The sweet smells of spring in GoldstreamPark make it hard to believe that merely one year ago, over 40,000 litres of gasoline were spilled into this precious ecosystem. It was April 16th, 2011 when a Columbia Fuels B-Train truck crashed into the rock wall, rupturing the fuel tanks and pouring gasoline and diesel into the GoldstreamRiver. Monitoring and remediation by the Ministry of Environment, the Goldstream Hatchery and various other interest groups has been on-going. The impact on the salmon population was devastating as it occurred just as there had been a release of thousands of Coho fry from the hatchery, Chum fry were emerging from their riverbed nurseries and one year old Coho and Chinook fry were continuing to feed in the river. These vulnerable young salmon perished from the spill site down to the estuary. The full extent of the loss will not be evident until all of these generations and species of salmon return to spawn (Each salmon species has a different life cycle). As we wait and see, some of the future remediation will include sampling and continuous monitoring of specific areas along the path of the spill. The staff and volunteers of the Goldstream Nature House remain optimistic and hopeful of Mother Nature’s resiliency. We wish to send out a huge THANK-YOU to everyone who has been involved in helping the GoldstreamRiver recover from this tragedy.
For more information or questions regarding the fuel spill please contact:
Graham Knox Manager, Environmental Emergency Program BC Ministry of Environment Phone: (250) 356-8383 Email:
Outreach and Engagement Coordinator
Aboriginal Youth Intern BC Ministry of Environment Email:
The Year in Review Written by the Goldstream Staff
Looking back over the past year, there were many memorable events in GoldstreamProvincialPark. Some notable moments, both good and bad, were captured in the media including the fluorescent green river incident, the tragic Columbia Fuels gas spill, and the unlikely appearance of a majestic cougar just outside the Nature House while cameras were already rolling!!! In and amongst these sensational examples, there were many other noteworthy occasions. We continued to offer a full compliment of environmental education programs without any government funding. In September and October we transformed the Nature House into an ArtGallery for our biennial (once every two years) fundraiser, The Nature of Island Artists Art Show and then changed it all back in time for the 2011 Salmon Run. To kick off that season we hosted the Goldstream 5K Fun Run and were blessed with a beautiful, sunny, fall morning for the event. Salmon season was as busy as ever with ten weeks of non-stop school programming that allowed 5000 eager-to-learn students the opportunity to experience the nature of Goldstream. The Goldstream Chums sponsorship program (see below for details) was again successful in supporting these efforts and keeping the programs alive. Overall, close to 41,000 spawning Chum salmon were counted in the river; an above average return for Goldstream. These are just a few examples of the many activities and events that went on at the Goldstream Nature House this past year. As we now observe the new growth of spring with budding trees, and eggs appearing in nests, we are certain that the upcoming year will be filled with inspired spirit, new growth and vibrant life in the Goldstream Nature House.
'New' to Goldstream
A Guide to “Goldstream”
Written by a Goldstream Volunteer
Before becoming a Goldstream Nature House volunteer in the 90’s, I would often run into retired Naturalist Carol Berryman along the Riverside Trail. We would stop and chat, and invariably she would talk about the park, imparting interesting and informative facts about its’ many trails.
It was obvious how much Carol loved the park, how dear it was to her heart. The park meant so much to her and she knew how much it had to offer all its’ visitors. In fact, she often mentioned that when she had time, she intended to sit down and start writing a guide to the park for visitors, and what they would discover as they hiked along its’ many trails. And one day she did just that! Sadly though, Carol became ill and passed away before she was able to bring the guide to fruition. Thanks to some very dedicated Naturalist friends, Carol’s writings were thoughtfully and carefully transformed into a beautiful guide. So if you want to find out what you’ll discover along ‘that trail’, what plant that was you saw, what bird you glimpsed on that tree, why not purchase the guide? “Carol’s Guide to Goldstream – an interpretive journey through GoldstreamProvincialPark” not only exists, but is now available for sale. You’ll find a wealth of information about the park, feel as though you’ve been taken by the hand for a personal tour of the park, and you can feel proud knowing all the proceeds will support the Nature House as it receives no government funding!
Carol’s guide is one of a kind – just as Carol was!
