|BOTANICAL ELECTRONIC NEWS|
No. 135 May 9, 1996
Dr. Bill Dore died in Ottawa on April 17, 1996, on his 84th birthday. He was born in Ottawa in 1912, studied at Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario (B.A. in 1933), received his M.Sc. degree from McGill University in Montreal (1935), and his Ph.D. from Ohio State University (1948). He was was a Professor-Lecturer and Assistant Professor at the Dalhousie University (1937-1945) and Assistant Professor at the Ontario Agricultural College (1946-1947). In 1947 he went to the Plant Research Institute in Ottawa where he was an Associate and later Senior Botanist until his retirement in 1977.
Bill Dore's specialty was taxonomy of grasses and the ecology of grasslands, and he had a good knowledge of aquatic vascular plants and of the Ontario flora. He was the senior author of a manual of grasses of Ontario (Dore, W.G. & J. McNeill. 1980. Grasses of Ontario. Agriculture Canada Research Branch Monogr. 26. 566 p.).
I met Bill Dore in 1980's. He was delighted to hear that I was working on the application of his technique of measuring light using anthracene polymerization as my first plant ecology project at the Charles University in Prague (Dore, W.G. 1958. A simple chemical light meter. Ecology 39: 151-152.). In 1988, he came for the Canadian Botanical Association meeting to Victoria, and I remember how he caressed the tiny plants of Alopecurus carolinianus that I showed him in Uplands Park.
Stephen Darbyshire, who succeeded Dr. Dore in the DAO wrote me the following notes:
"Among Bill's wonderful contributions to botany has been the warmth and help he has shown students and a plethora of colleagues. Many times his generosity made its way into other people's works with little acknowledgement. I learned so much from him and wish that I had only half his power of perception."
"I have been seeing Bill pretty regularly for the last 18 years or so. He was always so delighted to have someone to talk botany with. After his wife Doris died (about 1984), he really had a hard time of it. It was such a frustration for him to have the mental capability and desire for active work, but not the physical capability: his hands became too shaky to write legibly; his legs would not let him kneel in the garden; his reactions too slow to drive a car to a collecting site; his stamina too short to work for more than half an hour at a time."
Bill Dore was a founding member of the Canadian Botanical Association and a honourary member of the Ottawa Field-Naturalists' Club (one of few members with more than 50 years of membership).
The Washington Native Plant Society seeks a skilled, motivated half-time administrative assistant. Tasks include Board meeting minutes, word processing, copying, mailing, filing, correspondence. Process memberships and maintain mailing list. Develop written materials. Assist Board members with volunteer management and recruitment, publicity, marketing, fund raising, and special projects. Build this office from the ground up; help this 20 year old organization be even more effective!
Candidates must be well-organized, detail-oriented, self-starting and have strong communication and computer skills. Some travel. 20 hours/week; $12.00/hour plus benefits. Send cover letter, resume, and one page writing sample to WNPS, 836 NE 58th Street, Seattle, WA 98105.
Deadline for receipt of applications: 25 May 1996.
It struck me recently (as I'm sure it has struck others) that we have a lot of new protected areas. Most are incompletely known--if at all--in terms of ecology, recreation, cultural heritage, and management issues. But they must be managed. And the Protected Areas Strategy is not done yet, at least on paper.
We also seem to have fewer and fewer people around who have real field knowledge of these protected areas (not just the new ones!), and of the geographic region (or ecosection or whatever) that these protected areas represent or occur in. So who is going to develop the management plans, who assess the significance of the protected resources and their relationship to managed resources on the surrounding unprotected lands, who address current management problems and anticipate emerging issues in provincial, national, and international contexts? The new technology is powerful and wondrous, but somewhere in this process of "Now what do we do?" we need not just GIS operators but some people who've actually set foot in (say) the Kitimat Ranges or on the Chilcotin Plateau.
It has struck me repeatedly during the PAS process of the last few years just how little, wide-ranging on-the-ground knowledge there is among government staff involved in gap analysis, Regional Protected Areas Teams, and Land & Resource Management Plans. Localized knowledge and experience exists, but synoptic field experience combined with the contextual knowledge that confers meaning---the big picture, the provincial (at least) perspective---is very uncommon. Those who have this combination are mostly in my age class (40-50 years) or older. The pool of knowledge and experience is draining as people move on; the younger staff for the most part aren't picking it up, or do not have the opportunity to learn. We cannot rely entirely on consultants to fill the knowledge gap, partly because even management by contracting-out requires some strategic direction and quality control, and partly because the ranks of consultants are affected by the same demographic. Nor is the academic community much help: same demographic, and progress up the academic ladder these days is hindered rather than helped by doing extensive fieldwork. Specialization and prolific publication are key to success. There are no more Vladimir Krajinas or Bert Brinks at our B.C. universities.
Back in the 1970s young staff acquired this kind of knowledge and experience on the job because circumstances included:
Anyway, times have changed. But it is not too late to forestall the end of experience. Why not set up an interagency field training program, sort of an in-service Field Academy? Selected individuals, judged to be key to PAS and the management of protected areas, would be invited to spend 2-4 weeks each field season with a few Experienced Mentors, doing fieldwork in selected ecosections throughout the province. So as to be more than a mere junket, and to help build the knowledge base for these incompletely known protected areas, the fieldwork would include collection of information (according to established protocols) and case studies of management issues. Such sessions would have to be long enough to do something substantive, but not so lengthy as to disrupt people's personal lives or their programs.
If you think this is an idea worth pursuing, please circulate this note as you see fit. I would be prepared to devote some time to it.
This is the second edition of a popular vascular species list of the Olympic Peninsula. New data on species distributions were included and the nomenclature has been updated respecting changes that have occurred since the publication of the Vascular plants of the Pacific Northwest by Hitchcock et al. The chapter on origins of the Olympic Flora (the Olympocentric View), and annotated notes for numerous taxa contain a wealth of information for anyone interested in phytogeography and plant taxonomy of the Pacific Northwest.
In this third edition of Chris Brayshaw's popular manual (first published in 1973) Chris updated the text and added a new chapter on insect pests in herbaria and their control. The book also lists the main herbarium resources in British Columbia and Canada and gives number of references useful for identification of vascular plants, bryophytes and lichens.
The British Columbia Ministry of Forests (which made a financial contribution to Chris Brayshaw's publication) simultaneously published their own "Techniques and procedures for collecting, preserving, processing and storing botanical specimens" (B.C. Ministry of Forests, Working Paper 18/1996, 39 p. - no charge). This publication has a similar scope and contents as the "Plant collecting for the amateur," but the useful information is overshadowed by some grave mistakes and blunders, especially in the "Glossary of terms" and reference citations.
Submissions, subscriptions, etc.: email@example.com.
BEN is archived on gopher freenet.victoria.bc.ca. The URL is:
gopher://freenet.victoria.bc.ca:70/11/environment/Botany/ben. Also archived at http://www.ou.edu/cas/botany-micro/ben/