What’s the buzz on bees at the Cowichan Preserve?

Cowichan Garry Oak Preserve flowers, BC (Photo by Tim Ennis/NCC)

Cowichan Garry Oak Preserve flowers, BC (Photo by Tim Ennis/NCC)

You’ve probably seen it in the news: bees are in trouble. There has been a lot of press about managed honeybees that have been introduced to North America for pollination and honey. Unfortunately, we also know that many wild bees are also...

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Moths and butterflies: What we're doing to help these little-known pollinators

Sphinx moth (Photo © Manitoba Museum)

Sphinx moths overwinter as pupa underground. (Photo © Manitoba Museum)

Bees are well known for their ability to pollinate flowers but there are other pollinators out there, including moths and butterflies. Moths pollinate flowers both during the day and at night. This summer, Nature Conservancy (NCC) staff will be...

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What would insects think about #dressgate #thedress?

Bee on flower (Photo by NCC)

Bee on flower (Photo by NCC)

The #Dressgate colour craze is currently all over the online community and newspapers. For those who have yet caught on, there has been an eruption of arguments on social media over the true colours of a dress — blue and black, or white and...

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Pollinator edge effects on Manitoba's grasslands

A small andrenid bee sheltering in a wild strawberry flower (Photo by Marika Olynyk)

A small andrenid bee sheltering in a wild strawberry flower (Photo by Marika Olynyk)

Animal pollination is a key ecological process, ensuring the reproduction and genetic diversity of most flowering plants, and providing food for pollinators. In Manitoba, insects are the most important pollinators. Our short summers are busy as...

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Moths:Amazing, beautiful, important and in need of study

Wood nymph moth (Photo by NCC)

Wood nymph moth (Photo by NCC)

Moths are amazing creatures that are only beginning to receive attention from naturalists. Many people have difficulties determining the difference between moths and butterflies. They can be similar-looking, as they both have scales that cover...

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The eastern subterranean termite: An introduced species in Ontario

Eastern subterranean termite (Photo by United States Department of Agriculture, Wikimedia Commons)

Eastern subterranean termite (Photo by United States Department of Agriculture, Wikimedia Commons)

Most of us in Ontario, I think it is safe to say, don't give a moments thought to termites, or realize that they are found in this region. In fact you are unlikely to ever meet the acquaintance of one, unless your house unfortunately becomes...

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It's the great pumpkin pollinator! Meet the squash bee

Female squash bee on a male pumpkin flower (Photo by Margaret Chan)

Female squash bee covered in pollen on a male pumpkin flower (Photo by Margaret Chan)

At my house, Halloween is a frenzy of pumpkins — those lovely globes that throb with the vitality of summer. We carve them into frightening orange-skinned, ghoulish-grinned beasts set aglow by the light of beeswax candles. I fell in love...

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Where have all the pollinators gone?

Research site (Photo by Diana Robson)

Cold, cloudy weather at the preserves in September meant that most of the pollinators just stayed home. (Photo by Diana Robson)

After a summer filled with ticks, mosquitoes and biting flies, I was ready for a pest-free pollinator survey at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) properties near Riding Mountain National Park this September. Autumn field work can be quite...

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The search for an elusive species

Black purse-web spider (Photo by Rob Craig, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry)

Black purse-web spider (Photo by Rob Craig, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry)

The black purse-web spider is not well known in Ontario. The species has been found occasionally across Southern Ontario, from Windsor to Belleville, including a recent find in Rouge Park in 2012. Interestingly, it belongs to the group of...

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Butterfly moments

Poweshiek skipperling (Photo by NCC)

Poweshiek skipperling (Photo by NCC)

"Just living isn't enough," said the butterfly, "one must also have freedom, sunshine, and a little flower." ~ Hans Christian Anderson Sometimes a place speaks to you. You may not even consciously notice it until you find yourself thinking of...

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