Paul Hanley presents St. Barbe

Images~University of Saskatchewan,
University Archives & Special Collections,
Richard St. Barbe Baker fonds, MG 71

Richard St. Barbe Baker presented by Paul Hanley [YouTube]

Transcript follows in this article

YouTube https://youtu.be/DH-wg7-IBPw

Celebrating National Tree Day September 26, 2018
and
the 40th Anniversary Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Introducing St. Barbe Baker from the biographical book; Man of the Trees. Richard St. Barbe Baker, the First Global Conservationist. By Paul Hanley Foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales Introduction by Jane Goodall ~ Written by Paul Hanley environment awareness promoter, activist, free lance writer, speaker, and author

Transcription is as follows:

This is Paul Hanley, the guest speaker of the evening.

And we also have Renny Grilz from the Meewasin Valley Authority who has come to introduce him and say a few words about Paul Hanley other than what you already know kind of thing about him So I would like to introduce Renny to you then

Thank you Julia

Thanks everyone

So the wind has died down. Really good.

So thank you for the invite.

And I am Renny Grilz Resource Management Officer with the Meewasin, and Meewasin’s been involved with part of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area since the 80’s This half of the afforestation area falls under our conservation zone. We don’t do much direct management but we have been working with a lot of volunteer stewards like Julia and Jeff with the Fat Tire people and they’ve been doing a great job keeping this place clean and looking ship shape – So really appreciate that Thanks a lot Julia.

With Paul – Paul and I were here on a volunteer event four summers ago three summers ago. Julia had organized the event out on the west side of the Richard St Barbe Baker and cleaning up some of the garbage and it was amazing how much garbage we were finding and how much we pulled out, we had our truck and trailer and we filled it several times.

However what was interesting, was that as we started getting further back into the bush

we were starting to notice this area becoming more wild and more naturalized So this area was planted in about the ’70s – 1972. and what was interesting was that you start wandering through the afforestation area you could start seeing a forest eco-system forming. You know there’s evidence of woodpeckers. This spring, the nature society came out for a bit of a bio-blitz and they found yellow lady slipper which is an orchid and a rare plant and they found that over that way [pointing to the east side of the SW OLRA] I had one of my summer students come out afterwards and she found some more .

So when you think about the work that Richard St. Barbe Baker did – so he planted trees in the prairies – he planted trees around the world – and its more than just a tree, you know he created ecosystems. And this is a site that’s forming its own eco-system right on the edge of the city.

My first introduction to the site was in early 2000, when I was working for Ducks Unlimited and we bought the land right across the road – Chappell Marsh – and at that time it was an overgrazed pasture and there was a former mushroom factory there they used the old acreages there, they used to make mushrooms there – a mushroom farm. And also there was shotgun shells. So it was sort of a different feel to that site, and now you look at the site and its a beautiful wildlife theme- nature built itself there

So its interesting coming out to these areas and you explore them and you get a re-connection to the land and a re-connection to the forest.

With Paul and his work, Paul has been quite involved with Meewasin over the years, has been a strong advocate for Meewasin has written quite a few things about Meewasin, and we really appreciate it and we are all excited to hear about Paul’s new book.

Richard St. Barbe Baker, Meewasin has recognized him quite a few times in different things. We have plaques for him down in the river valley there’s a memorial as well, and I think his legacy will definitely live on especially in Saskatoon. With that, I will pass it back to you.

Thank you very much.

Paul Hanley, this is someone who personally knew Richard St. Barbe Baker and now he has delved into a bit more of the biography and I’ll pass it over to you.

Thank you Julia, Thank you Renny,

So, it’s good to be here with you folks and Ill tell you a bit about Richard St. Barbe Baker in my new book,

I also wrote the 25 year history of the Meewasin Valley Authority,

St Barbe Baker did make a little appearance in that.

So this place is named after him and I guess he is kind of to me like a conservation super hero – starting in the 1920s, from about 1922 to 1982 when he died he was just on a world wide tour constantly traveling everywhere encouraging people to plant trees to save the planet.

I think possibly he was one of the first people to do that on a world wide scale, so that’s why I called him the first Global Conservationist.

So today, we think of people like Jane Goodall, and David Suzuki, and they are known everywhere for their work. He was the first person like that who was trying to raise consciousness among something like 100 countries he traveled. He started the first environmental non-governmental organization- it went global – it’s called the Men of the Trees its now the International Tree Foundation, and he started that in 1922 in Kenya. At one point it had 5,000 members in 108 countries. It was quite a legacy he started.

One of the things I find very interesting is the impact that he had on a number of people through little things that he did. So for example he would go and give little talks like this to people, and do radio interviews, and newspaper interviews, and some people heard those things and went on to make a great difference. For example there is a fellow named Tony Rinaldo and he was an Australian. One time he was with his father, and they were visiting a big farm and he noticed in the shed a great big pile of books, and on the top of this pile was a book called “Sahara Challenge” by Richard St. Barbe Baker and he picked up the book and it inspired him to become a forester. He went to Niger later and developed a whole new way of reforesting the desert, and working with the farmers there, they were able to reforest 12 million acres of the desert in Nigeria.

And Scott Poynton is another person with the same story, when he was fifteen heard a radio broadcast with Richard St. Barbe Baker – was inspired to become a forester, and started something called the forest trust, and what they did was they got the furniture industry to change all of their wood purchases towards sustainable forestry and now they’ve gone on to industry after industry working with them to change their practices towards sustainable wood management.

And there’s a number of stories like that.

One of the most interesting is a guy named ‎Felix Finkbeiner and he started when he was nine years old he had a school project and he was supposed to write about the environment. he heard Richard St Barbe Baker and Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathai who were both doing the same kind of work promoting tree planting and he wrote this paper and then he started an organization for children called Plant for the Planet. Over the years they have developed a whole program where they have child tree ambassadors and he is a really good publicist so he started working with people like Harrison Ford, Prince Ranier of Monaco, and they have this great campaign where they are standing there and have their hands over their mouth, and stop talking and start planting.

And these kids really got something going and now he is nineteen years old and his program has taken over the United Nations environment programs, tree planting effort, and he’s supposed to be planting a billion trees, and they changed the name to a Trillion Trees. And their goal is to plant one trillion trees There is about 3-4 trillion trees in the world, so now we are talking about a major tree planting effort here. They planted 15 billion trees so far and again inspired by Richard St. Barbe Baker.

So I find it really interesting how sometimes its the little things that we do have more impact than the big things that we do. So he tried in the 1950s to create a massive programme to reforest the Sahara Desert ’cause He believed that it used to be forest. He did an expedition through the desert, drove though it in a vehicle, found tree stumps in the middle of the desert and so on, so he started this campaign. And he said we should build a great green wall across the Sahel region of the Sahara but nobody would listen to him, they thought he was crazy. But today, they are planting a great green wall across the Sahara and some countries like Niger are doing a really good job of it.

So some of his ideas were way out there, at the time, and he was kind of like a voice crying in the wilderness, and people didn’t listen, but some of his ideas are taking hold and are happening around the world.

His organization Men of the Trees, which is now called in Australia, is called Trillion Trees as well.

They had, for example, the Guinness Book of World Records, for the most trees ever planted in an hour – 150 thousand trees – So they had this massive – all these students out to plant trees.

Just some of the impacts that have been felt.

