Happy World Wetlands Day!
Every February 2 marks the day of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands in the City of Ramsar in Iran. The Ramsar Convention’s mission is “the conservation and wise use of all wetlands through local and national actions and international cooperation, as a contribution towards achieving sustainable development throughout the world”.
Among the world’s most productive environments, wetlands are known as Mother Nature’s water filtration system. Our fresh water supply comes from wetlands and they provide food and habitat for a diverse collection of species.
Nanaimo is home to many wetlands including:
Buttertubs Marsh Park
Buttertubs Marsh Park, located off Jingle Pot Road, consists of over 23 hectares (56 acres) of reclaimed wetlands, a shrub-mixed forest, a 2 km loop trail and viewpoints for wildlife and bird watching.
When strolling around the marsh, keep an eye out for the Painted Turtles, an endangered species. Painted turtles are the only native freshwater turtle in BC.
Jingle Pot Marsh (Third Street Park)
Third Street Park is located near the Bird Sanctuary and Hawthorne neighbourhoods and contains Jingle Pot Marsh, a shrub-mixed forest and a trail network including a segment of the Trans-Canada Trail.
If you’re walking in Third Street Park listen for Virginia Rails. This rarely seen, secretive bird, typically lives within dense vegetation (mostly in cattails, reeds, and deep grasses) feeding on insects, frogs, and occasionally small fish.