” ~ W.H. Auden

“In the setting of standards, agencies make political and technical/scientific decisions about how the water will be used. In the case of natural water bodies, they also make some reasonable estimate of pristine conditions. Natural water bodies will vary in response to environmental conditions. Environmental scientists work to understand how these systems function, which in turn helps to identify the sources and fates of contaminants. Environmental lawyers and policymakers work to define legislation with the intention that water is maintained at an appropriate quality for its identified use.Source” We need to conserve, and carve out a place for wetlands for future generations to ensure water quality.

Remember World water Day is celebrated on 22nd of March and Water Quality Month is August.

“Water, thou hast no taste, no color, no odor; canst not be defined, art relished while ever mysterious. Not necessary to life, but rather life itself, thou fillest us with a gratification that exceeds the delight of the senses.” ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupery

while knowledge about nature is vital; passion is the long-distance fuel for the struggle to save what is left of our natural heritage and ~ through an emerging green urbanism ~ to reconstitute lost land and water. Passion does not arrive on videotape or on a CD; passion is personal. Passion is lifted from the earth itself by the muddy hands of the young; it travels along grass-stained sleeves to the heart. If we are going to save environmentalism and the environment, we must also save an endangered indicator species: the child in nature. ~Richard Louv.

FURTHER NOTES
Saskatoon Wetlands policy.

Saskatoon Wetland policy document wetlands design guidelines?

Growth Plan Half a Million City of Saskatoon.
For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city. 52° 06′ 106° 45′
Addresses:
Part SE 23-36-6 – Afforestation Area – 241 Township Road 362-A
Part SW 23-36-6 – SW Off-Leash Recreation Area (Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area ) – 355 Township Road 362-A
S ½ 22-36-6 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area (West of SW OLRA) – 467 Township Road 362-A
NE 21-36-6 “George Genereux” Afforestation Area – 133 Range Road 3063
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Where is the George Genereux Urban Regional Park (Afforestation Area)? with map

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Facebook Group Page: Users of the George Genereux Urban Regional Park

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Facebook: South West OLRA

Twitter: StBarbeBaker

Please help protect / enhance /commemorate your afforestation areas, please contact the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. (e-mail)

Support the afforestation areas with your donation or membership ($20.00/year).  Please donate by paypal using the e-mail friendsafforestation AT gmail.com, or by using e-transfers  Please and thank you!  Your donation and membership is greatly appreciated.  Members e-mail your contact information to be kept up to date!

QR Code FOR PAYPAL DONATIONS to the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc.
Paypal

Payment Options
Membership : $20.00 CAD – yearly
Membership with donation : $50.00 CAD
Membership with donation : $100.00 CAD

 

Twitter: StBarbeBaker

Who Speaks for the Heron?

A universal need. It embodies the spirit of service to mankind in attempting to provide a means of supplying forever a necessity of life .

Great Blue Heron Ardea Herodias

The Great Blue Heron Ardea Herodias, a wondrous marvel to behold, and yet did you know it is rated as “uncommon” albeit with a very large range.  In the West Swale wetlands and Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area in Saskatoon, quite a remarkable phenomenon has occurred.  Generally speaking one heron will not take habitat where there are other herons, and yet here there is the Great Blue Heron in the same West Swale wetlands as the Black Crowned Night Heron (Nycticorax nycticorax ) ~ the Black-Crowned Night-Heron is introduced  in  The Outlook for Wildlife.

Never was there a greater difference in herons as you observe them in the West Swale wetlands.  the Great Blue Heron, tall and elegant has a height of 42 – 52 inches  (105-130 cm)  standing fully grown.  So here  is this heron on long legs with long long neck reaching 4 feet high.  The Black Crowned Night Heron,  is 23 – 28 inches (58-70)  cm with short yellow-green legs, and not only is he smaller, but this heron also sets down hunched or hunkered down, as if to shorten his 2 foot stature.

