Streamkeeping Activities in Maple Ridge
Eager to get involved with streamkeeping activities and watershed monitoring in Maple Ridge? There are several options available that ARMS can provide support and equipment for. Certain activities are seasonal and are in conjunction with salmon runs, while others can be done year-round. A few of ARMS’s stream activities require individuals to be Certified Streamkeepers to be conducted independently, however having this designation is not necessary in a group setting so long as one group member is a Certified Streamkeeper. The Streamkeeper course through the Pacific Streamkeepers Federation (PSkF), is offered 1-2 times per year in the Maple Ridge area on an in-demand basis.
October – December
During seasonal Chum, Pink, and Coho salmon runs, ARMS volunteers collect critical data that is forwarded on to the Federal Department of Fisheries & Oceans (DFO) and becomes an invaluable part of ARMS records. Join one of our small groups and head to a prominent Alouette Watershed creeks once per week. Put on waders, step into the water, and get a first-hand look at the end of the salmon cycle. Training provided.
Juvenile Fish Trapping
March – June
While fry are swimming about in our local watersheds, ARMS volunteer groups are busy setting juvenile fish traps in salmon-bearing Alouette creeks and streams to help determine the size and strength of BC salmon species. This activity offers an up close and personal experience with the beginning of the salmon cycle.
Curious about the health of a neighbourhood creek? Gather information by conducting water-quality testing. Sign out a kit from the Rivers Heritage Centre and test water for oxygen levels, temperature, and turbidity. This important data helps ARMS in future project development by notifying ARMS of any newly significant changes in creek health. Training provided.
Litter & Debris Cleanups
October – December
Garbage has no place in natural habitats. If you notice litter or debris in a creek or stream, you can remove contamination within reason: the creek/stream is safely accessible and is on public property. Ensure that proper precautions are taken if handling hazardous materials, such as dead animals or needles. The Maple Ridge Adopt-A-Block Program can provide proper cleanup equipment (gloves, bags, buckets, garbage grabbers, and medical waste containers). Report pollution or any illegal dumping to the City of Maple Ridge or the Maple Ridge Adopt-A-Block Program (604 – 463 – 9699).
Katzie Slough Blind Channel Monitoring
April – August
ARMS staff venture out 1-2 times per month and collect data from this sensitive area. The Katzie Slough Blind Channel is an artificial offshoot of the larger Katzie Slough network. Evaluative work here includes vegetation surveying, (counting native species to track survival) and fish trapping, (measuring oxygen levels, temperature and turbidity of water, identifying any species caught in traps). This is an excellent opportunity to familiarize yourself with native plant species and sharpen your plant identification skills.
Invasive Species Removal & Native Species Planting
Many natural habitats in Maple Ridge are overrun with invasive species, including knotweed, Himalayan blackberry, lamium, and ivy. ARMS organizes several invasive species removal activities during the year and collaborates occasionally with the Lower Mainland Green Team (LMGT).
It is important to connect with your local watershed monitoring group (ARMS) before conducting any streamkeeping or invasive species removal activities. Ensuring municipal permission, an understanding of public-private property borders, and being up to date with any ecological or industrial projects in development, are a few examples of items that must be addressed.