Nearly 100 people turned out to Vernon City Hall in support of protecting the heron habitat from development disruption on June 8, 2020. (Caitlin Clow - Vernon Morning Star)

Nearly 100 people turned out to Vernon City Hall in support of protecting the heron habitat from development disruption on June 8, 2020. (Caitlin Clow - Vernon Morning Star)

LETTER: Raise your voice for Vernon herons

Public hearing set for restrictive covenant Sept. 14 at Vernon rec centre

There is a public hearing on Sept. 14 at 5:30 p.m. at the Rec Centre. I am encouraging everyone to come and add your voice to whether to have a protective covenant on the Heronry Property during the heron’s breeding and rearing time.

I am concerned that the restrictive covenant to protect the Great Blue Heron Vernon Heronry will not be continued by this council. For the few short months each year that these distinctive birds nest and raise their young in our city, any way possible to mitigate harm to them should be embraced.

All over the world, bird populations are declining and the main reason for this decline is human-caused habitat loss. I am not going to lecture you on something all of you are aware of. But I am asking you to consider protecting another variable that makes our city so beautiful, desirable and unique. The herons are as much a part of our city as the ski hill and orchards. They are an attraction for residents and tourists alike. They are educational for our children and a delight for all ages.

I used to take my young children to see the heronry and now those grown children take their children.

We take out-of-town guests. Maybe not everyone finds this natural wonder as compelling as wine tasting, but I can assure you that a large number of people love watching birds.

Vernon can add the heronry to the long list of unique attractions and wonders of our area.

It is your privilege and responsibility to protect these large, very visible, wonderful birds that are impossible to ignore as they majestically fly overhead.

Please encourage our city council to vote in favour of a restrictive covenant during the months the herons are in our community.

Thank you very much.

Respectfully,

Joan DeBella,

Vernon

READ MORE: Fall hearing for Vernon heron rookery

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