This Week in History: Royal BC Museum scientists join Canada C3 expedition

This Week in History:  Royal BC Museum scientists join Canada C3 expedition

Canada C3 is an epic 150-day sailing journey from Toronto to Victoria via the Northwest Passage, in honour of Canada’s 150th Anniversary of Confederation in 2017.

The ship is connecting Canadians from coast to coast to coast.

Joel Gibson, the Royal BC Museum‘s Curator of Entomology, says “the idea was to have a diverse spectrum of different types of Canadians to celebrate Canada 150 on this boat.

“To have members of the public, youth ambassadors, cultural figures, artists, musicians, as well as people doing scientific projects.”

Gibson boarded the ship in Prince Rupert.

“It’s leg 13 of 15. We’re going to go to a few places in Haida Gwaii, including the National Park, and a few of the UNESCO heritage sites, and then we’re going to go back across the Hecate Strait, into some of the interior islands, and end up in Bella Bella.

“We’re going to meet with First Nations people, and just local people, but at the same time, I’ll be leading scientific expeditions.”

Gibson will be inviting youth ambassadors and artists on board to join him on those expeditions. “I’ll say, ‘OK, artists and youth ambassadors, let’s get out on the beach and collect some insects’, and see what’s out there, because we don’t have a lot of records of the insects from that part of BC.”

He’s excited about what he and his team may discover. “If the weather’s good, and we get nice sunny days on the beaches, there could be really bizarre things up there.

“You’re just as likely to find Russian spiders and insects as you are to find Californian things, because they move up the coast and they move down the coast.”

The Canada C3 completes its journey in Victoria on October 28.

Veronica CooperVeronica Cooper

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