Then, of course, there is his connection to Saskatoon.

When he was a young man he came here to decided to homestead and he came to Beaver Creek, He failed as a homesteader but he also became one of the first students at the University of Saskatchewan and was a lumberjack up at Big River which was at the time one of the largest sawmills in the British Empire, and he saw all of the bad forestry practices and became aware of them. That was one of the triggers he had for becoming a forester. He also spent a lot of time with people from Whitecap Dakota First Nation, which is not too far from Beaver Creek and he said a lot of his inspiration came from listening to their stories and so on. And throughout his life he was very connected with indigenous people. In Kenya when he went there, he became the first white person to become inducted into their secret society of elders in the Kikuyu tribe.

And he became very involved with the Maori and so on.

So basically from the time he was a little boy, just a little toddler, he was planting trees with his father who was a nurseryman, and he was here in Saskatoon in 1982 to plant his last tree, he was in a wheelchair, he got up from the wheelchair, and helped a bunch of children plant a tree which is now marked on the Meewasin trail right by the Diefenbaker Centre – his last tree- and a couple of days later he died, and he is buried in Saskatoon.

So anyways, that is some of his story, and I can answer questions, or talk some more, but its kind of cool.

That’s really awesome. I learned quite a bit of stuff I realized I hadn’t known about him before. That’s very awesome. Let’s say thank you to Paul. Let Richard Kerbes say a couple of words then if you guys want questions to anybody, either Renny, Richard or Paul you can ask them, but why Richard Kerbes is out, he is representing the SOS Elms Coalition. And I believe that one of the things when Richard St. Barbe Baker wanted to do on his last trip to Saskatoon was to try to establish a branch of the International Tree Foundation here, and SOS Elms Coalition is the advocate for the trees in and around Saskatoon. They are a bunch of foresters and grass roots people that have joined the group and so I’ll leave it over to Richard to introduce the SOS Elms Coalition and if you wish to say anything regarding Paul Hanley too.

Thank you Julia. We owe a lot to Julia. She’s the one who really brought the afforestation areas here to our attention. Because of course its a big job to try to educate on the urban forest, and this was a little corner that has been preserved and and more or less forgotten, and thanks to Julia for her efforts.

Its been many many community associations and green groups, a big group effort [from many wonderful community members, indeed].

Certainly in the spirit of St Barbe..

We started in ’92 which is about 10 years after St Barbe’s death, and he was certainly in our minds when we started- he was well known. One of our early members was Robert White – a friend of yours Paul – and on and off he was a great and important advocate and supporter for us, and he brought along quite a lot of help from the Baha’i community as well, and its unfortunate that Robert couldn’t be here tonight.

And I must apologize for getting here late, circumstances beyond my control.

In any case. We started as a citizen’s group to advocate for the American Elm in particular. We since broadened and covering the whole of the urban forest, both the planted trees and the wild trees in Saskatoon. In ’92 when we started, Dutch Elm disease had just entered into the south eastern corner of Saskatchewan and it was a contagion killing American Elm, and not much was being done by either provincial or municipal governments both places. So we took on this task We had a very dynamic president in our first five years. She literally traveled all over the southeast of the province to promote awareness and the need for action. And our efforts did lead to both the provincial government, and the City of Saskatoon really increased their effort for going into monitoring for Dutch Elm disease. It’s of course a hopeless case for the wild stands of Elm, but in our communities of Saskatchewan we have lost a lot of American Elm to Dutch Elm disease, but Saskatoon is very special, because we have only had one case here, it was probably a … fighting a … so that’s one feather in our cap but of course the battle is never over.

There is so many threats to our urban forest as if it wasn’t enough for natural threats like Dutch Elm Disease and other pests. We have several on our horizon. and things like the Cottony Ash Psyllid (Psyllopsis discrepans) which has been killing our Ash trees. On top of that, its a continual battle with various governmental authorities to regulate infill construction because its a good thing to have high density in the central part of the city, but the centre part of the city is where the old mature trees are as well.

Its a continuing job we have in lobbying. In any case, we have a number of projects we have carried out. The most recent is, we have a tree tour guide to the special and unusual or especially nice specimens of trees in the City of Saskatoon. So if any of you are interested, I am happy to give you a copy, And of course I am happy to take your name if you would like to join or join our mailing list or join – our membership is only $10 a year. You can have the satisfaction, as Julia has implied, we are here in the spirit of St. Barbe and Julia pointed it out to me – I didn’t realize that in his last visit here St. Barbe had specifically noted that for historical, for nostalgic reasons, since this is where he really started his appreciation of trees, that we feel kind of honoured, though its not official, that we are carrying on what he promoted his whole life to. So thank you very much.

Thank you Richard.

I think we have three awesome speakers here on behalf of National Tree Day, Paul Hanley is a great environmentalist and brings a lot of attention to environmental concerns, and he has done an excellent of Richard St. Barbe Baker, and Richard and the SOS Elms Coalition is doing a great job preserving our trees in the City of Saskatoon and surrounding area, and Renny representing the Meewasin Valley Authority, if it wasn’t for them this area wouldn’t be managed, and the river bank wouldn’t be a phenomenal place with all the trails and the Cranberry Flats, and Beaver Creek all that wonderful stuff, so lets give another big round of applause to all our wonderful speakers here today, and thank you all also for coming out, and I think what you come out – it turned out we didn’t have snow today, it turned out to be not too bad of a day, the wind has come down, and thank you all of you to appreciate National Tree Day, and to see the Afforestation Area.

And Paul when is your next showing, is that McNally Robinson?

Book Launch: Man of the Trees. Richard St. Barbe Baker, the First Global Conservationist. By Paul Hanley Foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales Introduction by Jane Goodall

November 20 is the launch at McNally.

So if anybody wants to hear a speech maybe a bit longer, and maybe inside, and would you have your slide show at that time.

Yes.

And at that time you would have a slide show.

And let people know about that. Spread the word.

Thanks for inviting me.

Thanks for coming.

Thank you guys for coming as well.

That book, I did a course on plants through the historical and social script of the plants and that book surfaced, and was given to the class so you can go and find the oldest tree in town, and the biggest tree in town, and there’s an address.

Isn’t it awesome.

Richard St. Barbe Baker presented by Paul Hanley

YouTube https://youtu.be/DH-wg7-IBPw

The average citizen has yet to learn the importance of Forestry…the man in the street does not know that the presence of Forests, in reasonably proportionate areas, is vital to human health and in order to stay the process of the disintegration of the surface of the land….Happily the solution of the Problem is at hand.”   ~University of Saskatchewan,University Archives & Special Collections,Richard St. Barbe Baker fonds, MG 71

Book Launch: Man of the Trees. Richard St. Barbe Baker, the First Global Conservationist. By Paul Hanley Foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales Introduction by Jane Goodall

Paul Hanley, Saskatoon, SK

Paul Hanley Eleven on You Tube

Paul Hanley Meewasin Conservation Award 2014

Paul Hanley, Eleven Billion People Will Change Everything.

Paul Hanley, Saskatoon StarPhoenix, Page 1

Paul Hanley, Saskatoon StarPhoenix, Page 2

Visit Paul Hanley’s website:
http://www.elevenbillionpeople.com/

To learn more about U of R Press, visit:
https://www.uofrpress.ca/

To check out Sask Books’ Book store, visit:
http://www.skbooks.com

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
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

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

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

Facebook: South West Off Leash Recreation Area SW OLRA

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Tagged Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Twitter: St Barbe Baker

Contact the Meewasin Valley Authority in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. The MVA has begun a Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund. If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund (MVA RSBBAA trust fund)”.  Post to MVA 402 Third Avenue South Saskatoon, SK S7K 3G5  Please and thank you!

Membership in the Saskatoon Nature Society  “supports nature conservation projects and [the society] is an active advocate for the preservation of plant and animal habitats”.

Please contemplate joining the SOS Elms coalition ~ an active group interested in forest management~ or make a donation to “Save our Saskatchewan” [SOS] Elms ~ leave a message to support the afforestation area  😉

1./ Learn.

2./ Experience

3./ Do Something: ***

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Herptology; What is a herptologist?

What a question in the middle of winter, however as spring approaches ~ “Where are the frogs?” is a most excellent query!!!

“Stewards of Saskatchewan” is a voluntary program of the provincial group Nature Saskatchewan.  With this program, volunteer stewards collectively monitor population data on various at risk species.  One of these is the Northern Leopard Frog, (Lithobates pipiens or Rana pipiens) designated as Special Concern in Canada

Please report to the Stewards of Saskatchewan SOS survey, if you sight one of the species on their list.  Did you know that April is Frog month? Celebrate Frog Month with your family!  Find out how to become an amateur herpetologist this April!

Where might be one of the places in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area where  a Northern Leopard Frog could be sighted?

The Chappell Marsh, the permanent wetlands of the West Swale contain water all the time.  But where are the temporary wetlands located?  This is exactly where the frogs are singing their merry songs.  This area for the lands east of  Chappell Marsh in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is marked as a yellow oval on the attached map.  The Northern Leopard Frog, sings just to the west of the southwest off leash recreation area.

FrogMap
Northern Leopard Frog, Rana Pipiens Map

Just as farmers watch the weather; “In dry years, arable agriculture can fail over large parts of the province, whilst in wet years, flooding has caused widespread damage to rural and urban infrastructure.” “(Pomeroy, 2005)

So, too, do the frogs seem to watch the weather.  During dry years such as those experienced 2015, 2016, and 2017 there were no frogs heard at the Richard St. Barbe  Baker Afforestation Area.  However in 2013 and 2014 frogs were a delight to the years, especially as the Northern Leopard Frog is a species of Special Concern.  As the weather cycles in the province, it can be expected that another year of flooding may follow the very dry years experienced 2015, 2016, and 2017.  The newspapers report the flooding damaging crops, basements and highways however the glorious thing which is missed on the years of high water tables, is that the frogs come back!

There are definitely other areas, such as where the old grid road is being swallowed up by Chappell Marsh near the road turn off to Chappell Marsh Conservation Area.  The old grid road is partially submerged, making it the perfect habitat for frogs [and ducks] as well.

Now then, it would be a very intriguing for a herpetologist,  volunteer ‘Steward of Saskatchewan’ or conservation officer to engage in a project to walk with a GPS app which records altitude.  This project would scan the entirety of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and ‘George Genereux’ Urban Regional park for altitude levels similar to the altitude of the meadow west of the South West Off Leash Recreation Area.  Other areas which provide a rich habitat for the Northern Leopard Frog could be identified in this method for the areas west of Chappell Marsh and in ‘George Genereux’ Urban Regional park.  In this way during years of flooding the Northern Leopard Frog could be surveyed and counted in identified Frog zones.  And accordingly in the years of drought, the environment could remain undisturbed awaiting their safe return.  🙂

Perhaps, just perhaps, this would be a way to ensure the Northern Leopard Frog’s survival.  An altitude test may just help to find the temporary wetlands conducive to the frog’s habitat, and could then be protected from development.  Either that, or developers would need wait until years of high water tables before developing land to determine the habitat for frogs.

Saskatchewan cycles through years of drought and high water tables.  The years 2013, and 2014, saw very,  very high rain levels, spring run off and flooding.  Chappell Marsh itself washed out a grid road, and water pumps were allocated to try to divert the flooding away from Saskatchewan Highway 7 west of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and CN Chappell Yards.  The cycle of very wet conditions was also seen historically over the years 2005, and 2006. (Garnet, 2012)

July 13, 2014, Emily Chan reported “In Saskatchewan, it’s estimated that a total of up to 3 million acres, including some farmland, have already flooded.”   “Highways closed and communities declared states of emergency …, ” reports the Canadian Press on June 30, 2014 due to a deluge of rain.

“From too much rain to not enough — and everyone baking in the heat — communities smashed weather records in July across Saskatchewan.”(Climenhaga, 2017)  Whereas, in direct contrast to the years of 2013 and 2014, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada reported that 2016 was the hottest year on record, replacing the record set in 2015. In 2017, “Saskatchewan farmers say drought conditions in some parts of the province are the worst they have seen in decades “(Bridges, 2017)  “Record-breaking temperatures and extremely low rainfalls across Western Canada are causing chaos for farmers and firefighters this summer as they grapple with the worst drought in more than a decade.” {Sikierska, 2015)  Drought also ravaged Saskatchewan over the years 2001 to 2002. (Garnet, 2012)

“Nowhere else  in Canada does the lack or excess of water cause such widespread concern, nor are there many Canadian environments subject to greater seasonal change in precipitation and surface-water storage.”(Pomeroy, 2005)
Drought years have been recorded as 1961, 1967, 1979, 1980, 1985, 1988, 2003, 2009.  Whereas, the flood years are reported  as 1965, 1977, 1986, 1991, 1993, 1999, 2005, 2010.  (Garnet, 2012)
“The trees and vegetation which cover the land surface of the Earth and delight the eye, are therefore performing vital tasks incumbent upon the vegetable world in nature. The glorious rich, colourful, quilted covering of vegetation is not there merely to feed and please us. Its presence is essential to Earth as an organism. It is the first condition to Earth as an organism. It is the first condition of all life; it is the ‘skin of the Earth, for without it there can be no water and, therefore, no life. ” Richard St. Barbe Baker.

Bibliography

2016 Annual Report of Agroclimate Conditions Across Canada Government of Canada Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

Bridges, Alicia. Sask. farmers say drought conditions worst in decades. Farmers, ranchers face tough season due to hot, dry weather.  CBC News.

Chan, Emily.  Prairie farmers frustrated as flooding drowns crops.  Ctv News.  July 13, 2014

Climenhaga, Christy.   Regina experiences driest July in 130 years. July topped the charts for hot and dry weather in southern Saskatchewan. CBC News.  Aug. 1, 2017

Cross, Brian. Rising waters wash away land, farmers’ futures . The Western Producer. May 7, 2015

Flooding, highway closures as heavy rain pounds Prairies Canadian Press.  June 30, 2014.

Garnett, Ray and Madhav Khandekar.  From Drought to Wet Cycles The Changing Climate of the Canadian Prairies.  May 3, 2012.

Pomeroy, John, Dirk de Boer and Lawrence Martz.  Hydrology and Water Resources of Saskatchewan.  Centre for Hydrology Report #1.  Department of Geography, University of Saskatchewan February 2005.

