The Manitoba Orchid:
Newsletter of Native Orchid Conservation Inc.
Vol 1 Issue 1 December 1998

Native Orchid Conservation Inc.
35 St.Michael Rd, Winnipeg,MB R2M2K7

Annual General Meeting: 7pm Wednesday January 13 at 35 St.Michael Rd.

  • Ratification of Constitution by the members.
  • Election of officers to the Board.

    Board meets at 7pm on first Wednesday of each month at same address.

    All members are welcome.

  • A Short History on Native Orchid Conservation Inc.

    Native Orchid Conservation Inc. (NOCI) was formed on April 15, 1998 by Bud Ewacha and several others sharing Bud's interest in the conservation of native orchid species. The executive of NOCI consists of Bud Ewacha as President, Doris Ames as Vice-President, Richard Reeves as Treasurer, and Peggy Johannesen as the Membership Chair. Secretarial duties are shared among all.

    In July of 1998, Joan Ewacha suggested the Moccasin Flower (C. acaule) with its deep pink and green colours as the new orchid conservation organization's logo. This selection was unanimously endorsed by the members at the July Board meeting.

    In September, the NOCI Constitution and bylaws were drafted and ratified by the Board. (John Neufeld prepared the document as well as the amendments to the incorporation papers.)

    Special thanks goes out to members Mary Wiebe, Doris Ames, and Richard Reeves for their creativity. Mary Wiebe designed the Moccasin Flower logo, and Doris Ames designed the NOCI promotional bookmarks, and assisted Richard Reeves in designing the NOCI promotional brochures. The bookmarks and brochures have been successfully distributed at various promotional and educational events across the province.

    Thanks also to Bud Ewacha and Rosewitha Nowak who created the Native Orchid Conservation Inc. Mission Statement which was subsequently accepted by the Board.

    A copy of our Mission Statement and objectives will be distributed to members.

    What have we been doing?

    Our newly formed organization has worked on several projects this year related to the conservation of rare or endangered plant species including orchids.

    Here are three projects of special interest:

    1. We are conducting a botanical survey of native plant species in the Gull Lake Wetlands area just north of Winnipeg on the east side of Lake Winnipeg. We have received a $5000 grant from Manitoba Hydro to conduct this survey as well as a smaller grant that Bud Ewacha received prior to the formation of NOCI. The Gull Lake Wetlands contains at current count 28 species of native orchids (including the rose pogonia), eight species of carnivorous plants, and many other rare and endangered plants. An interim report will be published shortly. The pleasant fall weather and lack of snow assisted greatly in recent work at the site which included the gathering of seed pods.

    2. The effect of selective cutting on native orchids growing in a cedar bog habitat in the Sandilands Forest Reserve is being studied. This is a five-year study and we are thankful for the help of the Honourable David Newman in acquiring a grant of $7071.00 from the Manitoba Department for Sustainable Development to make this research possible.

    3. We can thank the concern of Mary Wiebe and Doris Ames for the protection of a 1-hectare plot of pine forest containing the rare Trailing Arbutus and five species of native orchids. This location, the former site of an East Braintree area garbage dump, was slated to become eligible for logging. Bud Ewacha spoke to the local Conservation Officer and to the Dept. of Natural Resources and we are happy to say that clearcutting of this area has been prevented and the plants are protected. Thanks go out to Bud, Richard Reeves, Henry Kotyk, Jac and Mary Wiebe, and Doris Ames for marking out the area.

    Generating Awareness & Fund Raising:

    We continue to raise funds, publicize, and prepare educational displays geared toward raising awareness toward native plant conservation in the Province of Manitoba. We recently received a $500 grant from the R.M. of St. Clements to help with our expenses on the Gull Lake project. We are currently visiting other rural municipalities in which we have active projects with the hope of educating them about our native orchid heritage and securing financial assistance.

    Members will be interested in viewing our new promotional display which highlights our various projects and which helps to visually get our messageacross to the public. In addition, Bud is busy preparing a conservation display on Manitoba Native Orchid Conservation for the upcoming 16th World Orchid Conference to be held in Vancouver in April/May of 1999.

    You may have seen the November 11, 1998 article highlighting our own celebrity, Bud Ewacha, and Native Orchid Conservation Inc. in the Lance and several other community newspapers. We have also had commentary in the Free Press and the Dawson Trail Dispatch and are happy to have received good response from publicized visits to the University of Manitoba. Thanks goes out to Richard Reeves who is creating a Web Site for our organization which will serve to further extend our reach.

    See you at the Annual General Meeting on January 13th !