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Last updateTue, 23 Jan 2018 4pm

Speaker Series explores how giant mammals colonized Vancouver Island

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The January 25 session of the 2018 Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology’s Speaker Series is a presentation by Dr. Michael Wilson, Douglas College, British Columbia, entitled “Crossing to the Islands: Late Ice-Age Mammals on Vancouver Island and the San Juan Islands.”
As the last ice sheet retreated 14,000 years ago, three giant mammal species—bison, ground sloth and short-faced bear—colonized Vancouver Island and the San Juan Islands. Megafauna (large or giant animals) fossils from the islands are rare due to acidic soils, but survive in pond deposits buffered by lime from underlying marine shells. Megafauna thrived south of the ice during the last glacial period, but how they colonized the islands and then left, continues to captivate palaeontologists. By 12,000 years ago, the megafauna were gone and the islands were no longer pine parklands with grassy patches, but a closed canopy of Douglas fir and hemlock. Scientists have proposed many different theories, from swimming, crossing land bridges, and post-glacial warming, to the possible role humans played in the extinction of these animals.
In his talk, Dr. Wilson will explain how the search for answers about how megafauna colonized the Vancouver Island and the San Juan Islands continues to be one of the Pacific Northwest’s most compelling palaeontological topics.
The Royal Tyrrell Museum’s Speaker Series talks are free and open to the public. The series is held every Thursday until April 26 at 11:00 a.m. in the Museum auditorium. Speaker Series talks are also available on the Museum’s YouTube channel:

Wayward Bible finds way back to local family

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    Two weeks have passed since a Dunphy resident’s Bible returned to Drumheller.
    Doug Wade, an active St. Magloire’s church member coordinated with Salmon Arm, B.C. local Jeanetta Zorn to have the Bible returned. Zorn found the bible while sorting through donated books at her church thrift store.
    In last week’s edition, the reporters at the Mail explored the Bible’s contents to find an accurate owner in the area.
    They discovered that the most likely owner was Mr. John Henry Tarbuck as his name was written in loose cursive writing on a small letter inside. He was a Dunphy resident who passed away in late January of 1946 which was discovered through direct Mail archives.
    Many of Tarbuck’s remaining family still live in the area like Chris Lowen, a grandson to Tarbuck. He read the story and immediately came in contact with Wade to collect the family heirloom.
    Lowen fondly remembers the Bible explaining that it was used in times when he was ‘more bad than good’.
    “The only way we learned was from my grandmother because she was very religious.
    We didn’t get away with much mischief as I’d end up with a finger on my ear into the living room and then get a lecture,” Lowen chuckled.         “She’d give us a piece of homemade toffee afterwards.         She made that homemade toffee for years.”
    Tarbuck’s property was along the Kneehill Creek which feeds into the Red Deer River. He had a large greenhouse stationed along the creek which was an important source of his income.
    “He hauled vegetables and stuff all over Drumheller Valley to make a living,” continued Lowen. “When I was a kid, we used to go and stay there for the summer holidays, she was down at Dunphy on the crick there so [the Bible] has a little bit of meaning for me.”
    The reason behind why this artifact ended up in B.C. was because of Tarbuck’s son Jack Tarbuck Jr. He moved to an area between Kelowna and Victoria to remain close to his immediate family. The Mail further found that he passed away seven years ago.
    The theory behind why the Bible was found in a thrift store may come from when his children were cleaning and discarding old belongings after Jack’s passing.
    Since then, other members of the family have come forward to claim the book but were happy to know that Lowen had it in his possession.
    Lowen and his wife called on Monday night to thank Jeanetta for returning the Bible home safely.

Strong support for Salvation Army over Christmas

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Despite missing their initial goal of raising $40,000 through the Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign, the church is grateful to the community for its support of the programs it delivers to the most vulnerable in our community.
    The Salvation Army Kettle Campaign raised $36,037.58.
    “We didn’t get our goal of $40,000, but we did get $36,000 so that is pretty amazing,” said Shane Hillier of the Salvation Army.
    There were a number of factors that may have contributed to the shortfall, including a tough economic climate.  This was made apparent by the 158 hampers the Salvation Army provided to individuals and families in need.
    “From what we saw throughout the year, we were really surprised at the demand we had,” said Hillier.
    The Salvation Army was also short one kettle location because of the closure of the Drumheller Co-op.
    The funds raised by the Kettle Campaign fund the Salvation Army’s Community Services for the year and the funds stay local to serve the community.
    At times when the Salvation Army food bank supplies dwindle, the organization has to dip into these funds to buy food. By keeping food donations strong it allows the funds to be used for other pressing needs.
    “2018 is probably going to be a busy year. There is still a need in the new year, so we hope people keep that in mind when they are picking up groceries,” said Hillier.

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