Biodiversity is the foundation for healthy and resilient ecosystems, and it is in a global decline due to human-caused habitat loss and climate change. To increase awareness towards solutions, today has been declared the International Day for Biological Diversity 2022 by the United Nations.
Here on Vancouver Island, the Garry Oak and associated ecosystems are biodiversity gems, providing habitat for unique species found nowhere else in our country with many rare worldwide. Uplands Park and Cattle Point contain one of the largest and most intact fragments of these systems in Canada and are home to over 600 species of life, including 24 rare and endangered plant species!
As with many natural systems in our region and globally, Cattle Point and Uplands Park are under serious threat of being lost. Ironically, one of the largest threats comes from these systems not being able to accommodate the volume of people coming to appreciate their magnificence (or not doing so in a responsible manner). Shortly put, they are at risk of being trampled to death!
To protect these treasures while allowing this and future generations to absorb their beauty, our community needs to come together and install infrastructure deserving of these ecosystems and our demands on them.
To start this conversation, our amazing friend and partner @naturehoodyyj has commissioned a preliminary concept design (see sketches and letter below) for installing a system of boardwalks and lookout platforms in Cattle Point (completed by Paul de Greeff, Landscape Architect and Green Shores Expert).
While this would be a significant and expensive undertaking that would require community support in many aspects, we believe such a solution is necessary and will greatly benefit us all!
Please join in the conversation and do your part to protect the biodiversity these areas!
!!Remember!! There are immediate ways that you can be a steward of Uplands Park and Cattle Point and set a great example for newcomers to the park:
1) Follow all the instructions on park signage,
2) Stay on paths and out of the meadows,
3) Keep your dogs under your control, pick up and properly dispose of their feces and don’t play catch anywhere in the park.