Introduction: Nature’s treasures have always fascinated humanity, capturing our curiosity and inspiring countless scientific endeavors. With advancements in technology, researchers and enthusiasts have found innovative ways to unlock the mysteries of the natural world. In this article, we delve into the exciting realm of digital tools, such as eBird, the Environmental Dynamics Inc. (EDI) natural screening study, and iNaturalist projects. These platforms have revolutionized the exploration of afforestation areas, enabling us to uncover the rich tapestry of biodiversity hidden within these flourishing habitats.
eBird: A Gateway to Avian Exploration: The avian kingdom has long enchanted nature enthusiasts, and eBird has emerged as an invaluable tool for birdwatchers worldwide. This digital platform, developed by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society, allows citizen scientists to record their bird sightings and contribute to a global database. By harnessing the collective power of birders, researchers can now analyze vast datasets to understand the migratory patterns, population dynamics, and habitat preferences of various avian species within afforestation areas. The observations logged on eBird provide a holistic understanding of bird biodiversity, aiding conservation efforts and contributing to scientific knowledge. Fortunately, Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area has three eBird hotspots to discover!
Environmental Dynamics Inc. (EDI) Natural Screening Study: As part of the sector planning process, EDI Environmental Dynamics Inc. conducted a natural area screening study in the Blairmore Sector Plan Amendment area during the spring of 2022. The study revealed significant findings across various aspects of the ecosystem. Concerns were raised about 14 areas with potential environmental issues in the soils, including two possible contaminants. The area mainly consisted of cultivated land, disturbed/developed land, wetlands, and woodland, with each habitat type playing a unique role in the landscape. A rich diversity of 105 vegetation species was identified, with particular attention given to the presence of two species of management concern in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The study also documented a remarkable array of wildlife, including 91 bird species, 52 invertebrates, and 8 mammal species. EDI’s recommendations focused on prioritizing conservation efforts in the afforestation areas, minimizing wetland degradation, controlling weeds and invasive species, creating buffer zones around the wetland, and enhancing recreational opportunities while engaging stakeholders and community partners. The study provided crucial insights to inform future environmental management and protection strategies in the Blairmore Sector.
iNaturalist: Mobilizing the Curious Naturalist: When it comes to documenting biodiversity, citizen science plays a crucial role. iNaturalist, a popular online platform, empowers individuals to become active participants in scientific discovery. Through iNaturalist projects focused on afforestation areas, volunteers can photograph and share observations of flora and fauna, thereby contributing to a growing database of species occurrences. The collective effort of these citizen scientists enables researchers to monitor changes in biodiversity over time and space, identify invasive species, and even discover new and rare organisms. By fostering a sense of community and curiosity, iNaturalist projects encourage widespread engagement with the natural world. Discover and contribute to the free iNaturalist app- Find it, snap it share it! Your discoveries in the forests align with the GPS location, and your sound recording, or observation photograph will appear on the “Baker Area Eco-Quest” or the “Genereux Park Eco-Quest“
Unveiling Afforestation Biodiversity: The Power of Collaboration: The integration of eBird, the EDI Natural Screening Study, and iNaturalist projects creates a powerful synergy in exploring the biodiversity of afforestation areas. Researchers can cross-reference data from these platforms, gaining comprehensive insights into the interactions between different taxa and their habitats. Such collaborative efforts allow us to identify potential conservation hotspots, detect species of conservation concern, and develop effective management strategies for afforestation areas worldwide. By bridging the gap between citizen scientists, researchers, and environmental organizations, these digital tools are catalyzing a new era of discovery.
As our knowledge of the natural world deepens, so does our responsibility to protect and conserve it. The fusion of digital tools like eBird, the EDI Natural Screening Study, and iNaturalist projects allows us to explore and appreciate the astonishing biodiversity found within afforestation areas. These and other forms of knowledge exploration bring together the expertise of scientists and the enthusiasm of citizen scientists, creating a collaborative approach to research and conservation. By embracing the potential of these tools, we can continue to unravel the intricacies of nature’s web and ensure a sustainable future for our planet’s afforestation areas.
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
NEW P4G District Official Community Plan
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′
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
Tumblr friendsafforestation.tumblr.comFacebook Group Page: Users of the George Genereux Urban Regional Park
Facebook: StBarbeBaker Afforestation Area
Facebook for the non profit Charity Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. FriendsAreas
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Facebook: South West OLRA
Twitter: St Barbe Baker Charity Twitter:FriendsAreas
Please help protect / enhance your afforestation areas, please contact the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. (e-mail / e-transfers )Support the afforestation areas with your donation or membership ($20.00/year). Please donate by paypal 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!
Donations can be made through Paypal, Canada Helps, Contact Donate A Car Canada, SARCAN Drop & Go 106100594 for the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc.
United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration
Use the UN Decade’s Visual Identity
Make it your own
Spread the word about the UN Decade
Let’s Bring Back Forests
Let’s Green Our Cities
“Be like a tree in pursuit of your cause. Stand firm, grip hard, thrust upward. Bend to the winds of heaven..”
Richard St. Barbe Baker