Welcome to BC Write! The “BC” in the website’s title stands for two aspects of the site: British Columbia and Biology Centre. In some of my posts, I share my discoveries and experiences related to the beautiful province of British Columbia in Canada, where I live. In others, I share facts about the fascinating world of biology, though these also have a link to the province. The posts in the “Biology” section of the site refer to research by local scientists or include scientific facts about local organisms.

The photographs on this website were taken by me, are public domain or Creative Commons commercial images, or are used with permission. Photography is one of my hobbies. I always have a camera with me when I go for a walk.


Part of the Photo Session sculpture in Queen Elizabeth Park (Sculptor: J. Seward Johnson, Junior)

My Background

I write about biology, nature, and other topics at several sites, as described on my “About Me” page. I have a first class honours degree in biology. I  have many years of experience in teaching high school students in British Columbia and have also taught upper elementary ones. I’ve been a nonfiction and a creative writer for a long time. I’ve also been a fan of the arts and an avid walker for a long time.


The five sails and the pier at Canada Place in Vancouver

Exploring the Blog

My blog posts can be accessed in multiple ways. In addition to clicking on items in the menu bar, clicking on the links at the bottom of each post, in the footer of each page, and in the sidebar when it’s present will enable you to explore the blog.

My posts don’t always stay as they were when I published them. I update them when I discover new information about a topic, have related ideas to discuss, or have new photos to add.


The Siwash Rock is a 32 million-year-old sea stack by Stanley Park’s seawall.

The Province of British Columbia

British Columbia is located on the west coast of Canada next to the Pacific Ocean, as shown on the map below. The capital city of the province is Victoria, which is located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island. Despite its name, the city of Vancouver isn’t located on the island. It’s located in the southwest corner of the mainland region of the province instead. A ferry system connects the mainland and the island.

British Columbia has some beautiful scenery, including several impressive mountain ranges.  The province contains seven national parks and many provincial ones. Its natural history, culture, and communities are very interesting to explore and provide great inspiration for a writer.


Map of Canada including British Columbia by E Pluribus Anthony, public domain license

10 Official BC Symbols and Statistics

  • The official tree of British Columbia is the western red cedar (Thuja plicata). Its name is also written as “western redcedar” to indicate that it’s not a true cedar.
  • The official floral emblem is the Pacific dogwood (Cornus nuttallii). The plant grows as a tree about six to eight metres tall and produces large flowers in the spring. It’s illegal to pick the flowers. (Source: Government of British Columbia)
  • The official bird of British Columbia is the Steller’s jay (Cyanacitta stelleri).
  • The official mammal is the Spirit Bear or the Kermode Bear (Ursus americanus kermodei). The animal is a black bear with a genetic mutation that causes it to have white fur.
  • The official fish is the Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus). Seven species of salmon are included in the genus and the symbol: the pink, sockeye, chinook, chum, coho, cutthroat, and steelhead salmon.
  • The official gemstone is jade, which is mined in many parts of the province.
  • The longest river in the province is the Fraser River at 1,375 kilometres in length (4,511 feet).
  • The tallest mountain is Mount Fairweather at a height of 4,671 metres (15,325 feet).
  • As of January 1st, 2019, the population of BC was 5,020,302 people. (Source: BC Stats)
  • In 2018, the province received a record-breaking 6.1 million international tourists. (Source: BC Stats)
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The design used on the flag of British Columbia (Image provided by the Government of British Columbia)

The Provincial Flag

The different parts of the image used on the flag of British Columbia have a symbolic meaning.

  • The section at the top of the design shows the Royal Union Flag (often called the Union Jack) and represents British Columbia’s British heritage.
  • The crown in the centre of the Royal Union Flag represents the royal family.
  • The setting sun symbolizes the fact that British Columbia is Canada’s most westerly province.
  • The wavy white and blue lines represent the ocean. They symbolize the location of BC between the Pacific Ocean on its western border and the Rocky Mountains on its eastern one.

The flag design was officially adopted in 1960. Any resident may fly the flag, but the government asks that it’s treated with dignity. Symbols are important for any country or region, including the province of British Columbia.