But could there be a better locale than the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area for these two disparate herons?  Both require woodlands, the trees for roosting in.  The Great Blue Heron nests within the branches of trees, and yet if one was to see a Great Blue Heron, it would likely be when they are standing still, patiently fishing concealing themselves within the rushes, sedges and cattails of the marsh shorelines.  This behavior is also seen in the Black-crowned Night-Heron who also nests and roosts in trees, and if one was to keep their eyes wide open at dusk, and set very quietly it may be possible to sight or perhaps even to hear a Black-crowned Night-heron flying out from the forest to forage at the water’s edge, as they feed nocturnally.

There is also known another species, the Little Blue Heron (Egretta caerulea), however the range of this smaller heron 24 inches (60 cm) does not extend as far as central Saskatchewan.

Seeing a large bird in flight, and wondering if it is a crane or a heron, it is good to note that the heron will fly with its head tucked back, extending the chest forward.  The cranes, such as the Sandhill Crane (Gus canadensis) with a similar size 40-48 inches (100-120 cm) will fly with its neck stretched out and elegant. The Whooping Crane (Grus americana) is also about the same size, 50 inches (125 cm) however there are not nearly as many of these amazing white birds to be seen, though they are bounding back from the brink of extinction.  Watch carefully flight of Sandhill Cranes overhead, as a solitary endangered Whooping Crane may flock with the Sandhills.  There are only around 200 Whooping Cranes left, however due to conservation efforts and public awareness of their plight, their numbers are slowly climbing.

The Sandhill Crane is also a long legged long necked grey bird, but differs from a Great Blue Heron as the Sandhill will have a bald red crown atop its head, and the Great Blue Heron will have a very dark to black coloured  plume of feathers extending out at the back of his head rather like a backwards baseball cap.  The Sandhill Cranes often frequent the fields and meadows in and around the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area seeking food in the autumn months during the migratory season.

What can you do for the “uncommon” Great Blue Heron and “endangered” Whooping Crane to protect and aid in conservation?  How can you reduce the decline, and eliminate some of the threats posed for the Great Blue Heron and the Whooping Crane

?  How can you celebrate the centennial of the migratory bird convention?

  1. First of all become a citizen scientist, and participate in a bird survey.  Expand your knowledge on conservation efforts.  Learn bird songs, and bird calls.  Discover how to identify birds.
  2. Secondly, protect the habitat, find out how you can volunteer, support conservation groups and become involved.
  3. It is important, thirdly, to reduce hazards, become actively engaged marking your own house and business windows, stop using pesticides which eradicate the forage of the birds, and reduce pollution in the environment by participating in clean ups and calling Saskatchewan environment TIPPS line to report environment violations and polluters.
  4. Let others know about what you have learned about birds and their habitats and how to protect them.  Share and expand the knowledge you have learned with others.  Celebrate International Migratory Bird Day (second Saturday in May), The United Nations General Assembly World Wildlife Day on March 3, National Tree Day September 21.
  5. Find local, provincial, federal and international agencies and associations who are native prairie stewards, those that conserve native prairie, those who may restore native prairie, green groups for wildlife and habitat management, environmental organisations who may seek to manage water, wetlands and riparian management.
  6. Make a personal commitment to maintain, conserve and restore a piece of native prairie.Determine what actions you can realistically make to achieve your goals, then monitor and evaluate your progress.  As you establish your values as a wildlife habitat and native prairie steward,  preserve and respect archeological and historical resources.

“Birds contribute to our pleasure and standard of living.  But they are also sensitive indicators of the environment, a sort of “ecological litmus test.”~Roger Tory Peterson. Peterson p.432

“This , then, is the task: nothing less than reclaiming water as a commons for the Earth, and all people that must be wisely and sustainably shared and managed if we are to survive.” ~Maude Barlow. Barlow. Page 175

“Canadians Love Our Water Heritage. This may be true in our imaginations and in our literature. But is seems not to be in reality, for if we loved our great water heritage, we would take better care of it.” Maude Barlow. Barlow. Page 181.

