Back on Track

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Written by Jean-Michel DeVink
Thursday, May 16, 2013

Photo of Jean-Michel DeVink.Today we finished our wind-delayed transects. Conditions improved greatly and we’re back on track. The beginning of one of our transects has been invaded by oil and gas development. I counted five oil rigs drilling within sight of the beginning of our transect, and the gravel grid road the survey follows has been built up and improved, likely to accommodate heavy truck traffic. A few new wells are within the transect boundary, and some well pads and approaches have decimated a few smaller ponds. Conditions in the southcentral portion of the province are again good, but not excellent. Wind seems to have played a part in the distribution of snow on the landscape, as some sections are full of water while ones nearby look quite dry. Farmers are taking advantage of the dryer weather we’ve had for several weeks to treat and seed fields for hopefully another bumper year of production. It’s always good to have happy farmers when one goes to ask permission to hunt their fields in the fall, and a bumper crop year usually goes a long way to help with that.

According to the folks on the weather station, today is our last day of nice weather for surveying. They’re forecasting some rain over the next few days, but hopefully not so much that it keeps us off survey. Weather delays seem quite frustrating this year, especially after our record last year of going 14 straight days on the ground without a delay.

Kevin Dufour, CWS biologist, scans a large pond on transect with a spotting scope.

Kevin Dufour, CWS biologist, scans a large pond on transect with a spotting scope. Photo by Jean-Michel DeVink, CWS