A member of the Slocan River Streamkeepers teaches local students about water chemistry.

Slocan River Streamkeepers host pair of information sessions

On November 3 at Crescent Valley Hall and on November 10 at Winlaw Hall (both at 7 p.m.) you can find out about their activities.

Who are the Slocan River Streamkeepers, and what do they do?

When the fuel spill happened last year, they were the group most of the community trusted to know what it would all mean, and what we needed to do. The truth is, most people would be surprised at all the projects the group has its hands — and their whole bodies — in.

On November 3 at Crescent Valley Hall and on November 10 at Winlaw Hall (both at 7 p.m.) you’ll have a chance to find out about their wide range of activities.

You may even find yourself wanting to be part of the exciting work of this avid group of mostly volunteers.

The event is entitled Our Valley, Our River, Ourselves: An evening with the Slocan River Streamkeepers.

A  slideshow will be accompanied by stories and explanations about everything to do with the river and the care that goes into keeping it the wonderful waterway it is.

Several speakers will tell you what they have learned and what they have been doing for the last while, in fact for the last 10 years.

Some of the most enjoyable work the Streamkeepers do is teaching — taking the information they have (and the bugs) into the schools, and telling coming generations the complex story of water. With these two evenings, they are doing the same thing for adults, only more so.

Swim down the river and count the fish, learn about riparian restoration and marvel at the creativity and hard work that goes into helping the river maintain its course. Hear about research on otters: What do otters eat, and where do they live? The answers may surprise you.

See the colourful maps being developed to show how the whole ecosystem interconnects and where are the critical areas.

Recently Area H RDCK director Walter Popoff said he thought mapping was one of the most important things the community can do. “How can we know how to take care of what we have until we know what it is?” he asked.

Find out about why wetlands are so critical to the ecosystem, and what incredible diversity exists in these under-appreciated storehouses of aquatic life and health. See the work that has been done to enhance and explore these areas.

Discover why side channels are so important and how they work to keep the fish healthy and happy and plentiful. Be surprised at how many kinds of fish are in our river, and learn just where they lurk.

Meet some benthic invertebrates. These fetching little beings are the key to knowing just how the river is doing, and are tiny links at the base of the complex food chain. Several will actually be present at the event, swimming under the microscopes.

And of course, find out about the fuel oil spill ­— what we knew before, what we did when it occurred, what has happened since, where to go from here.

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