Category: Flora

Alan Burger and a speaker discuss a presentation, Nicola Naturalists, Merritt BC ,Ca File Photo KDG

Leafing Through History: Exploring Fossil Plant Deposits in Western Canada.

The Nicola Naturalists Society is hosting the Kamloops Exploration Group and giving the meeting over to them evening.

[Note the change in dates – not theusual third Thursday of the month.]

Dr. Christopher West is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. He has degrees in Earth Sciences and Paleobiology, including a PhD from the University of Saskatchewan. He has published research on late Paleocene and early Eocene fossil floras from the Canadian High Arctic, British Columbia, and Alberta. Dr. West’s research interests are focused on reconstructing ancient climates and ecosystems using plant fossils in order to better understand ancient forest ecosystems, and how these ancient ecosystems gave rise to the modern forest biome in North America.


Doors open at 6 lecture at 7PM

In the lecture theater NVIT top of the hill Belshaw avenue in Merritt. The naturalists say all welcome membership or donation requested. Free parking.

On this Day: March 10th 1865

Last legal female slave execution in the US.

Christmas bird count results.

Spring time sees Ospreys return from where they go in the winter File Photo KDG

The Christmas bird count has 120 years of world wide data at the Audubon Society . Good to our feathered friends and be especially mindful of migratory birds as they are protected.

Here are some highlights of the bird count conducted by the Nicola Naturalists Society this winter in the Merritt BC area.

  • American Wigeon 74 up from 50 high
  • Northern Pintail 17 up from a high of 2
  • Greater White fronted Goose 1
  • Northern Shoveler 1
  • Peregrine Falcon 1
  • American Kestrels 6 up from a high of 3
  • Brown Creeper 4 up from a high of 2
  • Black Capped Chickadees 96 up from a high of 58
  • Steller’s Jay 38 up from a high of 37

7 teams of counters were out and had what the club called a pleasant day of counting . A notation that species counts are often effected by food supply an exceptional Douglas Fir cone drop made for a high count in Pine Siskins last year. Siskins were missed this year and joined 2 other species well below average: American Gold finch 9 ( average of 48) and Robins 1 ( average 23).

Source NNA

On this Day: March 3rd 1923

Time Magazine is published.

Alan Burger and a speaker discuss a presentation, Nicola Naturalists, Merritt BC ,Ca File Photo KDG

The February meeting of the Nicola Naturalist will be a presentation on Big Horn Sheep. Edyta Myrcisz.

Originally from Poland, Edyta was drawn to Canada by its vastness, nature and wildlife. She is currently a graduate student at Thompson Rivers University and works in collaboration with Gerad Hales of FLNRORD (Wildlife Management). Using massive data sets collected from Bighorns fitted with satellite-tracking collars, she is looking at long-distance forays by rams in several Bighorn herds, and also the general distribution of these herds. Contact with domestic sheep is of particular interest, because recent declines in one Thompson Region population is thought to result from disease linked with domestic sheep.

Source Nicola Naturalists

The meetings start at 7PM at he Nicola Valley Institute of Technology, free parking no food or drink in the lecture theater, membership or donation requested.

On this Day: January 30th 2009

Iceland’s money crisis begins.

Dr Kerridge gives a talk on bats at local college File photo KDG

Thursday January 16th 2019 the Nicola Naturalists start off their 2020 schedule with a presentation on bats by Paul Mozin.

Paul Mozin is a biologist with the Nicola Watershed Stewardship and Fisheries Authority (Scw’exmx Tribal Council). This group has undertaken an ambitious project to inventory and monitor the bat species in the Nicola Valley. Paul will be presenting the results from last year’s bat inventory, some background on endangered bat species in the Nicola Valley and some actions their group has taken this year. Come and learn more about these important but poorly understood citizens of the night.


Free parking at NVIT, no concessions consumed in the theater, membership or donation requested.

On this Day: January 2nd 1976

The gale of 76 kills nearly 90 people.

