Making their Mark on Guichon Creek: Moscrop Students step up for fish

By Brennan Strandberg-Salmon and Kevin Lin, Grade 11 Students at Moscrop Secondary School

Moscrop Secondary school students gathered last week on the streets that border Guichon Creek to raise awareness in the local school neighbourhood about problems with storm drain run-offs and the health of the fish population. Many of the students, who had been recruited from the school’s environmental club, were keen to improve conditions in the creek and ensure that local neighbours had information on how they could help improve water quality in the creek.

The major focus of the afternoon was painting yellow fish beside storm drain grates. “The yellow fish is a reminder to local neighbours that storm drain runoff flows into local creeks like Guichon,” said Kevin Lin, one of the student organizers.

Another major focus was distributing flyers to all the houses throughout the neighbourhood near the creek. “The flyers provide information to local residents on the importance of protecting our hidden waterways,” said Brennan Strandberg-Salmon, another student organizer from Moscrop. The students distributed over 150 flyers and painted 22 yellow fish during their two-hour blitz of the neighbourhood.

Both Lin and Strandberg-Salmon have been working as volunteers for the Stoney Creek Environment Committee (SCEC), a streamkeeper organization dedicated to protecting fish populations in Stoney Creek. SCEC is one of many streamkeeper organizations in the lower mainland that have been successful in not only protecting local creeks but also supporting the return of spawning salmon.

Many natural and human-caused events threaten the health of Burnaby rivers every year. Rivers are home not only to history and resources, but also a large biodiversity that is crucial to maintaining a stable and lush environment. Its thanks to many active community members that our creeks continue to thrive. If you’re interested in playing a role in your community, you can get involved with streamkeeper groups like SCEC or environmental organizations like Evergreen to volunteer and keep our beautiful rivers flowing. After all, Guichon Creek would not look as good as it does now if it weren’t for restoration efforts in 2006 from the community, and it might look better in the future thanks to these great volunteers.