What’s Outside

Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre was conceived in 2011 by a small group of local residents, including parents, educators, naturalists, fishermen and business people, who saw the Estuary as both a natural treasure and also an ecosystem at risk. It was originally created as a project of the Cowichan Land Trust in cooperation with the Cowichan Valley Regional District, the Cowichan Valley Naturalists, Cowichan Tribes, and many energetic local volunteers, including the Rotary Club of Duncan.

Together, with more than 300 hours of volunteer labour, we built the Nature Centre and our wildlife viewing tower. Herb Rice made and installed our wonderful sign out front.

The Nature Centre’s official opening was held on Saturday, April 21, 2012, and we celebrate our B’Earth Day on the Earth Day weekend every year.

After you’ve explored the inside of the nature centre, we hope you’ll take a walk along our interpretive trail. It leads from the centre to the viewing tower (and beyond). There are many wonderful native plants to enjoy along this trail, as well as views of the estuary.

When you get to the viewing tower, climb up and take a look around. There’s some great bird and other wildlife watching opportunities up there!

When you’re leaving, you might notice some solar panels on the roof of the Nature Centre. These were installed with financial support from TD Friends of the Environment Foundation and Viridian Energy Co-operative and provide some of the energy needed to operate our pumps, chillers, lights, computers, and heating (which is provided by a high-efficiency heat pump).