A blue heron perches near Discovery Pier in Campbell River. Photo by Marissa Tiel/Campbell River Mirror

City Council asks staff for updates on heron protection initiatives

Great Blue Heron Society wants to know where previously-planned steps sit during COVID-19 cutbacks

With many city projects and initiatives placed on hold this year to mitigate the impacts and spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Great Blue Heron Society (GBHS) wants to know where the city’s planned tree bylaw and heron protection measures stand.

The organization sent a letter to council recently, commending the city on the moves its already made towards protecting heron habitat, such as hiring a full-time arborist, but says it’s worried about how ongoing development will affect the historical and current heron colonies in the community should protection measures not be implemented before the next nesting season.

“With regard to the Twillingate heron colony, where there has been heron nesting activity since 2008 and seven active nests this year, we hope to see these protections in place before next spring’s nesting season begins,” the letter reads. “At least four historical colonies have been displaced in the Campbell River area, so we urge council to consider a fresh planning perspective for the Twillingate area before any more development is approved, including ensuring wildlife corridors into Willow Creek Nature Park for all area wildlife. Care must also be taken to ensure area residents are aware of the needs of the herons.”

RELATED: City of Campbell River to look at heron habitat protection

The great blue heron is provincially Blue-Listed, meaning it’s been recognized as “vulnerable,” and is listed as a “species of special concern” federally by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. There are only between 4,000 and 5,000 nesting adults in the coastal subspecies, according to a recent report presented to council in February of this year from the city’s environmental specialist Terri Martin.

When council received that report, it asked for options for conservation measures it could implement to be brought back before council, and the GBHS letter received this week spurred them to ask for an update from staff.

“It’s nice to get recognition for the things we’ve done,” said Coun. Charlie Cornfield in discussing the letter. “I think we try our darndest to make sure environmental values are balanced and appropriate for different things.”

Cornfield asked for an update from city staff on how the tree protection bylaw, the heron nesting program and the urban forest plan, all of which are supposed to be in development, to be brought to an upcoming Committee of the Whole meeting so council can see how things are progressing and discuss next steps.

The motion passed unanimously. Watch future editions of the Campbell River Mirror for updates.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Campbell River Hospice Staff practice Reiki with a client at the hospice. Photo supplied by Campbell River Hospice Society.
Campbell River Hospice Society holds fundraiser raffle

Two draws per week until mid-February

Lyric John-Cliffe and Cory Cliffe sing a traditional Laichkwiltach canoe song by the Campbell River Estuary. Photo by Binny Paul/Campbell River Mirror
Passing the baton of environmental stewardship to seven generations on a Vancouver Island estuary

Coastal guardian watchman Cory Cliffe from Wei Wai Kum First Nation and niece Lyric John-Cliffe talk about conservation and traditional knowledge

Mayor Andy Adams receives the First Poppy for 2020 from Campbell River Legion Branch 137 Vice-President Alain Chatigny CD. The annual Poppy Campaign officially starts Oct. 30. Photo submitted
Poppy Campaign kicks off Oct. 30

Mayor Andy Adams received the First Poppy for 2020 from Campbell River… Continue reading

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
RCMP caution about sharing intimate images

Images are hard to take down once posted, warn RCMP

The Campbell River Chapter of Cystic Fibrosis Canada held a successful fundraiser on the weekend, Quest4CF. The scavenger hunt on wheels raised more than $15,000. Photo by Erin Wallis
Campbell River’s Quest 4 CF a big success in its first go-round

Event raised funds for cystic fibrosis awareness and research

FILE – People wait in line at a COVID-19 testing facility in Burnaby, B.C., on Thursday, August 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
167 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death recorded as B.C. enters 2nd wave

Three new healthcare outbreaks also announced

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Nanaimo RCMP are asking for the public’s assistance in locating Michael Leighton, who is wanted on 11 warrants on Vancouver Island and is a suspect in a recent break, enter and theft in Nanaimo. (Photos submitted)
RCMP looking for break-and-enter suspect with 11 warrants on the Island

Nanaimo RCMP say Michael Leighton a suspect in theft of pistol and $40,000 worth of coins

This 2020 electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 particle isolated from a patient, in a laboratory in Fort Detrick, Md. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-NIAID/NIH via AP
At least 49 cases of COVID-19 linked to wedding in Calgary: Alberta Health

McMillan says the city of Calgary has recently seen several outbreaks linked to social gatherings

UBC geoscientists discovered the wreckage of a decades-old crash during an expedition on a mountain near Harrison Lake. (Submitted photo)
Wreckage of decades-old plane crash discovered on mountain near Harrison Lake

A team of Sts’ailes Community School students helped discover the twisted metal embedded in a glacier

The official search to locate Jordan Naterer was suspended Saturday Oct. 17. Photo courtesy of VPD.
‘I am not leaving without my son,’ says mother of missing Manning Park hiker

Family and friends continue to search for Jordan Naterer, after official efforts suspended

A bear similar to this black bear is believed responsible for killing a llama in Saanich on Oct. 19. (Black Press Media file photo)
Bear kills llama on Vancouver Island, prompting concerns over livestock

Officers could not track the bear they feel may not fear humans

Most Read