Measure seaweed scientifically

One year, I had the bright idea of covering the whole front lawn with seaweed.

Having lived at the water’s edge at the entrance to Baynes Sound for more than 20 years has been a privilege as well as an education. Every year, I gather many trash cans full of seaweed to place upon my seaside veggie garden.

One year, I had the bright idea of covering the whole front lawn with the stuff. I was putting it on about a foot thick when I turned around and looked at the large area I covered I began laughing. A kabillion bugs were jumping out of the seaweed and heading towards the beach a few feet away. I often wonder how they knew which direction to go?

One of your recent letter writers (‘Seaweed is good business,’ Cliff Walker) was incorrect in several areas I would like to address.

Dr. Ian Birtwell, retired DFO scientist, did an academic peer review of published documents pertaining to seaweed and came to his conclusions. This is not anecdotal story telling like the above paragraph. Its scientific data reviewed and restated for public knowledge.

Science does not generally put undergrad students on short, two-month-long projects to study and reach conclusions upon which business will be allowed to change the environment significantly as is being done with a Ministry of Agriculture grant to Clamshell U to hire some students to flag seaweed and see that it floats and re-floats after every storm. A real scientific study would take several years of undertaking, and employ real scientists.

I do acknowledge that after we complained to high heaven about the destruction that these people did to our community garden they participated recently in cleaning up and restoring the area. Much appreciated by the Deep Bay community for sure. But the tracks from their machine are still visible in places.

This indeed is raw resource extraction abusing our community and greatly affecting the ecology of local beaches as well as the oyster and shellfish industry.

One thing that people don’t realize when they smell the rotting seaweed on the beach is that this is a natural process… the seaweed eventually is broken down by feeding bugs, crabs, critters (bear, deer, otter eat it) and the next storm even washes what’s left back into the sea, this then becomes liquefied eventually and is nutrient rich food for shellfish in Baynes Sound.

Len WalkerDeep Bay

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Parksville man arrested after stabbing incident at makeshift camp near city mall

Oceanside RCMP report 28-year-old man taken into custody without incident

‘100 Oceanside Men Who Give a Damn’ donates $9,500 to hospice society

OHS provides services free of charge to palliative clients and their families

Parksville runner ready to raise funds for charity

Watson to run half-marathon with daughter Lauren

B.C. records new COVID-19 death, 85 more cases; Horgan calls on celebrity help

This brings the total number of active confirmed cases to 531 across the province

Horvat scores 2 as Vancouver Canucks beat Blues 5-2 in NHL playoff opener

Game 2 in best-of-seven series goes Friday night

Old-growth forest defenders in Campbell River call for B.C. forest minister’s resignation

Protestors outside North Island MLA’s office ask government to stop old-growth logging

Teachers to get 2 extra days to prepare for students’ return, now set for Sept. 10

Students will first start with orientation and learn rules of COVID-19 classroom policies

High-volume littering at Cape Scott draws ire from hiking groups

Popular Vancouver Island hiking spot not closing, but frustration about crowding grows

SFU to drop ‘Clan’ varsity team name

The ‘Clan’ name is shortened from ‘Clansmen,’ and was introduced roughly 55 years ago

New Tory leader must build a strong team in Commons and for the campaign: Scheer

Scheer marked his final day in the House of Commons today as leader of the Opposition

B.C. to hire 500 more COVID-19 contact tracers ahead of fall

Contract tracers add an ‘extra layer’ in the fight against the novel coronavirus

More than $800,000 in suspected cocaine seized from ship near Victoria

RCMP Dive Team suspects more narcotics had been stored below ship’s waterline

Most Read