Well, the City of Saskatoon and Meewasin Valley Authority were right. Canvassing the afforestation areas does show that these semi-wilderness areas do provide habitats conducive to flora and fauna including species at risk. The count is up to around twenty species at risk at the current moment. Thank you to everyone using iNaturalist and helping to document the species in the afforestation areas.
The Government of Canada is collaborating with the Meewasin Valley Authority about the potential for the Meewasin Valley to become a National Urban Park. This initiative is one which would help protect biodiversity in urban centres, while providing urban residents with the capacity to connect with nature.
“Canada’s National Urban Parks Program is part of a broader southern strategy of restoration that includes natural infrastructure, tree planting and regeneration of wetlands, and is vital in the fight to stem the tide of rapid biodiversity loss.”
During this United Nations Decade on Restoration, certainly preventing, halting and reversing the degradation of ecosystems is much needed. It is terrifically exciting that the Meewasin Valley Authority and the Government of Canada are doing their part in restoration!
Well still no luck at finding the Missing Linden Tree, but an endangered species was located on the Sundays At Two bioblitz or Nature Connect adventure. Woodland Skipper Ochlodes sylvanoides napa is an adorable small butterfly that also has some moth like features in the appearance of its body. Though it is classified as a skipper. This little Woodland Skipper is not found in Saskatchewan, is tracked by the Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre.
This little Woodland Skipper is tracked by the Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre, and is considered S2 which translates to
At high risk of extinction or extirpation due to a very restricted range, very few populations, steep declines, threats or other factors.
Master Gardeners Association of British Columbia [MGABC} says “the name Ochlodes is Greek for turbulent or unruly, from the swift, erratic flight of the members of this genus. The name sylvanoides is derived from the Latin silva (woods or forest).” MGABC also confirms that the larvae feed on many species of grass, which makes the afforestation areas rather handy. The adults also like the nectar of Cirsium (thistles), Taraxacum officnale (Dandelion).
Wild About Saskatoon mentions that “the first 50 people to certify your back yard, garden, or school yard as a Pollinator Paradise will receive our beautiful Pollinator Paradise YXE sign (retail value $39.95) for free.”
Query? Should there be pollinator gardens planted in the two afforestation areas by making use of the Utility Right-Of-Ways? What would it mean? Checking out the ROW zones of the afforestation areas on Google Earth there would be:
There is the potential for a whopping 141,536 square meters of pollinator gardens at Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
There is also potential for another 33,682 square metes of pollinator gardens at George Genereux Urban Regional Park
What do you think? Is 175,218 square meters of pollinator paradise something which would show good environmental and pollinator-friendly management practices? Is it a good idea?
Already from the closure of the east side of Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area to motorized vehicular traffic, the number of native plants is exponentially increasing without motorized vehicles using the urban regional park as a road bringing in invasive plants from everywhere. There is starting to be a rebound with an increase in native plants, and numbers of species already – without an anthropogenic management plan, just letting Mother Nature do the native flora plantings!
There are a few more resources included as follows:
Budburst: Budburst brings together researchers, horticulturists, and community scientists on a shared journey to uncover the stories of plants affected by human impacts on the environment. Budburst tells these stories through data collection, data sharing, education, and personal connections.
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 using the e-mail friendsafforestation AT gmail.com, or by using e-transfers Please and thank you! Your donation and membership is greatly appreciated. Donate your vehicle to Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. to raise funds for afforestation areas. Click here to find out more. Members e-mail your contact information to be kept up to date! Canada Helps
You are a champion of species at risk and climate change.
Please make a special year-end gift today. The urban afforestation area spaces and the semi-wilderness habitat will benefit from the caring shown now and for tomorrow.
The Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas is a registered charity. We can issue a 2020 charitable receipt if you donate before the close of December 31, 2020. Paypal or E-transfer to firstname.lastname@example.org are means to facilitate your donation to the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc., or online via Canada Helps
To further support the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area or George Genereux Urban Regional Park please consider the donation of a gift of securities or even providing a legacy gift in your will.
Now is the time to care for the urban forest and wetlands in the afforestation areas which we love. In the words of Richard St. Barbe Baker let us “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.”
