Rithet’s Bog on Vancouver Island

January 28, 2020

Rithet's Bog

Photographer: Rebecca Roush 
Summary Author: Rebecca Roush 

Southern Vancouver Island in British Columbia (Canada) was once home to many peat bogs. As human development has transformed the Saanich Peninsula, north of Victoria, there’s just one peat bog remaining.

Human impact is recent and shallow; the geological history here indicates that glacial activity had a far greater effect on the area. For instance, prior to the existence of Rithet’s Bog (shown above) as it appears today, a 50 ft (15 m) marine shell layer had formed.

Currently, the health of Rithet’s Bog is a result of significant efforts to return it to a natural state after years of neglect. Several decades ago, it was drained and subjected to severe ecological damage. However, in 1996 it was donated to the municipality of Saanich, with the intent of it being reclaimed as a nature sanctuary. This restoration began in 2002, including regulation of water levels, removing willows, and biofiltration swales. Rithet’s Bog is now a park with trails and is considered an “ecological hotspot on Vancouver Island.” Photo taken on January 10, 2020.

Photo Details: Camera: SONY DSC-WX220; Exposure Time: 0.0080s (1/125); Aperture: ƒ/3.3; ISO equivalent: 100; Focal Length: 4.5mm.