Seth Moore plants a Douglas Fir tree in part of the forest owned by NACFOR. Along with planting trees

NES students learn about invasive plants

NES students plant trees with NACFOR and learn about invasive species.

You couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day on May 25 as students from Nakusp Elementary School (NES) headed out to MacDonald Creek to plant trees and learn about invasive species.

Students were divided into two groups, Grade 3/4 and Grade 7. The Grade 3/4 class did a biodiversity scavenger hunt to look for different plants and insects, while the Grade 7 class learned the difference between what kind of plants are native to the West Kootenays, and what plants are invasive.

They learned how as an invasive species is introduced into a new area biodiversity goes down, and the smaller the ecosystem is, the faster an invasive species can spread.

Students were also shown some of the species affecting the West Kootenays. A lot of the invasive species are plants. These include scotch broom, marsh plume thistle, and Japanese knotweed. Many feel getting the NES students involved in learning about invasive plants and animals affecting the area is important.

“Kids are so observant. If they know it’s invasive, that’s going to carry through the rest of their lives,” said Erin Bates, an invasive species technician with the Central Kootenay Invasive Species Society (CKISS). “If they can identify even one invasive species that they didn’t know before they got here, then our work is done.”

After an hour, students were taken up a logging road to one of the Nakusp and Area Community Forest’s (NACFOR’s) planting sites. There, they were once again divided into two groups, one for a nature walk, the other for tree planting. After a certain amount of time, the groups would switch.

For tree planting, the students were divided into four groups. The groups were given three different types of seedlings to plant, which had to be spaced a certain distance apart from each other in order to optimize growth.

For many of the students who took part in the tree planting last year, it gave them a chance to find the trees they had planted and check on their growth.

NACFOR has worked with the school district for the last five years.

“We had recently logged a spot, and we had trees coming to plant,” said Frances Swan, a project manager with NACFOR. “It just sort of worked out that we had some available ground and some available trees, and there were some teachers who were interested.”

Swan thinks it’s a great opportunity for students to learn about the natural environment and resource management.

“We live in a resource based community, and it’s a really good opportunity for the students to get out and see how it works, and see it in action.”

Students enjoyed the learning experience.

“In my opinion it’s always good to know what are the good plants and what are the bad,” said Ledger Coates, a Grade 7 student at NES. “It’s great for just knowing what they are, so if there’s anything bad growing in your yard, you know what it is, and when to pick it out.”

Fellow student Dustin Lasseter agrees.

“Planting trees helps make cleaner air, and preventing the invasive species will help the environment, and help native plants.”

NACFOR and School District 10 have developed an educational partnership, with NACFOR committed to working within the district on many different educational initiatives, with tree planting being among them.

Swan hopes the program goes on for many years to come.

“As long as NACFOR has areas that need planting, and it works out with the timing in the spring, we’ll continue to do it.”

 

Just Posted

Police investigating man’s death in Winlaw

Foul play not established, but major crimes unit is investigating

Woman raising funds to save historic Rossland piano

Rare Steinway piano was in Miners Hall for a century, but was headed to the dump

West Kootenay opinion sought on health care issues

Rural Evidence Review getting strong response to survey call-out

By-election date set for Nakusp village council

Voters will be turning out to choose a replacement for Janis Neufeld

NSS Track team members headed to provincials

Nakusp Secondary School students do well at track meet

600 new campsites coming to provincial parks and recreation sites across B.C.

Tourism Minister announced half of the new spots to 13 most popular provincial parks

Municipalities protest after B.C. declares marijuana growing ‘farm use’

UBCM president seeks answers in letter to John Horgan government

CMHC defends mortgage stress test changes amid calls for loosening rules

Uninsured borrowers must now show they could service their mortgage if rates rose two per cent

B.C. woman left ‘black and blue’ after being pushed off 40-foot cliff at lake

West Shore RCMP looking for witnesses as investigation continues

Kootenay youth substance use trending downward: survey

A bi-annual survey distributed to regional schools shows that youth substance use is decreasing

Thunderstorms to bring heavy rain, risk of flash floods in the southern Interior

Ten to 30 millimetres of rain to fall over the early weekend

Unbe-leaf-able: Agassiz man finds more than 200 four-leaf clovers in a month

Walt Hardinge has found more than 219 four-or-more leaf clovers this spring alone

Crews fight fire with fire to keep blaze from northern Alberta town

The wildfire now covers some 920 square kilometres

Man in B.C. charged with murder and arson in 2016 New Brunswick death

He is charged in the death of 71-year-old Lucille Maltais, who was found inside a burned down home

Most Read