Reeve warns flood water could flow over Hwy 11 in Lumsden area CBC News.  May 5, 2013

Saskatchewan flooding: 37 communities declare state of emergency CBC News.  June 30 2014

Sask. Flooding >Flood-battered roads crumbling around eastern Sask. Culverts, bridges, train tracks washed out over a wide area CBC News. July 2, 2014

Siekierska, Alicja.  Hot, dry and disastrous. Western Canada’s drought is taking a toll. Edmonton Journal.  July 25, 2015

Top ten weather stories for 2010: Story three. From Dry to Drenched on the Prairies.  Government of Canada.  Environment and Climate Change Canada.

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
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

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

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

Facebook: South West Off Leash Recreation Area SW OLRA

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Tagged Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Twitter: St Barbe Baker

Contact the Meewasin Valley Authority in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. The MVA has begun a Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund. If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund (MVA RSBBAA trust fund)”.  Post to MVA 402 Third Avenue South Saskatoon, SK S7K 3G5  Please and thank you!

Membership in the Saskatoon Nature Society  “supports nature conservation projects and [the society] is an active advocate for the preservation of plant and animal habitats”.

Please contemplate joining the SOS Elms coalition ~ an active group interested in forest management~ or make a donation to “Save our Saskatchewan” [SOS] Elms ~ leave a message to support the afforestation area  😉

1./ Learn.

2./ Experience

3./ Do Something: ***

 “We forget that we owe our existence to  the presence of Trees.   As far as forest  cover goes, we have never been in such a  vulnerable position as we are today.  The  only answer is to plant more Trees – to  Plant Trees for Our Lives.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker

Where are the frogs?

What a question in the middle of winter ~ “Where are the frogs?” indeed.

“Stewards of Saskatchewan” is a voluntary program of the provincial group Nature Saskatchewan. With this program, volunteer stewards collectively monitor population data on various at risk species. One of these is the Northern Leopard Frog, (Lithobates pipiens or Rana pipiens) designated as Special Concern in Canada.

Please report to the Stewards of Saskatchewan SOS survey, if you sight one of the species on their list.

Where might be one of the places in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area where a Northern Leopard Frog could be sighted?

The Chappell Marsh, the permanent wetlands of the West Swale contain water all the time. But where are the temporary wetlands located? This is exactly where the frogs are singing their merry songs. This area for the lands east of Chappell Marsh in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is marked as a yellow oval on the attached map. The Northern Leopard Frog, sings just to the west of the southwest off leash recreation area.

FrogMap
Northern Leopard Frog, Rana Pipiens Map

Just as farmers watch the weather; “In dry years, arable agriculture can fail over large parts of the province, whilst in wet years, flooding has caused widespread damage to rural and urban infrastructure.” “(Pomeroy, 2005)

So, too, do the frogs seem to watch the weather. During dry years such as those experienced 2015, 2016, and 2017 there were no frogs heard at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. However in 2013 and 2014 frogs were a delight to the years, especially as the Northern Leopard Frog is a species of Special Concern. As the weather cycles in the province, it can be expected that another year of flooding may follow the very dry years experienced 2015, 2016, and 2017. The newspapers report the flooding damaging crops, basements and highways however the glorious thing which is missed on the years of high water tables, is that the frogs come back!

 

There are definitely other areas, such as where the old grid road is being swallowed up by Chappell Marsh near the road turn off to Chappell Marsh Conservation Area. The old grid road is partially submerged, making it the perfect habitat for frogs [and ducks] as well.

Now then, it would be a very intriguing for a herpetologist, volunteer ‘Steward of Saskatchewan’ or conservation officer to engage in a project to walk with a GPS app which records altitude. This project would scan the entirety of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and ‘George Genereux’ Urban Regional park for altitude levels similar to the altitude of the meadow west of the South West Off Leash Recreation Area. Other areas which provide a rich habitat for the Northern Leopard Frog could be identified in this method for the areas west of Chappell Marsh and in ‘George Genereux’ Urban Regional park. In this way during years of flooding the Northern Leopard Frog could be surveyed and counted in identified Frog zones. And accordingly in the years of drought, the environment could remain undisturbed awaiting their safe return. 🙂

Perhaps, just perhaps, this would be a way to ensure the Northern Leopard Frog’s survival. An altitude test may just help to find the temporary wetlands conducive to the frog’s habitat, and could then be protected from development. Either that, or developers would need wait until years of high water tables before developing land to determine the habitat for frogs.

Saskatchewan cycles through years of drought and high water tables. The years 2013, and 2014, saw very, very high rain levels, spring run off and flooding. Chappell Marsh itself washed out a grid road, and water pumps were allocated to try to divert the flooding away from Saskatchewan Highway 7 west of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and CN Chappell Yards. The cycle of very wet conditions was also seen historically over the years 2005, and 2006. (Garnet, 2012)

July 13, 2014, Emily Chan reported “In Saskatchewan, it’s estimated that a total of up to 3 million acres, including some farmland, have already flooded.” “Highways closed and communities declared states of emergency …, ” reports the Canadian Press on June 30, 2014 due to a deluge of rain.

“From too much rain to not enough — and everyone baking in the heat — communities smashed weather records in July across Saskatchewan.”(Climenhaga, 2017) Whereas, in direct contrast to the years of 2013 and 2014, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada reported that 2016 was the hottest year on record, replacing the record set in 2015. In 2017, “Saskatchewan farmers say drought conditions in some parts of the province are the worst they have seen in decades “(Bridges, 2017) “Record-breaking temperatures and extremely low rainfalls across Western Canada are causing chaos for farmers and firefighters this summer as they grapple with the worst drought in more than a decade.” {Sikierska, 2015) Drought also ravaged Saskatchewan over the years 2001 to 2002. (Garnet, 2012)

“Nowhere else in Canada does the lack or excess of water cause such widespread concern, nor are there many Canadian environments subject to greater seasonal change in precipitation and surface-water storage.”(Pomeroy, 2005)
Drought years have been recorded as 1961, 1967, 1979, 1980, 1985, 1988, 2003, 2009. Whereas, the flood years are reported as 1965, 1977, 1986, 1991, 1993, 1999, 2005, 2010. (Garnet, 2012)
Taiwan is privileged with the humid and rainy habitats favorable for frogs, and the profuse rain providing the frogs a long reproduction stage makes Taiwan one of the best places for frog-watching.”{Government of Taiwan}  And it follows, that in Saskatchewan, the frogs, also fare better during the years the province cycles into a year with a high water table, rain and humidity.  Just as the Marsh Marigold (Caltha palustris) is native to marshes, fens, ditches and wet woodland in temperate regions, the marsh marigold does not raise its yellow head in the years of drought, nor do the Northern Leopard Frogs sing merrily in the wetlands.  In the case of frogs, and marsh marigolds, both flora and fauna await seasons of moisture, and hunker down when drought and desert-like conditions appear.
“The trees and vegetation which cover the land surface of the Earth and delight the eye, are therefore performing vital tasks incumbent upon the vegetable world in nature. The glorious rich, colourful, quilted covering of vegetation is not there merely to feed and please us. Its presence is essential to Earth as an organism. It is the first condition to Earth as an organism. It is the first condition of all life; it is the ‘skin of the Earth, for without it there can be no water and, therefore, no life. ” Richard St. Barbe Baker.