Thermal Refugia Nicola River November 20th 2019

NVIT Lecture theater 7PM

A returning Salmon rises out of the water at the Nicola river Hyway 8 train bridge walking trail, Merritt BC August 12th/16 Photo KDG

There is a speaker and topic change at this months Nicola Naturalists Society meeting. Tom Willms will present on the thermal disparities of the Nicola river.

Tom Willms is a PhD candidate with UNBC, an Instructor at NVIT, and an active member of the Nicola Naturalist Society. He will share some of his research in characterization of thermal refuge habitat in the Nicola River and the importance of these refugia to salmonid fish. His work explores groundwater-surface water interactions in streams and uses some new technologies, including drone-based thermal imagery.

Free parking membership or donation requested.

There is free parking and an opportunity for membership in the society at the meeting. No food or beverage in the lecture theater.

On this Day: November 19th 1998

Van Gogh ‘s Artist wiith out a beard sells for over 70 million dollars US.

TGIF- Loretta Holmes and burrowing owls…

Burrowing owl and friends File photo KDG

Nicola Naturalist Society November meeting 20th at 7PM NVIT lecture theater.

[NOTE  – this meeting is on Wednesday and not our usual Thursday] 

An active member of our club, Loretta has been involved in the Burrowing Owl Recovery Program for several years. The goal is to re-establish these tiny owls as a viable breeding population on their past range in the interior grasslands. There are several sites in the Nicola Valley where captive-bred owls are released and breed successfully. Loretta will explain the difficulties and successes of this worthy program.

A borrowing owl up close File photo KDG

The Naturalists always say all welcome, membership or donation requested. NO food or drinks in lecture theater.

On this Day: November 1st 1982

First Asian cars made in America.

Alan Burger and a speaker discuss a presentation, Nicola Naturalists, Merritt BC ,Ca File Photo KDG

The Nicola Naturalists are having their annual members meeting tonight at 7: PM. The

As usual, we kick off the fall with our popular Photo Night – always an amazing collection of local nature pics taken by our members during the summer. We keep the required AGM business meeting short – but this is a good time to discuss any options or new directions for our club. The club always needs members to volunteer as directors, field outing leaders and much more, so please contact one of the directors to volunteer to help run the club

Source NNS

The club meets on Belshaw road in Merritt’s NVIT campus , top of the hill, the fall sessions are on Wednesdays as a change from the regular third Thursday of the month.

Trees planted…

These trees didn’t grow.. Voght park, Merritt BC
File photo.

Carbon planet

All that is planted does not grow. However look at this from TD Bank.

Continuing to grow and enhance green spaces for everyone to enjoy.
Supporting the transition to a low carbon economy – with a CAD $100 billion target in low-carbon lending, financing, asset management and other programs by 2030.

Vibrant Planet

Carbon neutral bank

TD claims carbon neutral since 2010 in its operations. One of its mission statements is to ” develop colleagues and act with resect” Something that seems missing in the present social political climate.

Trying not failure

Even though the trees above failed to take effort always leaves a legacy of knowledge!

Canadian Chartered banks excellent.

The chartered bank system in Canada was in the forefront of the survival of the world banking system in the collapse of many large investment banks at the start of the great recession in the decade after the millennium turning. Lets hope they can be as productive in the carbon conflict.

Good luck.

Ethiopa Plants 350 million trees.

Ethiopians planted more than 350,000 trees in just 12 hours on Monday, the country’s minister of innovation and technology announced on Twitter. The mass-tree planting not only helps the environment, it sets a world record, the Associated Press reported.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed created the initiative to help restore Ethiopia’s landscape, which experts say is being eroded by deforestation and climate change, the AP reported.

CBS News

They had help from UN and government but its a good start.

On this Day: August 13th 1913

The first production of UK stainless steel.

