Monitoring & Protecting the Near Shore Project elements include mapping, & year to year monitoring of eelgrass & kelp, promotion of softshore techniques at the shoreland interface and the "Anchor Out for Eelgrass" program.
Free Divers Check Eelgrass Every summer we welcome the Apneist Club of Vancouver who with help of volunteer kayakers monitor the extent and health of eelgrass beds already mapped in 1 or 2 of Mayne Island's bays.
Kelp MappingBull Kelp (Nereocystis luetkeana) is an annual marine seaweed that is common throughout the Gulf Islands. Its range extends from Alaska to California, and it provides important habitat for many kinds of marine life.
Forage Fish SurveyForage Fish are the cornerstone of the nearshore marine food web, providing food for numerous marine species. As the extent and location of spawning beaches in B.C. are largely unknown, surveys have identified local examples and assisting in their protection from detrimental impacts
Community & the SeashoreLand stewardship also entails care for tidal beaches, which should not be thought of as a boundary but as an interface. Common human activities have the potential to disrupt the marine ecology.
Beach CleanupIn 2014 Volunteers removed 1700 lbs of rubbish and recyclables from Mayne Island bays and coves.
Important Bird Area MICS is joint caretaker of the Active Pass Important Bird Area (IBA), an international designation for areas that support internationally and nationally significant populations or species of birds at some part of their life cycle.
Shoreline Stewardship The Mayne Island Conservancy's work on shoreline ecology culminated in the publishing of the Mayne Island Shoreline Atlas Report, which synthesizes much of the knowledge gained from all the elements of our Shoreline Care Project.
Project Description The Shoreline Care Program began in 2009 to raise awareness about the marine life that surrounds Mayne Island. This program has a strong emphasis on marine habitat monitoring and engages the community through volunteerism in all aspects of the program. We started off the program with eelgrass monitoring, forage fish spawning habitat surveys and monitoring of marine birds as co-caretakers of the Active Pass Important Bird Area. Our work over the past 4 years in mapping and the annual monitoring of kelp & eelgrass reached its culmination in the publication of a Shoreline Atlas for Mayne Island. This work is of key interest to shoreline (shoreland) property in that it promotes understanding of the physical and ecological significance of shorelines. Alternatives to harmful shoreline alterations were considered. Mayne School students participate in beach days and eelgrass monitoring. 2014 sees the beginning of Anchor out!
To learn about the different aspects of this program you can visit the following pages:
The Conservancy has launched "Anchor Out for Eelgrass!" This is an educational campaign aimed at encouraging boaters, residents and visitors alike, to anchor and moor outside of eelgrass meadows. The Conservancy has been mapping and monitoring eelgrass since 2009 and our baseline maps provide the basis for awareness about where the meadows are and how to protect them.
Our communication & education efforts began in 2014 and are continuing in 2015 with the positioning of information signage and the distribution of brochures. The signs are specific to each site as they show the location and extent of the eelgrass beds as disclosed by our mapping projects and confirmed with ongoing annual monitoring. These informative displays can be seen at:
Miner's Bay Dock
Village Bay boat launch
Horton Bay Dock
Curlew View boat launch
Gallagher Bay beach access
David Cove boat launch
The dock at the Mayne Island Resort
Outreach materials developed for this campaign will be shared with community groups on other islands. We thank the TD Friends of the Environment and the Capital Regional district for their support of this component of our long term Shoreline Care project
Sign at David Cove
Sign at Gallagher Bay
Anchor Out Brochure - 1
Anchor Out Brochure - 2
The information signs indicate the chart depth at which the seaward boundary of the eelgrass bed is to be found at each specific location. The video shows a minor example of how mooring buoys fitted with chains can scour the substrate in an eelgrass bed. At first you will see the rope and then the chain with a bare area around it. For this reason boaters need to avoid mooring or anchoring in eelgrass meadows. Being aware of the boundary depth is important, while conservation mooring buoys are available that have minimal impact on benthic habitats.
To download the Anchor Out brochure please right click here and save as...(or open & select save)
Many thanks are due to the various funding partners and project collaborators for their valued assistance, inspiration, and encouragement!:
VanCity presents their 2010 grant
VanCity Savings Credit Union enviroFund
VanCity Savings Community Fund
Real Estate Foundation of Britsh Columbia
Mayne Island Parks and Recreation Commission
SeaChange Marine Conservation Society
Seagrass Conservation Working Group
Galiano Island Conservancy Society
Galiano Island Parks and Recreation Commission
Youth Eco Internship Program
Public Conservation Assistance Fund
TD Friends of the Environment Foundation
Capital Regional District
Eelgrass & Sand Lance beaches
Sand Lance Central - 2010 Open House
The Project Presence at a Farmers' Market
Taking Inventory along a Transect
Eelgrass Beds in Gallagher Bay
You can find many more photographs and illustrations of the Shoreline Care Project in action by visiting our Gallery pages