Bibliography

2016 Annual Report of Agroclimate Conditions Across Canada Government of Canada Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

Bridges, Alicia. Sask. farmers say drought conditions worst in decades. Farmers, ranchers face tough season due to hot, dry weather. CBC News.

Chan, Emily. Prairie farmers frustrated as flooding drowns crops. Ctv News. July 13, 2014

Climenhaga, Christy. Regina experiences driest July in 130 years. July topped the charts for hot and dry weather in southern Saskatchewan. CBC News. Aug. 1, 2017

Cross, Brian. Rising waters wash away land, farmers’ futures . The Western Producer. May 7, 2015

Flooding, highway closures as heavy rain pounds Prairies Canadian Press. June 30, 2014.

Garnett, Ray and Madhav Khandekar. From Drought to Wet Cycles The Changing Climate of the Canadian Prairies. May 3, 2012.

Pomeroy, John, Dirk de Boer and Lawrence Martz. Hydrology and Water Resources of Saskatchewan. Centre for Hydrology Report #1. Department of Geography, University of Saskatchewan February 2005.

Reeve warns flood water could flow over Hwy 11 in Lumsden area CBC News. May 5, 2013

Saskatchewan flooding: 37 communities declare state of emergency CBC News. June 30 2014

Sask. Flooding >Flood-battered roads crumbling around eastern Sask. Culverts, bridges, train tracks washed out over a wide area CBC News. July 2, 2014

Siekierska, Alicja. Hot, dry and disastrous. Western Canada’s drought is taking a toll. Edmonton Journal. July 25, 2015

Top ten weather stories for 2010: Story three. From Dry to Drenched on the Prairies. Government of Canada. Environment and Climate Change Canada.

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
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

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

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

Facebook: South West Off Leash Recreation Area SW OLRA

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Tagged Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Twitter: St Barbe Baker

Contact the Meewasin Valley Authority in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. The MVA has begun a Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund. If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund (MVA RSBBAA trust fund)”. Post to MVA 402 Third Avenue South Saskatoon, SK S7K 3G5 Please and thank you!

Membership in the Saskatoon Nature Society “supports nature conservation projects and [the society] is an active advocate for the preservation of plant and animal habitats”.

Please contemplate joining the SOS Elms coalition ~ an active group interested in forest management~ or make a donation to “Save our Saskatchewan” [SOS] Elms ~ leave a message to support the afforestation area 😉

1./ Learn.

2./ Experience

3./ Do Something: ***

“We forget that we owe our existence to the presence of Trees. As far as forest cover goes, we have never been in such a vulnerable position as we are today. The only answer is to plant more Trees – to Plant Trees for Our Lives.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker

Saskatoon Green Infrastructure Program

You can gauge a country’s wealth, its real wealth, by its tree cover.
Richard St. Barbe Baker

Green Infrastructure “is a network providing the “ingredients” for solving urban and climatic challenges by building with nature”. The main components of this approach include stormwater management, climate adaptation, less heat stress, more biodiversity, food production, better air quality, sustainable energy production, clean water and healthy soils, as well as the more anthropocentric functions such as increased quality of life through recreation and providing shade and shelter in and around towns and cities.”[*]

“The fate of an individual or a nation will always be determined by the degree of his or its harmony with the forces and laws of Nature and the universe.  Man is not alone in the universe but is surrounded by sources of power, harmony and knowledge.  The fullness of life depends upon man’s harmony with the totality of the natural cosmic laws.  Our individual evolution is a job that has to be carried on day by day by each individual himself.  It is a livelong task.”Richard St. Barbe Baker

“Green infrastructure refers to any natural or built systems that provide ecological benefits and help to maintain pre-development hydrology. It encompasses natural features like streams, wetlands, forests, and parks, as well as engineered systems that manage urban runoff.”[***]

The West Swale is an important pre-requIsite for the City of Saskatoon, as this low lying area protects both agricultural and urban neighbourhoods from flooding. The afforestation area also sequesters carbon emissions, improving the air. The soil and water quality also benefits from the woodland environment.

Environmental benefits include ”

  • Increase carbon sequestration
  • improve air quality
  • additional recreational space
  • efficient land use
  • flood protection
  • drinking water source protection
  • replenish groundwater
  • improve watershed health
  • protect or restore wildlife habitat
  • reduce sewer overflow events
  • restore impaired waters
  • meet regulatory requirements for receiving waters”[**]

By utilizing green infrastructure, the city of Saskatoon has an ecological base for sound social, economic, and environmental health and well-being. In the case of the West Swale and the afforestation areas, the green infrastructure, is supported by wetlands, so it may be also referred to as blue or “blue-green” infrastructure.

Economic benefits include; ”

  • reduce hard infrastructure construction costs
  • maintain aging infrastructure
  • increase land values
  • encourage economic development
  • reduce energy consumption and costs
  • increase life cycle cost savings”[**]

The afforestation area is a splendid example of urban forestry at its finest, and has the capacity to reduce energy usage costs, and may help to manage storm water and runoff. Physical activity and the reduction of stress are among the health benefits of urban green space.

Social benefits are: ”

  • “Establish urban greenways
  • provide pedestrian and bicycle access [recreation]
  • create attractive streetscapes and rooftops that enhance livability and urban green space
  • educate the public about their role in stormwater management
  • urban heat island mitigation”[**]

The meeting on May 29, 2017 showed a forward thinking City of Saskatoon embracing concepts of green infrastructure which will be applied to the long range planning of the Blairmore Sector Plan. Such a proposal brings the green infrastructure home for the neighbourhood planning of the city. According to the report, “the purpose of the Green Infrastructure is to develop an integrated approach to planning for and maintaining a sustainable, biodiverse city by considering natural and supportive areas as part of an ecological system.” As the Blairmore Sector Plan moves forward, natural and naturalized areas will be duly inventoried. As the plan develops, the community will be engaged for public engagement.

With a green infrastructure program, communities unite in an effort to preserve watersheds, wildlife habitats, and parks, to better protect the environment maintaining wildlife diversity while benefiting quality of life, helping people to connect with nature, increase health benefits of spending time in nature, while having access to clean air, and water. Once fully developed, the green infrastructure program have the potential for supporting both recreational and conservation activities that will have positive impacts far beyond the immediate community.

“For in the true nature of things, if we rightly consider, every green tree is far more glorious than if it were made of gold and silver”. ~Martin Luther

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

FCM – Green Municipal Fund What we fund

** Green Infrastructure Case Studies Municipal Policies for Managing Stormwater and Green Infrastructure (EPA 841 F 10 004)

Green Infrastructure | Help Build Sustainable Communities ESRI

Infrastructure Canada – Green Infrastructure. Government of Canada Investing in Green Infrastructure.

Green Infrastructure Webcase Series. United STates Environmental Protection Agency.

Green Infrastructure Partnership Launches ‘Celebrating Green Infrastructure Program’ Waterbucket.ca [For further information on Green Infrastructure and success stories in British Columbia – Guidance Documents and Resources The partnership for Water Sustainability in BC video]
* Green Infrastructure Wikipedia.

Inquiry
Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

*** Sustainable Technologies Evaluation Program. Urban Runoff and Green Infrastructure. Sustainable Technologies Evaluation Program 2016.

What is Green Infrastructure? United States Environmental Protection Agency.

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 is the “Skin” of the earth, for without it there can be no water and, therefore, no life.” ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
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

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

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

Facebook: South West Off Leash Recreation Area SW OLRA

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Tagged Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Twitter: St Barbe Baker

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1./ Learn.

