If you come to visit SṈIDȻEȽ (Tod Inlet) over the next few weeks, you will be able to witness the excavation of large tracts of invasive species as part of the continuing work by SeaChange Marine Conservation Society and Tsartlip First Nation to restore health and balance to the local plant communities.

People and machinery will be working in this area over the coming months, removing invasive species (such as Himalayan blackberry) and replanting with native species such as black cottonwood, bigleaf Maple and red alder trees. Our intention is to restore these areas to more natural ecosystems by planting species that have long provided food, tools and medicines for the W̱SÁNEĆ First Nations peoples, as well as habitats for local birds and animals.

We will begin by restoring the complex biological community in the soil. Did you know that just one tablespoon of healthy soil contains more organisms than there are humans on the earth? These local life forms range from bacteria, fungi and protozoa, to the more complex nematodes and micro-arthropods, to the visible earthworms, insects and small vertebrates. This community of life is called “The Soil Food Web”.

Past disturbances from industrial activities have left much of the soil at SṈIDȻEȽ missing some of the life forms required to keep the soil food web working. In order to restore balance, we will be applying “compost tea” to add high populations of these beneficial organism. We will also be covering the restoration sites with deep layers of leaf mulch, which will protect the soil from erosion and feed the returning soil food web. By restoring health to the soil we will give the native plant communities the ability to thrive.

20160309_140125[1]The excavation work will be on Wednesday, March 9th and Thursday, March 10th near the posted signs. W̱SÁNEĆ youth from ȽÁU,WELṈEW̱ Tribal School, local groups and community volunteers will be planting native plants in these new restoration sites soon afterwards. We welcome volunteers to help with planting and placing leaf litter.

Watch how the area will change. Are there new birds that you start to notice? Are there more butterflies and insects? What other changes do you see?

This work is made possible by partnerships with Tsartlip First Nation and BC Parks, with the support of local youth and community volunteers. Funding sources include Recreational Fisheries Conservation Partnership Program and the Pacific Salmon Foundation

Please help us monitor these sites! You can send copies of your photos of the changing landscape to seachange@shaw.ca .

If you have questions or concerns, please contact:

SeaChange Marine Conservation Society (250 652-1662) seachange@shaw.ca