A group of volunteers has been clearing invasive species along Deer Lake Brook, which seems to be the preferred habitat for the endangered Western painted turtle.
Burnaby Lake is home to the largest known population of the turtles, but the brook, which connects Burnaby Lake and Deer Lake, has been overrun with invasive ivy and blackberry bushes.
"We cleared about 500 square meters of area. It's been pretty huge. We're going to continue working along the brook. We're going to add habitat features, such as basking logs, and potentially another nesting beach," said Deanna MacTavish, a habitat restoration specialist who works for the provincial government's coastal painted turtle team. MacTavish said the turtle population has been doing well, and each year, more than 20 females use the nesting beach the team built at Burnaby Lake.
MacTavish welcomes more volunteers who would like to pull weeds to help the turtles. Volunteers should dress for the weather, wear long sleeves and bring a good pair of gloves.
To get involved, email email@example.com.