2./ Experience

3./ Do Something: ***

“. “I don’t have a bucket list but my bike-it list is a mile long.” – unknown” For the recreation buff

Further Acknowledgements

‘I will have nothing to do with this destruction of life, I will play no part in this devastation of the
land, I am determined to live and work for peaceful construction for I am morally responsible for the world of today and the
generations of tomorrow.'” ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

Acknowledgements

It is a true honour and privilege to recognize the valuable contributions, time and efforts put forward by a number of concerned citizens in Saskatoon. There is no denial, that we acknowledged in 2016 those who started the journey as Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and now it is time in 2017, to again recognize the stakeholders who have a vested interest in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. It is fantastic to continue to again recognize and appreciate the support of the stakeholders and interested parties who came forward in 2016, the interested groups and individuals have evolved and overlap into 2017,  the support of all interested parties is truly appreciated.  The Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is truly richer for their consideration and assistance. Commendations to these amazing people and groups who respect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, groups and communities in 2016 and 2017 and those yet to come. In no particular order….

CarraganaFlower.JPG

The Montgomery Place Community Association are amazing stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Leslee Newman, President, and Trish Schmidt, Director, of the Montgomery Place Community Association, Ben Schmidt, Barb Riddle and all of its members have become stewards as well for the afforestation area, initializing the cleanup in 2015, and remaining on board to preserve the afforestation area, the ecology and wildlife habitat.

Jeff Hehn, Fatlanders FatTire Brigade (FFTB) Ambassador, and the members of this group are stewards acting in a protective service capacity educating the afforestation area community on security and safety and providing monitoring for a safe and secure area that the FFTB can bicycle in. The FFTB have also reached out to the community for “donations in kind” and engage in fund-raising for the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund”, as well as offering their time in a volunteer capacity for the furtherance of the “Man of Trees“ winter trail network at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Ron, has continued his volunteer service to maintain the tracks and trails over the long winter months, providing a grooming service after the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is covered in a deep blanket of snow.

Constable Xiang community liason officer alongside officers of the Saskatoon City Police, have provided protective services to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The area is patrolled in person and by the air to mitigate illegal trespass.

Further to the protective services of the Saskatoon City Police, the Corman Park Police Service and the Sask Valley Regional RCMP Warman Detachment cluster have come out to provide protective services to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The combined efforts of these law enforcement personnel who are alert to the potential of crime provide a safe and vibrant community in the afforestation area. Citizens with such wonderful support are thus willing and able to look out for one another’s interests in the afforestation area.

The Meewasin Valley Authority as Stewards of the Saskatchewan River Valley have provided direction, and support in an enormous capacity as Verity Moore-Wright at the MVA has kindly partnered with the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area as financial stewards ensuring that all private and public donations to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund MVA RSBBAA” serve to enhance and protect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area environment.

Additionally, Renny Grilz of the Meewasin Valley Authority provides wisdom, direction and guidance to the Stewards as an ecologist who has manages conservation areas for biodiversity across the prairie provinces and has a specialization in native plants.

The Honourable Hilary Gough, city councillor for Ward 2 in Saskatoon met with stakeholders who have a vested interest in this area of Saskatoon. Hilary Gough takes this ecological area very seriously, and was grateful for the opportunity to listen, reflect, and consider the information coming forward from a diverse group of individuals joined to support the afforestation area which was protected in perpetuity.

The City of Saskatoon very kindly supported the previous clean up efforts, covering the enormous tipping fees, and the charge of securing a Loraas bin on site. Additionally, following the Committee meeting of July 2016 and the ensuing City Council meeting of August 2016, the City of Saskatoon kindly placed out a number of Jersey Barriers on site to mitigate vehicular traffic. The City of Saskatoon currently includes the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, the South West Off Leash Recreation Area in the ongoing South West Sector planning. The City of Saskatoon Urban Forestry Program undertook a tree inventory to determine the health of the forest, and future direction in regards to the woodlands. Further to this, the City of Saskatoon is currently undertaking a City wetlands inventory, as well as they are writing up a formal report for the South West Sector and the “master plan” of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Valerie Martz, President of the Saskatoon Nature Society is very proud that the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is included in the new edition of their book, “Nature and Viewing Sites In and Around Saskatoon”. The public awareness of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, Saskatoon’s Best Kept Secret, is invaluable, and is currently the new direction forward being adopted by the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

The urban foresters of the SOS Elms Coalition, “Save our Saskatoon” Elms are engaged, active and concerned supporters of this urban forest of Saskatoon, the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Their wisdom, and combined practical experience in regards to how to respect the afforestation area are truly appreciated.

Rick Huziak, representing the Northeast Swale Watchers and Candace Savage, spokesperson for the North East Swale Watchers and co-founder of “Wild about Saskatoon” support the efforts to enhance the West Swale wetlands environment and the woodlands of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The Northeast Swale Watchers are truly examples to follow and as his Worship, City of Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark said “generations from now, people will be grateful for the environmental reserve designation, intended to increase protection of the swale.” The past experience of the Northeast Swale Watchers has been a guiding beacon for the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area when it comes to protecting the West Swale and the afforestation area.

Chelsey Skeoch, Watershed Education Coordinator, South Saskatchewan River Watershed Stewards are very receptive to also working alongside the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area in preserving and conserving the biodiversity and health of the eco-system and wetlands.

Barbara Hanbidge who has been Ducks Unlimited Area Biologist, Education Specialist and Saskatoon Area Manager for Ducks Unlimited is an informed and supportive stakeholder for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Ducks Unlimited owns and manages the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area directly south and across the street from the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The 148 acres of land at the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area has flourished under Ducks Unlimited growing into an outdoor classroom providing educational programming on conservation of prairie wetland habitat. Chappell Marsh is a Class IV permanent wetland with its southern extension in the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area, and straddling Cedar Villa Road, Chappell Marsh continues on north through the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area affording a prime and well-developed wetlands habitat with emergent vegetation which supports unique and varied waterfowl. On consideration of the northern portion of Chappell Marsh, it should be an honour to support the conservation efforts undertaken by Ducks Unlimited in the southern portion of Chappell Marsh. The waterfowl are unaware of the human arbitrary title and water designations, the waterfowl are relying on a secure water habitat for foraging and breeding.

The Honourable Sheri Benson, Member of Parliament for Saskatoon West was very engaged with the direction that the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area were taking. Sheri Benson offered to check into the availability of any support for the concerns raised to protect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area at the Federal level.

Nicky Breckner, president of the Mount Royal Community Association was enthralled with the size of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. As a current off leash dog walker at the South West off leash recreation area, she was also very grateful that the City of Saskatoon was blessed with semi-wilderness habitat at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area and means to explore it further.

