By Lisa Houle | June 10th, 2022
As we wrap up our events from Invasive Species Action Month, we are proud to announce the winners of our 5th annual What’s in my Backyard (WIMBY) Photo Contest.
Each year, ISCBC encourages people to get outdoors and photograph the invasive species that may be lurking in their own backyards, parks or back country. Invasives are often closer than you might think!
Contest entrants posted photos from May 1 to May 31 on Instagram and Twitter (using hashtag #WIMBY2022) and directly to our website on our contest platform. Our entrants really came through for us this year! With 432 entries, we received incredible photos of invasive plants, fish, and insects.
This year’s 1st place winner is Spencer Peters for his photo of Yellow flag iris, taken in Creston, BC. Spencer is passionate about nature and helping the environment, with a focus on animals and ecosystem interactions. He is an expert on many aspects of Herpetology including the species of B.C and captive care of a variety of exotic species. “I think that the monitoring and reporting of invasive species is vital in preserving the health of our ecosystems here in BC. Many invasive species alter the environments they get into to such a degree that native species can no longer survive there,” says Spencer. “We as residents of BC must make an effort to halt the spread as best as we can.” Spencer wins a $500 gift card to Bass Pro!
This year’s 2nd place winner is Noah Friesen for his photo of Small mouth bass, taken in Osoyoos, BC. Noah obviously loves to fish, but he’s also an avid hunter and mountain biker, taking every opportunity to get outdoors. “I think it’s important to look out for invasive species because some of those species can really harm the environment around them and even harm native species,” says Noah. Noah wins a $300 gift card for Cabela’s!
This year’s 3rd place winner is Penny Lancaster for her photo of Scotch broom, taken in Duncan, BC. Penny’s interest in identifying local plants started with a botany course in high school, inspiring her to pursue field biology in university. She has since worked in a variety of roles in environmental conservation. She loves exploring outdoors and observing nature and knows the importance of reporting invasive species. “As globalization increases and world population continues to grow, the potential to spread invasive species becomes higher,” says Penny. “Because of this, it is more important than ever to be aware of changes in our environment as invasive species can be detrimental to native plant and animal populations, they lead to reduced biodiversity, and they can even threaten agricultural production.” Penny wins a $200 gift card for MEC!
The WIMBY photo contest may be over for 2022, but you can still do your part to help manage invasive species throughout the year – it’s as easy as photographing and reporting them at bcinvasives.ca/report.
Lisa is the Communications and Outreach Coordinator at ISCBC. She values a diverse environment and connecting with others about environmental protection. In her spare time Lisa enjoys spending time at the ocean and beach combing for sea glass. You can reach Lisa at email@example.com