Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority welcomed more than 80 families to Sheppard’s Bush Conservation Area in Aurora on June 17 for its third annual BioBlitz.
A BioBlitz is an intense period of biological surveying in an attempt to record all the living species within a designated area. Knowing what species exist helps us track ecological changes.
In an effort to engage and encourage budding nature enthusiasts, LSRCA also hosted children’s activities, guided hikes and demonstrations.
LSRCA’s electrofishing demonstration drew a crowd of around 50 onlookers, in awe as they watched LSRCA staff don their electrofishing gear to capture fish species in the East Holland River. The East Holland River, which runs through Sheppard’s Bush, eventually makes its way to Lake Simcoe.
Electrofishing is a harmless method of capturing fish using an electrical current that temporarily stuns the fish in the water, enabling them to be caught with nets, identified, and returned to the stream. Among the species found was the mottled sculpin, a small fish that lives only where the water is clean.
Tallies of the variety of species recorded on the day-long event will be made available on LSRCA’s website.
Photo 1, above: LSRCA electrofishers Anna Copeland, Kaitlin Cocks and Jessica Chan drew a huge crowd of onlookers.
Photo 2: Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry Biologist Steve Varga spent the morning and early afternoon documenting the abundant plant life at Sheppard's Bush
Photo 3: Rob Wilson, LSRCA's Aquatic Ecologist, shares the fish species caught during the electrofishing demo with dozens of intent spectators.
Article and photos courtesy of Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority