What's in a salt marsh?

Wilson Lake and Lobster Bay, NS (Photo by Anthony Crawford)

Wilson Lake and Lobster Bay, NS (Photo by Anthony Crawford)

My field work for the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) often takes me through a number of different habitats, including salt marshes. Some are big, some are small, most are just right. One of these salt marshes is located in Yarmouth County,...

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Labrador tea, growing wild in the Big Land

Not much colour in the Labrador tea, but amazing flavour. (Photo by Paul Smith/ Special to The Telegram)

Not much colour in the Labrador tea, but amazing flavour. (Photo by Paul Smith/ Special to The Telegram)

I returned yesterday from Labrador, the Big Land, so vast and magnificent, with waterways that may never have floated a trout fly. There are not many places like Labrador left on our planet. We need to stay on our toes to protect it, us folks who...

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What's a weed?

Orange hawkweed (Photo by Kyle Meller/ NCC)

Orange hawkweed (Photo by Kyle Meller/ NCC)

In the world of conservation, a weed is thought of as any plant growing where it should not be, otherwise known as a non-native, or invasive, plant. Many plants can fit the description of a weed, from the nuisance dandelion to the native stinging...

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Something pumpkiny this way comes

Pumpkins (Photo by Nino Barbieri, Wikimedia Commons)

Pumpkins (Photo by Nino Barbieri, Wikimedia Commons)

It’s that time of year when we experience fall everywhere we go: brisk air, turned leaves, harvest displays, the donning of warmer apparel and more. This festive atmosphere becomes even more pronounced with the coming of Thanksgiving, and no...

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Why forests matter to me: Quotes from staff and supporters

Ogilvie sunset on forest, BC (Photo by NCC)

Ogilvie sunset on forest, BC (Photo by NCC)

Across the country, countless Canadians have been celebrating trees and forests last week as well as welcoming the arrival of fall. Although National Forest Week is behind us, there are good reasons to continue appreciating our forests and trees!...

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Grandparents in the natural world

Old-growth forest (Photo by NCC)

Old-growth forest (Photo by NCC)

I often find similarity in the structure of human society and the ecosystems in nature. Reflecting on how our community is comprised of people from all walks and stages of life, I can’t help but think the same about forests. As Grandparents...

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What's to like about lichen?

Reindeer lichen. (Photo by Mac Pitcher)

Reindeer lichen. (Photo by Mac Pitcher)

The clean air, cool foggy climate and contiguous old-growth forests of the Island of Newfoundland are an ideal formula for some very rare lichens. These species include boreal felt lichen, vole ears lichen and blue felt lichen. These lichens rely...

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Butterfly metamorphosis

Mating monarch butterflies, Butterfly Garden at Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) Tampa, Florida (Photo by Joyce Graham Fogwill)

Mating monarch butterflies, Butterfly Garden at Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) Tampa, Florida (Photo by Joyce Graham Fogwill)

A few summers ago I watched and photographed the metamorphosis of a butterfly (we weren't sure if the species is a green comma or question mark) at Cape Broyle, Newfoundland. During my visit, I became friends with my seven-year-old neighbour, M.,...

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Pollination deception: Manitoba’s lady’s slipper orchids

Small white lady's-slipper (Photo by Melissa Grantham)

Small white lady's-slipper (Photo by Melissa Grantham)

In Manitoba we have several species of lady’s slipper orchids, but the two I am most interested in, and have researched, are the yellow lady’s slipper (Cypripedium parviflorum) and the provincially endangered small white lady’s...

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Flowers of the Happy Valley Forest

One of the most beautiful of Happy Valley blooms is the fringed gentian flower. (Photo by Dr. Henry Barnett)

One of the most beautiful of Happy Valley blooms is the fringed gentian flower. (Photo by Dr. Henry Barnett)

The trees, flowers, ferns, birds and other animals of the Happy Valley Forest have been observed and catalogued over the past 60 years - altogether 200 species of plants have been identified growing on the floor of this forest located on the...

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