Brett Christiansen

On June 15th at Royston Wrecks, two youth from the Youth and Ecological Restoration Program (YER) will lead a public tour about Great Blue Herons.  This is a YER, Phase II project made possible with funding from Ministry of Children and Family Development, Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society (MARS), Comox Valley Environmental Council and UNIFOR Local 3019.

Great Blue Herons are a species at risk with the BC Conservation Data Centre, so it is critical that we protect their habitat.  In 2013 YER partnered with MARS to document herons and their foraging behaviour in the Comox Valley.  Youth conducted behavioural observations in the Courtenay River Estuary from Royston Wrecks and were instrumental in locating one of the most populated foraging areas.  They learned about the estuary and its significance as a feeding area for the herons, as well as other species.

In 2014 YER and MARS are extending this study for a YERII project with two YER, Phase I graduates, the YER coordinator and a biologist to continue to collect scientific data on the herons.  YERII focus is on a specific project for youth to advance learning about ecological information, research techniques, and collaboration and communication skills.  Completion involves the two youth leading a public tour of the project site.  Registered Professional Biologist, Ian Moul, authored the heron report for MARS last year and will be guiding the YERII project.


David Hansen

Please join us for this youth led public tour on June 15th at 12:00 pm to learn about Great Blue Herons.  (Royston Wrecks is located south of Courtenay, turn left onto Hilton Road and drive down to the parking area at the beach.)

FMI contact Wendy Kotilla at or 250-336-8487