By Ashley Fortney and Marla Anderson

After helping out at the Leader site for a few days we finally got to Sask Landing Provincial Park...just in time for the stormy weather! Despite the rain we did some reconnaissance around our site and found good places to set all of our traps, as well as met most of the Provincial Park staff who are very friendly and EXTREMELY helpful.

Just at the time that we thought we would have a nice day with no rain, our brake line broke! After we got the warning light on the truck and saw the fluid leaking out, we immediately drove to Kal-Tire and left our truck in the parking lot (in fear that it would not be able to make it there if we waited). Of course this was on Saturday after work so we had no work truck until they could fix it on Monday. 

Truck

Until then we set up a pan trap (little cups that catch bees and other invertebrates) in a ditch just outside Swift Current and a couple vane traps in my Grandma and Grandpa’s backyard. Then we spent the rest of the day catching bees in garden plants around town :)

Vane Trap Until then we set up a pan trap (little cups that catch bees and other invertebrates) in a ditch just outside Swift Current and a couple vane traps in my Grandma and Grandpa’s backyard. Then we spent the rest of the day catching bees in garden plants around town :)

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

After our truck was fixed on Monday we went out in search of the infamous giant bullsnakes at Sask Landing...and we caught the world’s smallest bullsnake :D, it was 15 grams! The only snake we saw was a terrestrial garter snake.

Small Bullsnake

We had a fun (although slightly unsuccessful for our purpose) trip with Adam Crosby to Eastend on Tuesday and brought back a couple humming bird-sized bumblebees and a ~6 foot long bullsnake skin (courtesy of Wes Long from the T. rex Discovery Centre). We also got a personal tour of the REAL dinosaur fossils (WE TOUCHED SCOTTY’S TOOTH!!!!!)...it was awesome.

We were scheduled to take out a group of children with the Park staff but unfortunately they had to cancel due to the thunder storm...typical luck with the weather!

While out looking for snakes, Marla came hurrying over the hills to me, holding the container for her nose plugs (which we absolutely had to get to handle going through the garbage at the filleting shacks in search of Walleye/Sauger fins for DNA analysis). She was so excited, and showed me that she had a velvet ant! I was thrilled and asked her if there were more over there. She said that in her excitement she forgot to check. So she took me over to where she found it...and I immediately spotted another one, and it was even a different kind! What luck!

Velvet Ant