“Canada – and we as citizens – must act now if we are to carve out a coherent set of rules governing our water resources. Our country is in urgent need of a national water policy and strategy to protects its water, ecologically and jurisdictionally. To be effective, this policy must be developed among all of the different levels of government ~ federal, provincial, territorial, municipal and aboriginal.” Maude Barlow. Barlow. Page 206

“The rule of no realm is mine…But all worthy things that are in peril as the world now stands, those are my care. And for my part, I shall not wholly fail of my task,…if anything passes through this night that can still grow fair or bear fruit and flower again in the days to come. For I also am a steward. Did you now know? ~ J.R. R. Tolkein Barlow.Page x

“The science of forestry arose from the recognition of a universal need. It embodies the spirit of service to mankind in attempting to provide a means of supplying forever a necessity of life and, in addition, ministering to man’s aesthetic tastes and recreational interests. Besides, the spiritual side of human nature needs the refreshing inspiration which comes from trees and woodlands. If a nation saves its trees, the trees will save the nation. And nations as well as tribes may be brought together in this great movement, based on the ideal of beautifying the world by the cultivation of one of God’s loveliest creatures – the tree.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker.

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Barlow, Maud. Blue Covenant. The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water. Is Canada’s Water for Sale? McClelland and Steward Ltd. Toronto, ON. 2007.ISBN 978-0-7710-1072-9

Moen, Jim. Managing Your Native Prairie Parcels Your Guide to Caring for Native Prairie in Saskatchewan. 1998. Saskatchewan Wetland Conservation Corporation. Regina, Sk ISBN 1-896 793-19-3.

Peterson, Roger Tory. Western Birds. 1990. Houghton Mifflin Company Massachusetts. ISBN 0-395-51749-4 ISBN 0-395-51424-X pbk.

Sibley, David Allen. The Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Western North America. Chanticleer Press, Inc. New York. 2003. isbn 0-679-45121-8.

 

For directions as to how to drive to “George Genereux” Urban Regional Park

For directions on how to drive to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

For more information:

Blairmore Sector Plan Report; planning for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area,  George Genereux Urban Regional Park and West Swale and areas around them inside of Saskatoon city limits

P4G Saskatoon North Partnership for Growth The P4G consists of the Cities of Saskatoon, Warman, and Martensville, the Town of Osler and the Rural Municipality of Corman Park; planning for areas around the afforestation area and West Swale outside of Saskatoon city limits

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city. 52° 06′ 106° 45′
Addresses:
Part SE 23-36-6 – Afforestation Area – 241 Township Road 362-A
Part SE 23-36-6 – SW Off-Leash Recreation Area (Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area ) – 355 Township Road 362-A
S ½ 22-36-6 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area (West of SW OLRA) – 467 Township Road 362-A
NE 21-36-6 “George Genereux” Afforestation Area – 133 Range Road 3063
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Where is the George Genereux Urban Regional Park (Afforestation Area)? with map

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Facebook Group Page: Users of the George Genereux Urban Regional Park

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Facebook: South West OLRA

Twitter: StBarbeBaker

Please help protect / enhance your afforestation areas, please contact the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. (e-mail)

Support the afforestation areas with your donation or membership ($20.00/year).  Please donate by paypal using the e-mail friendsafforestation AT gmail.com, or by using e-transfers  Please and thank you!  Your donation and membership is greatly appreciated.  Members e-mail your contact information to be kept up to date!

QR Code FOR PAYPAL DONATIONS to the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc.
Paypal

Payment Options
Membership : $20.00 CAD – yearly
Membership with donation : $20.00 CAD -monthly
Membership with donation : $50.00 CAD
Membership with donation : $100.00 CAD

1./ Learn.

2./ Experience

3./ Do Something: ***

What was Richard St. Barbe Baker’s mission, that he imparted to the Watu Wa Miti, the very first forest scouts or forest guides?  To protect the native forest, plant ten native trees each year, and take care of trees everywhere.

“We stand in awe and wonder at the beauty of a single tree. Tall and graceful it stands, yet robust and sinewy with spreading arms decked with foliage that changes through the seasons, hour by hour, moment by moment as shadows pass or sunshine dapples the leaves. How much more deeply are we moved as we begin to appreciate the combined operations of the assembly of trees we call a forest.”~Richard St. Barbe Baker

 

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