This morning Silas and I took the Todd Creek Watershed tour organized by the Peninsula Streams Society. I was transported back to this video from 2010!
I was elected in Central Saanich in November 2008, and the first person to call me was Denis Coupland. He wanted to introduce me to his work in the local watersheds and shorelines.
We met very soon after at the Prairie Inn in Saanichton and little did I know that it was the first step in my reconnection with SĆÁÁNEW̱, the Pacific salmon. I grew up on the docks in Brentwood Bay feeding the sea gulls and harbour seals the guts of our catch, and now I was beginning to understand my role as a local councillor in land use planning and how it impacted the circulation system we built our communities on.
Community development has significantly damaged local fish stocks. Destroy the habitat, homes for the fish to return to, and we also destroy all the benefits of a well functioning watershed surrounding our homes.
Even though many of the creeks and streams in Greater Victoria are now ditches and culverts, PIŚ (fish) are incredibly resilient, and as we have seen local stream keeper groups all over British Columbia have had success by strategically rebuilding the watershed.
Two years ago, Silas and his grade 3 class at Brentwood raised some ŦÁ¸WEN (coho) in a tank. He and his class fell in love with those fish. He reported on their status everyday and when they where ready, the whole Olsen family joined his class at Todd Creek to watch him release his fish.
Today we had a a chance to reconnect with our past together and to get some fresh air in our incredible community!
The watershed tour started at Maltby Lake to Prospect Lake, Todd Creek flats and waterway, ending at SṈIDȻEȽ (Todd Inlet). They will be running the tour again on October 24, 2017. Visit the Peninsula Streams website for more information.