The ‘Tiny Traveller’
Written by the Goldstream Staff
The Rufous Hummingbirds have long entertained the staff, volunteers and visitors at the Goldstream Nature House. Known as the ‘messengers’ by the Coast Salish because of their speed and agility, Rufous hummingbirds are also referred to as zippers, hummers, zimmers, or Rufies! No matter what you call them, they are always feisty and fascinating! To find out more: Purchase a book on hummingbirds from the Goldstream Nature House Bookstore. Here are a few fun facts about Rufous Hummingbirds to get you started:
A male Rufous Hummingbird safely returned to the outdoors after sneaking into the Nature House - April 2012.
In proportion to its size it is thought to make the longest migration of any bird in the world
Males are very territorial and tend to aggressively dominate feeders. They sometimes are willing to share with an attractive female!
It can beat its wings 60-80 times a SECOND!
It is the most widely spread of all hummingbirds; throughout Canada, the USA and Mexico
It is a master of aerial maneuverability (flying backwards, dive bombing, hovering)
It is the only known hummingbird that goes into torpor (short term hibernation) at night to conserve energy = energy efficient living.(Thanks to Dan True: Hummingbirds of North America)
For their small size and short duration of visit, these tiny birds are a GIANT attraction for visitors. With Earth Day on the horizon, perhaps we all can learn something from the Rufous Hummingbirds’ unique energy efficient lives. Come out to the Goldstream Nature House and see for yourself why there is big talk about these little birds.
Up Coming Event
Brought to you by:
A day to share in the love of nature! Sunday May 27th, 2012 10:30-2:30
Photo by: Kevin Oke - Kevin Oke Photography
JoinRLCPark Services at the Goldstream Nature House Sunday May 27th, 2012 for a day to share in the love of nature and learn about different ways we can help to conserve our unique ecosystems in our own day to day living.
Starting at 10:30am various local businesses, musicians, volunteers and our very own Goldstream Park Naturalists will lead you in an array of educational and musical adventures.
Located on the banks of the Parks unique and vital watershed, “Conservation Funk” will highlight the importance of the river and estuary in the Park and get the wheels turning as to what your part for nature could be.
Community Partners: And Many More...
Goldstream 2012 Photo Contest
Do you have beautiful photos of GoldstreamPark?
Enter them into our first annual Photo contest!We are looking for photos that capture nature, wildlife, and human visitors of GoldstreamPark.
All photographs should accurately portray the subject matter and the scene as it appeared in the park. Photos that have been digitally altered beyond standard optimization (removal of dust, cropping, reasonable adjustments to exposure, color and contrast, etc.) will be disqualified.
Contest is open from January 1st to July 31st, 2012, and is open for photographers of ALL ages.
For full contest rules and to get your entry form, come to the Goldstream Nature House or visit us online at www.naturehouse.ca
What’s a Chum?
Not only is a Chum one of the species of Pacific Salmon; it also could be YOU!
The annual Chum Salmon run at GoldstreamProvincialPark is a natural wonder that every child in our community should have the chance to experience. There is an opportunity for YOU to make this happen by becoming a Chumin our Goldstream Chums sponsorship program. RLC Park Services has partnered with Habitat Acquisition Trust (HAT) for the last 10 years to offer the Goldstream Chums program; a way for local businesses and individuals to lend financial support to offset costs for school children wishing to attend the Goldstream Salmon Run programs.
For decades, this educational opportunity was provincially funded and readily accessible to all children. The Salmon Run programs at GoldstreamProvincialPark became a fixture in the curriculum of our local schools. After provincial funding was withdrawn in 2002, and necessary user fees implemented for the cost of the programs, many schools and families were unable to afford this opportunity.
Each year, we work very hard to gain community awareness and support for the funding of the Nature House and the programs that are provided here. Over the past decade the Goldstream Chums initiative has made it possible for more than 50,000 local school children to experience the salmon run first hand. There are many types and levels of sponsorship. For some it is a monetary donation and for others, “in-kind” services have been offered. A tax receipt is issued for monetary donations. Depending on the level of support offered and an array of additional promotional benefits are provided. For more information on this program please contact us at 250-478-9414 or by email,
Thank you again!
2011 Goldstream Chums Legacy Group:
If YOU are interested in helping more children see the salmon next year, please consider contributing in one or more of these ways:
1. Visit the Goldstream Nature House and make a donation or purchase;