Megan Van Buskirk for the Saskatchewan Environmental Society realized that the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, truly sounds like an important area to protect and was glad to network with the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Penny McKinlay & Andrew McKinlay of EcoFriendly Sask, dedicated to promoting and protecting our natural habitat, are proud to support the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and continue to keep up to date with the progress being undertaken at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Ross Harwood president of Cedar Villa Estates (Rural Municipality of Corman Park 344) is very supportive of the positive changes occurring in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area.  Mandy Bellrose as the neighbourhood watch representative for Cedar Villa Estates regularly walks the adjacent Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area to build a safe and vibrant community and environment at the afforestation area. With an ebb and flow of information, communities, afforestation area users and law enforcement officials can work together for solutions in making the afforestation area a safe place to walk, to relax or to engage in recreational or environmental activities. “A trusted neighbour is one of the most effective crime prevention tools ever created. SPS

The afforestation area is truly built on the strength of its stewards and spokespersons. David Kirton, the City of Saskatoon Off Leash Recreation Area liason for the South West off leash recreation area also recognized the bonding between the City, the afforestation area and SW OLRA community to reduce and mitigate illegal trespass. This is probably one of the most significant things that the average citizen as part of the larger community can do to lessen the risks, it is through such empowered citizens that community efforts resonate with success in building a safe and vibrant afforestation and wetlands community.

The community of off leash dog walkers, have been very supportive of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The individual casual off leash dog walkers are very appreciative of being offered the opportunity to walk their dogs off leash at the south west off leash recreation area, and do indeed come forward to volunteer, to clean up, to engage in conversation in support of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The walkers of the SW OLRA recognize the name sake of Dr. Richard St. Barbe Baker, L.L.D, O.B.E. and time and time again, they are impressed with the forestry and humanitarian work accomplished by St. Barbe, and feel honoured to be a part of the afforestation experience with a chance to view the diverse biodiversity of the area.

Murray Gross, YWCA, and as the local Saskatoon communications officer for the international festival Jane’s Walk came out to observe the civic minded discussion put forward by the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Jane Jacobs, author and urban activist, who believed that communities should be planned for the people by the people. “Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.” ~Jane Jacobs

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has been a powerful supporter of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Latter-day Saints missionaries serve in public affairs serving to build relationships with communities. The inspiration of the missionaries who came from across North America offering their time and talents made a dedicated commitment to come from across the land to meet in Saskatoon to offer compassionate service during the clean up effort. Thank you to the missionaries who provided to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area their multi-faceted humanitarian services.

Julia Adamson, resident of Meadowgreen, and SW off leash dog walker, SOS Elms Coalition, Saskatoon Nature Society, Nature Saskatchewan, Saskatoon Environmental Society and MVA partner as one of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area came forward in January of 2015 to speak before City Council to save the forest and protect the environment in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area and its attendant West Swale Wetlands.  Adamson also raised clean up funds for the Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund, and contributed time and energy to the 2016 clean up, and subsequent follow up endeavours.

Since this time the community efforts to protect and respect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area for our children and grandchildren have resonated with the heart of Saskatoon. Every instance when visitors and residents of the City of Saskatoon come to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, they are amazed by the ecological bio-diversity, and appreciate seeing the biodiversity of the West Swale wetlands – the north end of Chappell Marsh and its associated tributaries and marshes- the Riparian woodlands, and the modified and native grasslands of the area. The various and diverse groups and stakeholders appreciate the co-ordinated approach being afforded by the City of Saskatoon, the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and the Meewasin Valey Authority (MVA).

The Stewards previously acknowledged as well as these groups and individuals listed above have all united as a group – the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker – speaking up for positive change at the Richard St. Barbe Baker and embracing that the afforestation is preserved in perpetuity for the visitors and residents of the City of Saskatoon.

Saskatoon, truly shines with active groups and concerned citizens coming forward and taking action for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The response to the preservation and conservation efforts begun at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and West Swale have been very encouraging.

The next action plan is to network and connect with citizens of the City of Saskatoon about the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, the concerns of the many and several stewards, and the method going forward is to encourage all users and visitors to have a deep and abiding respect for the afforestation area.

There has been an amazing community response from several community associations as they also respect and support the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area; Montgomery Place Community Association, Parkridge, Fairhaven, Meadowgreen, Holiday Park, King George, Mount Royal, Dundonald Community Associations. The neighbouring rural areas in the Rural Municipality of Corman Park and residents of the hamlet of Cedar Villa Estates, also are very active and engaged stewards and stakeholders.

To everyone’s help, insight and knowledge, each word of wisdom, each hand offered to help is most graciously appreciated. It is with sincerest apologies if anyone has not been mentioned and their thoughts, insight and advice not noted at the website. Please drop us a line Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area if you have any further words of advice or concerns about the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

So with the greatest of thanks to all of those, past, present and future, who have taken to heart the need to clean the afforestation area, to protect the rich bio-diversity of the eco-system, to sustain the environment at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation and who come together as a safe, rich and vibrant Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area community. Your further thoughts, words, and deeds are much appreciated. The afforestation area needs as many stewards to preserve and conserve this amazing site as is possible.

“If a man loses one-third of his skin he dies; if a tree loses one-third of its bark, it too dies. If the Earth is a ‘sentient being’, would it not be reasonable to expect that if it loses one-third of its trees and vegetable covering, it will also die? 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 the ‘skin’ of the earth, for without it there can be no water, and therefore, no life.

Of earth’s 30 billion acres, nine billion acres has already become desert. Ancient wisdom has taught that earth itself is a sentient being and feels the behaviour of man upon it I look at it in this way: If man loses 1/3 of his skin he dies; the plastic surgeons Say he has “had it”. It a tree loses 1/3. Of its bark, it dies. Ask a botanist or dendrologist, and he will confirm that, and I Submit that it the earth loses 1/3 of its natural tree cover it will die. When its green mantle of trees has been removed the spring water table sinks. Once the rhythm of the natural forest has been broken it is a difficult-and a lengthy operation-to restore it. Much as you may want to restore the indigenous tree cover immediately it may require a rotation of exotics as nurse trees. ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

“This generation may either be the last to exist in any semblance of a civilized world or that it will be the first to have the vision, the bearing 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 theland, I am determined to live and work for peaceful construction for I am morally responsible for the world of today and the generations of tomorrow.'” ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
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
Facebook: StBarbeBaker
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Facebook: South West OLRA
Off leash dog park Valley Road Saskatoon!
If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque please to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund” (MVA RSBBAA trust fund) and mail it to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area c/o Meewasin Valley Authority, 402 Third Ave S, Saskatoon SK S7K 3G5. Thank you kindly!
Twitter: St Barbe Baker

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World Wildlife Day ~ Conservation

Wildlife Montage. Red Winged Blackbird, White Tailed Deer Fawn, Garter Snake, JackRabbit, Mallard Ducklings, Black Crowned Night Heron
Wildlife Montage. Red Winged Blackbird, White Tailed Deer Fawn, Garter Snake, JackRabbit, Mallard Ducklings, Black Crowned Night Heron

Gifford Pinchot centered on  conservation as follows; ” The principles which the word Conservation has come to embody are not many, and they are exceedingly simple. I have had occasion to say a good many times that no other great movement, has ever achieved such progress in so short a time, or made itself felt in so many directions with such vigor and effectiveness, as the movement for the conservation of natural resources.

Forestry made good its position in the United States before the conservation movement was born. As a forester I am glad to believe that conservation began with forestry, and that the principles which govern the Forest Service in particular and forestry in general are also the ideas that control conservation.”

