Become a Streamkeeper!
Join instructor Heather Leschied for an incredible hands-on learning opportunity you won’t want to miss. This is citizen scientist training that is required should you wish to take part in or learn more about ERA's community based water monitoring efforts. The weekend course is valued at $225 but we are pleased to be able to offer it to Elk Valley residents for a nominal fee of $20. Training will take place on Alexander Creek east of Sparwood. Contact us for more information.
Saturday, August 18: 9am - 5pm
Sunday, August 19: 9am - 5pm
Participants will come away from the two-day workshop with an understanding of how to conduct stream invertebrate surveys, do stream health assessment and even how to trap and identify juvenile fish.
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Why do we need ERA?
Many people are disconnected from their water – as long as it comes out of the tap and remains high quality. A surprise to many are the issues facing the Elk River ranging from impacts related to climate change affecting supply, point and non-point source pollution, and high level of community water consumption. The Elk River recently was upgraded from 8th to 7th on the Outdoor Recreation Council’s 2012 BC Endangered Rivers list (in 2010 it moved from 11th to 8th), blaming development, increasing selenium levels and wildlife migration issues for the upgrading.
ERA promotes an action-oriented approach to water decision-making using a systems view that connects science with community knowledge and the human experience. Water science is developed and enacted by citizens in partnership with conventional scientists supporting a water literate community who understands the quality and quantity of their water.
- Watershed Dialogue to engage engage in a proactive conversation about the Elk River watershed exploring collective decision-making framework where water quality and quantity is a core value. We will be discussing issues facing the Elk River, and creating a community vision for a healthy watershed.
- Swim, Drink, Fish Festival- A celebration and clean-up of the Elk River. Will include Streamkeeper's monitoring on Lizard Creek, arts and crafts for kids, 'Our River Rocks' Celebration at Rip'n Richards and a photo contest on September 24, 2011. River clean-up and family fun at the Fernie Aquatic Centre on BC Rivers Day, September 25, 2011.
- FLOW Think Tank Series- Topics are based on community input from FLOW conversations. The series will include a 'Float & Fish' raft trip; a tour of Elk River sinkholes demonstrating the interaction of the Elk River and groundwater; 'Watershed 101' will be an interactive, illustrated, engaging session aimed at increasing understanding of the Elk River watershed; and a 'Water Science Workshop' where interested people can get their hands and feet wet learning how to test for water health (i.e. pH level, dissolved oxygen, turbidity, water bugs, etc). Dates to be announced.
- Continue and improve the community-based water-monitoring on Lizard Creek. Spring & Fall 2012
- Water Wonders Workshop series on Wednesday afternoons in July 2012. For more information or to register stop by the Wildsight office in Fernie (891 2nd Ave).
- Elk River Literature Review Links - the most relevant information and links will soon be available here on this website.
- Water Wonder Series- Developed to target Young Naturalists (6-12 years old), this series will consist of 4 3-hour programs to engage kids in fun learning about water. Topics will include: Wonder What (water is- i.e. properties of water) on July 19, Wonder Who (organisms living in the water) on July 26, Wonder Where (water comes from) on August 2, Wonder How (we use/conserve water) on August 9.
- FLOW (Friends Living on Water) Conversation – facilitated by Elk Valley youth, discuss collective values, issues, opportunities and barriers for collaborating on this type of proactive coalition. March-February 2011
- H2Oh! Workshop – Integrated with community input from the FLOW Conversation, develop an workshop with key water decision makers, municipal staff, and community water champions, build capacity to make more informed and sustainable decisions that protect our watershed. May 2011
- Know your Watershed pilot with Fernie Secondary School - Grade 8 Science. Fall 2010
- Establish a community-based water-monitoring pilot on Lizard Creek starting with a Streamkeepers Course October 16-17, 2010.
- Sponsor the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup and Elk River Celebration on BC Rivers Day. September 26, 2010
- BCWF Wetlandkeepers Course in Sparwood. October 1-3, 2010
For more information click here to contact us.
Lee-Anne Walker, MA Environment and Management, BA Recreation Administration