We had another successful invasive species removal on Gerald Island last month. Volunteers came out between April 14-16 and combined forces to tackle English Ivy.
This project has been one of our longest-running initiatives and we are seeing significant progress with lots of native vegetation returning. We couldn’t be more excited about the support from our volunteers, who not only tackled English Ivy but also poor weather conditions and choppy seas. Big thanks to the BC Parks Foundation and Trans Canada Trail for helping with funds, tools and preparations as part of our Protect our Coast work.
The event was kicked off with excellent weather conditions. Calm seas and warmth from the sun poking through the clouds. Volunteers came out from Vancouver, Victoria, Nanaimo, Comox and more and stayed anywhere from one-to all three days. We could not be more excited about our little community of enthusiastic, caring and inspirational paddlers.
Gerald Island is within the traditional territory of the Snaw-naw-as First Nation. Gerald Island is located on the east coast of Vancouver Island. It sits less than one nautical mile off the coast of Nanoose Bay. This 12-hectare island was purchased in 2007 for $1,375,000 and became Gerald Island Provincial Park in 2013. This project is an ongoing collaboration between BC Parks and BC Marine Trails.
The park is a good example of the rocky coastal bluff ecosystem rarely found undisturbed in the Coastal Douglas-fir biogeoclimatic zone in the southern Strait of Georgia. Northern and California sea lions, bald eagles and various bird and marine species are found in the park. However, this unique ecosystem has been overtaken by English Ivy. Homesteaders who lived on the island brought the Ivy to the island. A choice that would have dire consequences for the local ecology in the future.