Gateway Gazette

Parks Canada invites volunteers to the Knapweed Rodeo weed pull in Waterton Lakes National Park!

Pitch in and head off a stampede of millions of invasive, non-native seeds! The Knapweed Rodeo is the perfect opportunity for those who want to don a cowboy hat (or any sun hat), dig in, get their hands dirty and contribute to the protection of Waterton Lakes National Park. This volunteer event takes place on Saturday, July 22, 2017 starting at 9 a.m. Volunteers will work side by side with Parks Canada experts to help contain the spread of non-native Spotted Knapweed and restore the natural habitat of the endangered Half-moon Hairstreak Butterfly!

Those who register by end of day, Wednesday, July 19th, receive a free BBQ-style lunch on the day of the event. The event also includes door prizes and friendly competitions. This year, the Knapweed Rodeo is part of a circuit of “meet your neighbors” weed pulls organized in cooperation with the Nature Conservancy of Canada, Alberta Parks, the Castle Crown Wilderness Coalition, the Pincher Creek Watershed Group and the Helen Schuler Nature Centre.

Parks Canada is continually looking for fun, innovative ways to engage Canadians in their natural and cultural heritage and as the country’s largest tourism provider, we are committed to providing visitors with exceptional and meaningful experiences at our places. In 2016, volunteers and staff removed a whopping 32 bags of invasive knapweed. The 2016 winner of our “Heavy Hitter” award given to the individual who pulls the most knapweed removed 48 pounds!  Each plant can produce up to 250,000 seeds. So even just one volunteer pulling one bag full is a big help in stopping the spread of knapweed.

We are encouraging volunteers to sign up for this great event.

More information on the event is available here: http://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/ ab/waterton/activ/benevolat- volunteer/programme-program# knapweedrodeo 

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