Tidal flows restored to upper Delkatla sanctuary

Fish and tidewater started returning to part of Delkatla Slough last week thanks to restoration work by Ducks Unlimited Canada.

Bruce Harrison, a biologist with the wildlife conservation group, says they replaced three old culverts under the east side of the emergency access road that connects Trumpeter Drive and Cemetery Road.

“The culverts were definitely undersized, and one of them was absolutely plugged and collapsed,” Harrison said, adding that very little tidewater or fish could pass through before, and when tides were three metres or higher.

Working with a Ducks Unlimited supervisor and biologist, Masset Services was contracted to dig out the old arched culverts and replace them with wider, oval-shaped ones that will allow water to flow even when the tides are lower.

It may take two years or so to see, but Harrison said eventually plants and animals in the 10.5-hectare section of upper marsh will switch back to more tide-loving species. More regular flooding should also thin out the red alder trees that were starting to take over the area.

“We’re trying to take it back to what it would have been prior to that road going in there,” Harrison said.

A final budget wasn’t ready at press time, but the project will likely cost between $100,000 and $250,000. It was funded by the Prince Rupert Port Authority, which was obliged to restore a wetlands area to offset some wetlands lost on Ridley Island during a recent expansion.

Ducks Unlimited will send a biologist to monitor the Delkalta Slough every few years to see how the restoration takes shape.

Since 1994, Ducks Unlimited and the Village of Masset have agreed to restore and protect Delkatla Slough, following the replacement of the former causeway to Masset with a $1-million bridge that allowed tidewater to flow into what is now a 290-hectare wildlife sanctuary with some 150 species of birds. Efforts to replace the causeway were led by the Delkatla Sanctuary Society, and supported by Ducks Unlimited, the provincial and federal governments, and other partners.

“It’s a unique salt marsh on the coast,” Harrison said.

“It’s got a very cool mix of birds that come in — not just your typical coastal birds, but a lot of what we call ‘vagrant’ species that get blown off-course from Asia or the Arctic that wind up there from time to time.”

Correction: This story has been updated to reflect the role of the Delkatla Sanctuary Society and other partners in the replacement of the former Masset causeway.

 

Just Posted

Haida Gwaii gets top spot in The World

It was already a nice Christmas present, but Keith Moore was really… Continue reading

McNeill fined again for illegal fishing

A local man with a long history of poaching has been convicted… Continue reading

Painting her way home

Janine Gibbons talks about all she learned illustrating Haida and Tlingit story books

Old Massett taps grassroots for community plan

Over coffee, kitchen tables, and community dinners, Old Massett is taking a… Continue reading

Subsea internet cable to link up Haida Gwaii

Cable to connect Haida Gwaii, Prince Rupert, Vancouver Island, Sunshine Coast with mainland network

B.C. cougar kitten rescued after mother struck by vehicle

Conservation Officers find home for young kitten found dehydrated and frostbitten near Williams Lake

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

B.C. woman who forged husband’s will gets house arrest

Princeton Judge says Odelle Simmons did not benefit from her crime

Women’s movement has come a long way since march on Washington: Activists

Vancouver one of several cities hosting event on anniversary of historic Women’s March on Washington

Liberals’ 2-year infrastructure plan set to take 5: documents

Government says 793 projects totalling $1.8 billion in federal funds have been granted extensions

Workers shouldn’t be used as ‘pawns’ in minimum wage fight: Wynne

Comments from Kathleen Wynne after demonstrators rallied outside Tim Hortons locations across Canada

John ‘Chick’ Webster, believed to be oldest living former NHL player, dies

Webster died Thursday at his home in Mattawa, Ont., where he had resided since 1969

Most Read