Thank you kindly for being a hero of conservation and urban forest protection. Your special year-end gift for nature goes a long way today.
Everyone on your holiday shopping list will love this meaningful gift! Give a perfect and thoughtful gift that changes lives. The Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. is dedicated to conserving and protecting the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas in the City of Saskatoon. We protect and care for these parcels of land to conserve it for future generations of wildlife and people. Your donation to protect these Afforestation Areas, will help us to care for this vital habitat in perpetuity. Your gifts and donations strengthens our abilities to protect the trees, land, waterways, and species in the afforestation areas.
Become a guardian of the forest by joining, or renewing your membership today. We are group of nurturing, caring people who have created a community in protecting our natural resources. Your membership provides us the means to benefit our critical work in protected this semi-wilderness habitat, and connect a growing and vibrant city and its residents with this green environment. There are numerous studies which show urban forests improve physical health and mental well-being. With the city growing and expanding, the need to protect urban greenspaces is more vital than ever before.
Donate $100 to conserve the afforestation area as trees are the largest and cheapest method of removing CO2 from the atmosphere mitigating climate change. Forests clean our air, our water, and regulate our climate. Forests help to manage and alleviate flooding.
Donate $90 to assist in the installation of interpretive signs and the creation of an afforestation area outdoor classroom for children across the City of Saskatoon.
Donate $75 to ensure 125m of wildlife friendly fence can be installed. This allows the deer fawns and moose calves to pass through without getting caught in the fence, or without being left behind.
Donate $60 to go towards the installation of a garbage receptacle to protect the semi- wilderness habitat without pollution in the environment. This installation will protect the natural areas at this amazing habitat.
Donate $50 in protection of habitat for bees and other pollinators which help keep our planet and our city green. They are facing habitat loss, and what a better place than the afforestation areas to protect their habitat where herbicides and pesticides are not in use.
Donate $40 which will go towards installation of a metal park identification sign and mitigate illegal motorized vehicle trespass and illegal trash dumping.
Sponsor a tree with $25 a month to enable the proper Afforestation Area protections are in place. Receive information about your tree. This is a gift that keeps on giving, and you can be a part of the effort to protect these trees in perpetuity.
Donate $20 to provide groups of volunteers with gloves and trash bags to conduct clean ups. Community volunteer clean ups go a long way to protect the woodlands, grasslands and wetlands.
A gift like these make a real difference. Make an impact with your gift, and help make the world a better place.
Protecting the environment, taking action on climate change, conservation and restoration for species at risk, all while enjoying nature it doesn’t get better than this! Take part in the launch of “Our Forest Returns Saskatoon” – a campaign to kickstart the amazing wonders of winter in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and out at George Genereux Urban Regional Park.
What is a Saskatoon Wild Forest Angel for the Our Forest Returns Saskatoon campaign? How does becoming a steward or guardian make a difference for nature in the City of Saskatoon afforestation areas?
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 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! Canada Helps
“The future of the planet concerns all of us, and all of us should do what we can to protect it. ” Wangari Maathai.
“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 nations 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.
Ontario takes the preservation of this endangered species very seriously and has compiled a management plan. The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources considers species at risk, natural, valued and protected, and to this end have documented ways to help the Horned Grebe. What does the Province of Saskatchewan say? The Species at Risk Act SARA, similarly has a recovery strategy. Committee On The Status Of Endangered Wildlife In Canada COSEWIC has an assessment and status report written up for the Horned Grebe Podiceps auritus. The Government of Canada has developed a species profile and action plan in its Species at Risk Act Action Plan Series.
