Tuesday, 10 April 2012

EcoSask News, April 10, 2012

Urban Living
Pelicans Have Landed
The first official sighting of the pelicans was  at 7 am, April 4, at the weir.

The City of Regina is considering establishing an urban pesticide ban. The decision has been delayed as they wait for the release of the Saskatchewan Environmental Society’s report on the effects of pesticides, which is due April 30.

Recent research indicates that pregnant women with higher exposure to agricultural pesticides have babies with slightly lower birth rates. The researcher says that pregnant women can reduce their exposure to organophosphate pesticides by choosing organic foods; washing fruits and vegetables carefully; and choosing not to use pesticides in and around their homes.

Meewasin’s New Projects
The Meewasin Board reviewed the annual operational budget for the year ending March 31, 2013 at its meeting on April 4. New projects during the coming year will include a second Ecoblitz of the Northeast Swale, a Monarch Butterfly conservation program at Beaver Creek, and extending the Northwest Meewasin Trail from Adilman Drive to Kinnear. (Saskatoon StarPhoenix article has additional details)

Plants & Gardening
Hike in the Hills, April 15
Join folks from the Craik Sustainable Living Project as they go for a hike on Sunday, April 15 at 1 pm. Meet at the entrance to Craik Regional Park.

Crocus Field Trip, April 19
Join the Saskatoon Young Naturalists in looking for Prairie Crocus from 6-7:30 pm on April 19. Meet at the Peturrson Ravine parking lot (on Central Avenue, approximately 100 m. north of Somers Road). Pre-register by calling 975-3042 or send an email to saskatoonnaturekids@gmail.com.

Garlic Self Sufficiency
We Are Many Saskatoon is gearing up for spring garlic planting. This year, they plan to distribute garlic to anyone who would like to plant and grow it. Planting instructions and volunteers are available if requested. Return plot owners will be offered Saskatoon berry bushes to grow alongside their garlic. Contact Melissa.gan@wam.saskatoon.com if you are interested in donating land.

Plant ID
Nature Saskatchewan has just published Sedges of Saskatchewan. They have a number of additional publications to help you identify Prairie plants, including Ferns and Fern Allies of Saskatchewan; Lilies, Irises and Orchids of Saskatchewan; and Getting to Know Saskatchewan Lichens.

Science and Education
Redberry Lake / University Partnership
The Redberry Lake Biosphere Reserve (RLBR) and the School of Environment and Sustainability (SENS), University of Saskatchewan, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to strengthen their existing partnership.

As part of the agreement, SENS students will be offered regular field trips to RLBR.

Impending Death of the Solar Cycle, April 19
George Sofko will discuss The Impending Death of the Solar Cycle at the April 19 meeting  (7:30 pm) of the Saskatoon Nature Society in Room 106, Biology Building, U of S campus.

Public Policy
Two papers from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives discuss current political strategies:

A cure for Dutch disease: the consequences of a heavy reliance on primary resource exports and the need for a more balanced, sustainable industry mix

What a Wildrose victory may mean for Saskatchewan: future directions in Alberta could lead to accelerated environmental deregulation in Saskatchewan