Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary executive director Kathleen Burton is pledging to eat a mealworm for every $500 donation to the sanctuary. (Photo submitted)

Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary executive director Kathleen Burton is pledging to eat a mealworm for every $500 donation to the sanctuary. (Photo submitted)

Director pledges to eat a worm for donation to Saanich sanctuary

$500 donation to Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary will see Kathleen Burton chow down on mealworms Oct. 29

Kathleen Burton is ready to put her mouth where the money is.

The Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary executive director is pledging to eat a live mealworm for each $500 donation received before Oct. 27, although Burton’s appetite can only manage a maximum of 10 mealworms.

The donations will go towards the Give-a-$heet campaign to restore the floating boardwalk at Swan Lake.

“When the program staff first asked me if I would be willing to do this, I thought they were kidding,” said Burton. “No such luck as I soon realized they were quite serious. My first reaction was that of no way. Then I thought about it and decided if it could help support our fundraising efforts, why not. How bad could it be?”

Burton wasn’t up to adding flies to her meal, but is willing to consider sitting down to a full mealworm deal prepared by one of Victoria’s more adventurous chefs should a whopper of a donation come in.

You can watch Burton chow down on her wriggling meal during Swan Lake’s Gross-ology special event Oct. 29 from noon to 3 p.m. The event will explore owl pellets, slime, pond scum, poop, snakes and spiders, with Burton sitting down to lunch at 1:30 p.m.

“Feeding bugs as a meal at the sanctuary is an everyday occurrence”, said Coral Forbes, program naturalist, “Feeding them to our fearless leader, and I do mean fearless because there is no way I would eat them, on the other hand, now that does not happen every day.”

You can make a donation by calling 250-479-0211. For more information about the Give-a-$heet fundraising campaign, visit http://www.swanlake.bc.ca/capital-project.php.