nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Posts Tagged ‘Heron Island

islands and gorges (day 13 and 14)

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My virtual bike ride continues with a ride from Blackland to Belledune …

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13-14

distance travelled (map from Google Earth)

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8-13  February 5, 2014   20 minutes  3.0 km (Blackland to Sea Side)

8-14   February 8, 2014   35 minutes  7.0 km (Sea Side to west of Belledune)

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As I have said, I have often visited the area I am ‘biking’ through as part of my past work.  In the 1970s and 1980s, we visited many sites in the area to measure the levels of air pollutants in local lichens.  We collected lichens of the genus Cladina (reindeer lichens) since they absorb all of their nutrition from the air and air pollutants accumulate in their tissues …

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species of the lichen ‘Cladina’ grow in tufts on high elevation, rocky areas and in low-lying bogs

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One of our sampling locations was Heron Island, an island 3.5 km long, lying just off the coast …

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satellite image of Heron Island (map from Google Earth)

satellite image of Heron Island (map from Google Earth)

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I have been on the island several times … it was a good place to collect lichens since there are not many local emissions to contaminate the sample (no cars, dusty roads, and so on).

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The island is a landscape of low-lying salt marsh and beach as well as forested and grown-over old-field areas.  On the boat on the way to the island, I remember watching scallop fishermen working on their barges in the shallow waters.  Although people have lived on the island as recently as 1940, the island is now protected and co-managed by the provincial government and First Nations peoples who have traditionally used the island as a summer residence.

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Today’s painting is of a rather stormy day along the bay shore just east of Heron Island …

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February 11, 2014  'Baie des Chaleurs'   Jane Tims

February 11, 2014 ‘Baie des Chaleurs’ Jane Tims

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Also in the area where I was ‘biking’ is the very hilly landscape of the Jacquet River.  The high elevation plateau has been deeply eroded by the Jacquet River – the river and its tributaries flow through deep gorges.  The 26,000 hectare ‘Jacquet River Gorge’ is one of New Brunswick’s Protected Natural Areas.  Reaching the locations of our lichen collections took us deep into the area and I remember how steep the hills (and the roads) were as we went to our collection sites.

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February 17, 2014  'lower Jacquet River'  Jane Tims

February 17, 2014 ‘lower Jacquet River’ Jane Tims

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Copyright  2014  Jane Tims

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