Carbon is life…

The lightest and most abundant element in the universe is hydrogen. The sun ( our star) is burning hydrogen in a compressed fusion reaction, mostly at its core. The by-product of the reaction is helium. When a star burns up its hydrogen it goes to the next element on the periodic table, helium. The by-product of that fusion is carbon. All life on earth is carbon based that means that the element that gives use life came from a burning out star so long ago it is barley fathomable.

Carbon in a cycle on earth.

The limited supply of carbon is in a cycle of production of life giving oxygen giving us the means to make energy, the bi-product of this is carbon dioxide that will be taken up by plants to make oxygen again.

The carbon in this flora is reacting to photo chemistry to make oxygen from carbon dioxide. File photo KDG

Life sustaining balance of gases.

Our atmosphere has been through many changes over time including some mass extinctions. Man has in recent times interceded ( acid rain and sulphur). Man is capable when deployed to sustain most natural short term unbalances.

Enjoy the suns magic today.

The sun is young and strong we are able to take action at this time.

On this Day: July 2nd 2019

Once in 400 years total solar eclipse in viewed in South America.

Species at risk public library, registry.

The Monarch Butterfly is listed as endangered in all ten Canadian provinces in the Canadian Species at Risk Library.

Southern resident killer Whale conservation agreement.

The goal of this agreement is to reduce the acoustic and physical disturbance to SRKW by large commercial vessels in Pacific Canadian waters, in particular those vessels that call at the Port of Vancouver, or otherwise operate in SRKW critical habitat, through the continuation of existing voluntary efforts and the commitment to develop and implement new voluntary threat reduction measures to support the recovery of the SRKW.

Species at risk act.

Keep their feet to the fire

Feeding on milk weed…

On this Day: June 19th 1978

Garfield is published.

Once they were Hats…

The Nicola Naturalists last presentation meeting of the season is titled “Once they were Hats.” Beavers in the Canadian ecology.


castor canadensis

Thursday May 16th 2019, 7 PM at NVIT Lecture Theatre: Frances Backhouse –  “Once they were hats” The biology of beavers and their role in Canada’s history.   
[This presentation was postponed in 2017 due to weather – rescheduled by popular demand]
Biologist and author Frances Backhouse has published books on a wide range of nature topics, including owls and woodpeckers, and also on historical topics such as the women in the Klondike gold rush. Her latest book examines humanity’s 15,000-year relationship with Castor canadensis, and the beaver’s even older relationship with North American landscapes and ecosystems. This will be a fascinating presentation blending biology and history. Some of you have heard Frances’s recent CBC Radio Ideas program on beavers.

The society says all welcome, membership or donation requested.

On this Day: May 14th 1918

Two minutes silence is used for the first time, by Sir Harry Hands.

Grizzly Bears, Francis Iredale

Alan Burger and a speaker discuss a presentation, Nicola Naturalists, Merritt BC ,Ca File Photo KDG

The Nicola Naturalists are having their February meeting on February 21st 2019. Francis Iredale will present on Grizzly bears in the south Chilcotin.

Everyone loves hearing about Grizzly Bears and the presentation by Francis Iredale is especially worth attending. Since 2008 Francis has worked for the Province to conserve and manage species at risk and big game animals in the Thompson Region. He enjoys collaborating with indigenous communities and non-government organizations towards the long-term conservation of local wildlife populations. For several years Francis has been studying the special relationship that Grizzly Bears in the dry mountains of the Chilcotin have with Whitebark Pine in the fall. Understanding the resource use of these bears is essential to build up their diminished population. At the same time, the selection of Whitebark Pine needs to be understood for the conservation of this endangered tree species. Not to be missed!

Source Nicola Naturalists

The meeting time is 7PM at the NVIT lecture theater, free parking, no food or drink in the theater. The group is fond of saying all welcome membership or donation requested.

Alan is giving a presentation at the Merritt Library on Tuesday the 19th as well.

File Photo KDG

On this Day: February 14th 1966

Austrailian currency is decriminalized.

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