“Mother nature has given us a strong signal through this pandemic: we must change our habits and slow down if we are going to continue living on this planet. It is a perfect time to make people realize on a global level that flattening the curve of climate change and environmental destruction is just as important as flattening the curve for COVID-19. It’s a perfect time to formulate and refine your ideas and put the planning and strategy in place to make them happen.” Marianna Muntianu UN Environment Program
The Saskatchewan Government reports; “Despite many programs focused on maintaining and enhancing wildlife populations, some species have become threatened with extinction and require special attention to help ensure their survival. The mission of the Saskatchewan species at risk program is to protect species from extirpation or extinction and to prevent new species from becoming threatened with extinction. ”
The Canadian-Saskatchewan Agreement on Species at Risk; “Species at risk protection and recovery in Saskatchewan will, to the extent possible, be designed and delivered in a manner tailored to address the ecological, social and economic circumstances of the province; Planning and actions to prevent species from becoming at risk, and to protect and recover species that have been identified as being at risk will be informed by the best available information on the biological status of a species, including scientific knowledge, community knowledge and aboriginal traditional knowledge”
So, as one can see, there are numerous plans and strategies in regards to the Horned Grebe. What exists Nationally, Provincially and Municipally for the other endangered species which exist in the afforestation area locally? Both the horned grebe and barred tiger salamander are listed as a species of special concern by the Committee On The Status Of Endangered Wildlife In Canada – an Independent Advisory Panel to the Minister Of Environment and Climate Change. The Red-necked Phalarope, Baird’s Sparrow and Grasshopper Sparrow are special concern, and Bobolink, Bank Swallow is threatened nationally under the federal Species at Risk Act SARA Schedule 1. According to Chet Neufeld, Executive Director Native Plant Society referencing “the provincial rare species database, there have been occurrences of endangered Whooping Cranes observed near the area in 2017 and an occurrence of Small Yellow Lady’s-slipper (date unknown)” (email Dec 25, 2019) The Small Yellow Lady’s Slipper was indeed confirmed with another sighting by the Saskatoon Nature Society.
At Nature Saskatchewan the Stewards of Saskatchewan program are calling for people to reach out to them with species at risk sightings as the spring season begins. If you have a sighting you would like to share please call 1-800-667-4668 (HOOT) or email a program staff member.
April 19, 2020 is the cutoff date for this crowd fundraiser should you care to do your part for the environment during Earth Month. Any funding raised would help to erect motorized vehicle barriers to protect the afforestation areas, and therefore protect the wetlands from illegal motorized vehicle trespass.
Shoreline edge of the permanent wetlands in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area with cattails and emergent vegetation in the summer showing illegal vehicle trespass, mudding, and ruts in the spring
with cattails and emergent vegetation in the summer showing illegal vehicle trespass, mudding, and ruts in the spring
Thanks for comments, likes and shares on facebook. And if you care to make a donation too 😉 Not only do vehicle mitigation barriers help the Horned Grebe, but they also help school children, class field trips from being run over from illegal motorized vehicle trespass, and the semi-wilderness habitat, and the other endangered species, as well as all the users to the afforestation areas! Raising funds to erect vehicle mitigation barriers, also places stops on illegal trash dumping, which is also way cool!
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
Species at risk: Mormon Metalmark (Apodemia mormo) butterfly depends on buckwheat host plant.
Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus) photo credit William Warby
Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias 42-52″ (105-130 cm) four feet standing.
The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) decided to proclaim 3 March, the day of the adoption of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), as World Wildlife Day.
“The preservation of animal and plant life, and of the general beauty of Nature, is one of the foremost duties of the men and women of to-day. No man has a right, either moral or legal, to destroy or squander an inheritance of his children that he holds for them in trust.
Wild life can be saved! The means by which it can be saved are: Money, labor and publicity.
Every possible means of preservation,—sentimental, educational and legislative,—must be employed. It is an imperative duty, because it must be performed at once, for otherwise it will be too late, speaks William T. Hornaday Sc.D., Director of the New York Zoologial Park, Author of “The American Natural History” and ex-president of the American Bison Society.
Do you know what Saskatchewan endangered wildlife species look like? Do you know what their habitat looks like? Do the flora and fauna listed here require wetlands, tall grasslands, arid plains, riparian woodlands, or mixed zones? Do you know the range in Saskatchewan where you may see these endangered species of Saskatchewan ~ north, south central, east, west? Today is the day for you, personally, to find out before it is too late! Can you identify the flora and fauna in the semi-wilderness wildlife habitat of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area of the city of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan?
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.
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!
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
“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