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article imageOp-Ed: Colony Farm Habitat Enhancement Project, Port Coquitlam, BC Special

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By Joseph Boltrukiewicz     Nov 14, 2011 in Environment
Port Coquitlam - On a few occassions I wrote both articles and blogs about Colony Farm, a place of relax mostly for people of Tri-City (Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody), ecologically healthy area of greenery some 20 mins away from always busy Vancouver.
A short walk to this really nice area close to my place of living brought to me quite another revelation. Big areas of constantly green fields with no access to general public, lazy creeks and bushes that have so far been nesting areas for birds were subject to Colony Farm Habitat Enhancement Project. Where people couldn't have access to before, heavy duty machinery came with their destructive power.
In the included information one can get the information about the project:
Planning and studies for this project began in 2008 with preliminary discussions between PMH1 Project staff, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Kwikwetlem First Nation and Metro Vancouver. Design consultation started in 2009, with input from Colony Farm Park Association and others to develop and refine preliminary designs for the project.
Heavy duty machinery ready to be removed after the project  Colony Farm  Port Coquitlam  BC.
Heavy duty machinery ready to be removed after the project, Colony Farm, Port Coquitlam, BC.
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The project is a smaller part of so called PMH1 (Port Mann/Highway 1) Project in close proximity of new constructed bridge in the presence of old Port Mann Bridge that links community of still growing Surrey and Langley community over the Fraser river.
The main purpose of the project was to restore better water flow within the area of the Colony Farm and to enhance and again encourage migration of coho and chinook salmon the way it used to be some 100 years ago when Colony Farm was at peak of its food production glorious performance.
Larger areas of what used to be layers of thick grass destroyed by landscaping machinery and creeks ...
Larger areas of what used to be layers of thick grass destroyed by landscaping machinery and creeks' banks with their ner, more regular shapes, Colony Farm, Port Coquitlam, BC.
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To achieve this, some 3 tidal flow restoration sub projects are run to correct the existing infrastructure of the gates and sluices system. They include installation of tidal gates that will keep appropriate level of water, sluice gates will control the level of water between the north and south section of Wilson Farm and pump station project that will take incoming waters at the end of Wilson Farm and return its excess to Coquitlam River.
Ducks having fun in their new environment  Colony Farm  Port Coquitlam  BC.
Ducks having fun in their new environment, Colony Farm, Port Coquitlam, BC.
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On the first look the area looks not really interesting. What used to be a nice area of wild and thick carpet of grass is now levelled to the ground with some 6-8 pieces of heavy duty landscaping equipment that was working almost around the clock in August and September.
Miraculously, local ducks that were nesting in grass and bushes along the banks of creeks don't seem to be discouraged much with the presence of the equipment that ruined their households a few months ago. They still have their fun in water that suddenly came to where it was not before.
Upgraded area of Colony Farm with Port Mann Bridge under enhancement project at the background.
Upgraded area of Colony Farm with Port Mann Bridge under enhancement project at the background.
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The area of Colony Farm is still accessible for people, both walking and biking and so far as much as approximately 40% of the entire area of the colony is affected by the landscaping projects. It seems to be a good thing that such a project started at the end of vegetation season to give the nature a chance to recover in the fall and winter months to fully bloom back again in spring time.
A small pond at the edge of the Farm is unaffected, a cute place where nice red winged black birds have numerous nests. In the spring time night, the pond converts itself into a concert hall of its own where local frogs croaking to the most varied tunes possible.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m7j6YdutbKA
The south-eastern corner of the Farm is the place where the most funky shapes, sizes and colours of horse tail can be found. In fall time they have their own and specific look as well.
Unusual horse tail  a rich source of silica  Colony Farm  Port Coquitlam  BC.
Unusual horse tail, a rich source of silica, Colony Farm, Port Coquitlam, BC.
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Unusual horse tail  a rich source of silica  Colony Farm  Port Coquitlam  BC
Unusual horse tail, a rich source of silica, Colony Farm, Port Coquitlam, BC
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This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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