Wildlife photographer Clive Bryson captured an image of an adult grebe taking a piece of plastic to a chick. He is concerned the baby will die if it accepted the offering and worried by plastic pollution both at the Salmon Arm wharf and Peter Janninck Park. (Photo contributed)

Photographer snaps ‘disturbing’ photo as bird offers chick a plastic bite

Wildlife photographer laments proliferation of litter in Salmon Arm Bay

  • Jun. 29, 2018 11:30 a.m.

Throwing one piece of plastic on the ground or into the lake may seem unimportant, but the effect on wildlife can be deadly.

On a calm, serene afternoon on Shuswap Lake, talented wildlife photographer Clive Bryson was at Peter Janninck Park in his quest to photograph members of the local grebe population.

Using a high-powered lens, Bryson was able to zoom in on a mother grebe paddling toward one of her babies.

He was shocked and horrified to see that the mother was not carrying a fish in her mouth, but rather a piece of rigid plastic.

“I’ve never seen that before, it’s disturbing,” he says, pointing out the parents sometimes catch huge fish and the babies swallow them. “Subsequent photos do not make clear that the baby took it; sometimes they dip their heads under the water so you can’t see anything, but if it did, it would be dead.”

Peter Janninck Park near Churches Thrift Store is Bryson’s second favourite spot in which to photograph, with the wharf being his preferred location.

Visiting either location three or four times a week to capture images of osprey, grebes and any other wildlife that come into view, Bryson says plastic pollution has been increasing since he moved to Salmon Arm 25 years ago.

“I’ve noticed from the wharf that when the water is low, you can see a lot of plastic in the mud – all types of plastic pollution, and at Peter Janninck, tires, tarps, pop bottles and beer cans are all in the water.”

Bryson suspects much of the plastic pollution is thrown from some boaters who party on the lake and throw their trash into the water.

“We should somehow educate the public about plastic pollution on our lands and waters,” he says.

Kelowna Conservation Officer Ed Seitz agrees with Bryson about the need to educate. He says while most people respect the environment, there are those who treat it like their personal garbage dump.

“We all have to live in the same environment, so let’s keep it clean and tidy,” he says.

For those who don’t get the message, there are consequences under the BC Environmental Act.

Conservation officers and police are able to hand out tickets in the amount of $115 when they see someone throwing something on the ground. That’s the minimum cost, Seitz says, noting tickets for larger offences could be as high as $575.

He recommends that anyone who witnesses littering or dumping report a violation to the Conservation Officer Service online or contact the conservation officer 24-hour hotline to report a violation at 1-877-952-7277 or #7277 on the Telus Mobility Network.


@SalmonArm
barbbrouwer@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Replica totem pole to be raised at Peace Arch Park

‘Reconciliation ceremony’ will include SFN leaders, provincial politicians

ELECTION QUESTIONS: Does Surrey need its own police force?

Who’s on the right side of Surrey RCMP’s contract issue debate? That’s for voters to decide on Oct. 20

WEB POLL: Is Surrey a safer city since the last election?

Crime and public safety continue to be hot button election issues

Gill says he’s ‘prepared’ to make handguns ‘biggest’ issue in Surrey civic election

Surrey First slate reveals second part of its public safety platform Thursday

BC Housing withdraws application for Cloverdale supportive housing

Application withdrawn, open house cancelled following community opposition

VIDEO: Surrey’s Civic Hotel hosts grand opening

Hotel’s theme is ‘Celebrating B.C.’ with each floor representing a different region

First Nations block roads to stop the moose hunt in B.C.’s Interior

Chief Joe Alphonse confirmed Thursday they’ve deactivated the Raven Lake Road and the Mackin Creek Road just before the Island Lake turnoff

Canada signs global pact to help rid world’s oceans of abandoned fishing gear

The federal Fisheries Minister says it’s a ‘critical issue’

GOP pushing forward for Kavanaugh, accuser wants ‘fairness’

Kavanaugh has denied al allegations of sexual misconduct

Police probe suspicious death of man in Richmond

A body was found in the area of Garden City and Odlin Roads in Richmond just after 8:30am Thursday

Lower Mainland woman sets Grouse Grind record

Madison Sands sets a new best time on Vancouver’s fitness landmark

Tent city campers now allowed to stay in B.C. provincial park

Contrary to earlier reports, Ministry of Environment says there is no deadline for campers to leave Greater Victoria camp site

Bus company vies to replace Greyhound in Kamloops to Vancouver, Kelowna

Alberta-based Ebus applies to the Passenger Transportation Board to replace Greyhound

Former VP of Lululemon joins B.C. cannabis cultivation facility

Kerry Biggs will be the chief financial officer of True Leaf, in Lumby

Most Read