Gifford Pinchot; BA degree from Phillips Exeter Academy and Yale University (1899), MA (1901) and LLD (1925) degrees from Yale, MA degree (1904) from Princeton University, ScD degree (1907) from Michigan Agricultural College, LLD degree (1909) from McGill University, LLD degree (1923) from Pennsylvania Military College, and LLD degree (1931) from Temple University. Pinchot was forester and chief of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Division of Forestry, founded the School of Forestry at Yale University, and also the Society of American Foresters and the National Conservation Association of which he became President. Author of A Primer of Forestry (1899), The Fight for Conservation (1909), The Training of a Forester (1914), and Breaking New Ground, an autobiography (1947).

Pinchot continues about conservation, “In addition to the principles of development and preservation of our resources there is a third principle. It is this: The natural resources must be developed and preserved for the benefit of the many, and not merely for the profit of a few.

The conservation idea covers a wider range than the field of natural resources alone. Conservation means the greatest good to the greatest number for the longest time. One of its great contributions is just this, that it has added to the worn and well-known phrase, “the greatest good to the greatest number,” the additional words “for the longest time,” thus recognizing that this nation of ours must be made to endure as the best possible home for all its people.

Conservation advocates the use of foresight, prudence, thrift, and intelligence in dealing with public matters, for the same reasons and in the same way that we each use foresight, prudence, thrift, and intelligence in dealing with our own private affairs. It proclaims the right and duty of the people to act for the benefit of the people. Conservation demands the application of common-sense to the common problems for the common good.

We are prosperous because our forefathers bequeathed to us a land of marvellous resources still unexhausted. Shall we conserve those resources, and in our turn transmit them, still unexhausted, to our descendants? Unless we do, those who come after us will have to pay the price of misery, degradation, and failure for the progress and prosperity of our day. When the natural resources of any nation become exhausted, disaster and decay in every department of national life follow as a matter of course. Therefore the conservation of natural resources is the basis, and the only permanent basis, of national success.

The conservation issue is a moral issue, and the heart of it is this: For whose benefit shall our natural resources be conserved—for the benefit of us all, or for the use and profit of the few? This truth is so obvious and the question itself so simple that the attitude toward conservation of any man in public or private life indicates his stand in the fight for public rights. ”

Saskatoon community volunteers all came together three times for major trash clean ups in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area in the southwest sector of Saskatoon in 2015 and 2016 to better the environment and promote conservation practices.  On March 3 World Wildlife Day,  honour the afforestation areas, and continue to monitor, and conserve the semi-wilderness wildlife habitat at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.  Though the volunteers were elated to see 13,100 kilograms (28,875 pounds) 1 2 3 of trash removed from the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and did, indeed come out more than once to clean up the environment, the woodlands and Chappell Marsh West Swale Wetlands.  It would surely be wonderful to engage in conservation practices and center community efforts to maintain the wetlands and associated riparian woodlands, and thus honour the semi-wilderness wildlife habitat corridor and not have a repeated need to engage in costly volunteer clean ups.

The vanishing wildlife, its extermination and preservation came to the forefront in the article World Wildlife Day March 3. How can conservation efforts continue past March 3, continue onward after World Wildlife Day to conserve the habitats, forests, wetlands and resources?  Find out what you can do.

For More Conservation Information

Compliance and Enforcement Environment. Government of Saskatchewan.

Conservation Provincial Parks System.

Conservation Learning Centre | School Program

Ecosystem services (ES) Toolkit and Assessment for Decision Making “nature’s benefits” For Decision making

Government of Canada Publications.

HABISask stands for Hunting, Angling and Biodiversity Information of Saskatchewan

Ludlow, Sarah. How we can save our songbirds. Nature Conservancy of Canada. February 22, 2017

K-9 unit plays important role for Sask. conservation team
Cpl. Jamie Chartrand and partner Jaks help track people, evidence for Ministry of Environment
Feb 11, 2017

Managing Saskatchewan’s Wetlands

Ministry of the Environment Government of Saskatchewan.

Nature Conservancy of Canada. Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre Citizen Scientist observations required; Report a Woodland Caribou Sighting. Giant Lacewing Observations. Red Lily Beetle Observations. Species list and Species Conservation Rankings

Saskatchewan Prairie Conservation Action Plan

Sask Tip Turn in Poachers and those who violate resource and environmental laws.

Serving People and Wildlife ~ Protecting Saskatchewan’s resources. Saskatchewan Association of Conservation Oficers

DeFranza David. How conservation helps people too. Tree Hugger April 4, 2011

What you can do to help Government of Canada. Climate Change.

Wildlife Conservation SACO| Wildlife Species at Risk. Government of Saskatchewan.

Take Action WWF-World Wide Fund For Nature (also known as World Wildlife Fund)

Take Action Government of Canada. Environment Canada. About Environment and Climate Change Canada Services The Biosphere BioKits Take Action

What can you do? Government of Canada. BiodivCanada. Education and AwarenessWhat Can You Do?

What you can do WWF-World Wide Fund For Nature (also known as World Wildlife Fund)

“This generation may either be the last to exist in any semblance of a civilised world or that it will be the first to have the vision, the bearing 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, I am determined to live and work for peaceful construction for I am morally responsible for the world of today and the generations of tomorrow.’” ~ Richard St Barbe Baker

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Pinchot, Gifford USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center.

Seeking the Greatest Good. Pinchot Institute for Conservation. M“The mission of the Pinchot Institute is to strengthen forest conservation thought, policy, and action by developing innovative, practical, and broadly-supported solutions to conservation challenges and opportunities.”

Gifford Pinchot. National Parks.

Gifford Pinchot

I believe in oneness of mankind and of all living things and in the interdependence of each and all. I believe that unless we play fair to the Earth, we cannot exist physically on this planet. Unless we play fair to our neighbour, we cannot exist socially or internationally. Unless we play fair to better self, there is no individuality and no leadership. ~Richard St. Barbe Baker.

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
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
Facebook: StBarbeBaker
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Facebook: South West OLRA
If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque please to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund” (MVA RSBBAA trust fund) and mail it to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area c/o Meewasin Valley Authority, 402 Third Ave S, Saskatoon SK S7K 3G5. Thank you kindly!
Twitter: St Barbe Baker

Our task must be to free ourselves … by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty.~Albert Einstein

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Conservation studies for students

“Planting and growing increasing quantities of trees is the scientific solution to Earth’s environmental dilemma.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker

Over the summers of 2015 and 2016, community residents and youth came together to care for the environment at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, and this was indeed fantastic!  It is now truly heart-warming to see that educators and students have come together to learn about conservation careers and caring for nature

Treaty 4 Education Alliance on Learning the Land has created an alliance with Nature Conservancy of Canada. Embracing the culture of western science and traditional First Nations Knowledge, students are learning about conservation practices. Students learn about conservation careers and caring for nature.

“If we can send someone to the moon, we can clean our water,” says educator Carol Crowe

READ MORE…

“Planting and growing increasing quantities of trees is the scientific solution to Earth’s environmental dilemma.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker

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.
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
Facebook: StBarbeBaker
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Facebook: South West OLRA
Contact the Meewasin Valley Authority in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. The MVA has begun a Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund. If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund (MVA RSBBAA trust fund)”. Please and thank you!
Twitter: StBarbeBaker

“Man has lost his way in the jungle of chemistry and engineering and will have to retrace his steps, however painful this may be. He will have to discover where he went wrong and make his peace with nature. In so doing, perhaps he may be able to recapture the rhythm of life and the love of the simple things of life, which will be an ever-unfolding joy to him.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker