Experts warn of potential drought conditions across Vancouver Island
Drier-than-normal conditions have those who keep a watchful eye on water levels and snowpacks on Vancouver Island sounding the alarm.
"It's challenging for us to go through these situations" says BC Hydro spokesperson Stephen Watson. "We're setting records every year in terms of extreme wet or dry and this spring's been very dry and the summer is forecast to be warmer and dryer than normal."
The power authority uses a "water supply forecast" that runs from February to September to measure snowpacks and rainfall against historical data. Watson says BC Hydro is doing what it can to conserve water flows.
That's a similar situation in Nanaimo where the coordinator of the regional district's water supply is encouraging residents to cut back on their water usage.
"Take a second, learn what watering restrictions are in effect within your area" urges Julie Pisani.
"Understand that the reason for water restrictions is so that we can keep essential water sources intact for reservoir, for essential water use and fire protection."
Pisani suggests residents follow helpful tips at the Team Water Smart website.
Farther south, volunteers who often find themselves rescuing salmon fry in the Cowichan River in the summer months say a crisis situation has prompted them into action much earlier.
"The water has not been this low this time of year in recorded memory," says Parker Jefferson of the Cowichan Lake and River Stewardship Society.
Society members have been collecting the fry from drying streams to relocate them to deeper, more secure waterways.
Jefferson fears at this rate, the Cowichan River could run dry by the end of July.
"We're doing the best we can to keep this river alive so we're keeping the pools attended, getting the fish out. But the problem is that we just don't have enough water in the lake this year," Jefferson said.