Brooklyn Creek in the Comox Valley: It’s surviving, but faces old and new threats from upstream development

Note to Reader:

On his website, retired journalist George Le Masurier has posted a series of articles exploring the adverse effects on our waterways from how municipalities have traditionally managed stormwater runoff, and the slow shift to mimic natural through green infrastructure. In the 3rd in the series, posted in December 2018, he examines the efforts of the Brooklyn Creek Watershed Society to restore fish habitat. He describes challenges resulting from multiple jurisdictional governance, an uncertain future of the creeks’ great asset and a powerful developer operating in its headwaters.

Bob Deane, President, Brooklyn Creek Watershed Society (photo credit:

The problems for Brooklyn Creek begin at its headwaters

“Brooklyn Creek in Comox had an usually big run of salmon two years ago, but it normally can only manage to sustain a smattering of fish. But it does still have fish, primarily thanks to an active group of stream keeper volunteers, who have grand plans to revitalize the creek with a pathway from Comox Bay to Courtenay,” wrote George Le Masurier.

“That the stream can sometimes support salmon and trout in an urban environment is just magic,” Robert Deane, president of the Brooklyn Creek Watershed Society, told Decafnation.

“But it’s more than magic, it’s long hours of hard work by a dedicated group of volunteers. For the last 12 years, society volunteers have done in-stream work on the lower creek section within the Town of Comox to create new fish habitat.”

A multi-jurisdictional dilemma

“Most people think of Brooklyn Creek as a stream that flows through Comox. But Brooklyn Creek actually starts in (the City of) Courtenay,” continues George Le Masurier.

“The lack of a management plan for upper and middle Brooklyn Creek threatens all the work done in Comox. (The Town of) Comox is a stakeholder in Courtenay development, but there’s no multi-party management plan.”

To Learn More:

To read the complete article by George Le Masurier, download Brooklyn Creek: it’s surviving, but faces old and new threats from upstream development

Brooklyn Creek fishway enhancement (photo credit: