12 gifts of nature

Atlantic puffins (Photo by Bill Caulfeild-Browne)

Atlantic puffins (Photo by Bill Caulfeild-Browne)

Every year, the holidays rush by. Anticipation builds, the festive spirit fills the air, holiday jingles loop on. For some, the rush to fill stockings and pick out the perfect gift is both challenging and stressful, but it doesn’t have to...

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Something’s Fishy: Catching up on 57 years of conservation

Dr. J. Bruce Falls, Richard Pough, Aird Lewis and Dave Fowle, first exploratory meeting for the Nature Conservancy of Canada, 1961

Dr. J. Bruce Falls, Richard Pough, Aird Lewis and Dave Fowle, first exploratory meeting for the Nature Conservancy of Canada, 1961

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) got its start in the early 1960s with four naturalists who were inspired to protect the natural world around them. Based in Ontario, this plucky band of naturalists launched a program to take direct, private...

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The importance of wetlands

Sunset at Minesing Wetlands, ON (Photo by Ethan Meleg)

Sunset at Minesing Wetlands, ON (Photo by Ethan Meleg)

In the summer of 2019, I had the pleasure of working as a conservation technician for the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC). While I was working out of the Norfolk office in southwestern Ontario, I spent a lot of time in restored fields and...

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Twelve spooky facts about Canadian bats

Townsend's big-eared bat (Photo by Brock Fenton)

Townsend's big-eared bat (Photo by Brock Fenton)

There are 18 known bat species in Canada. Although they are subjected to a spooky stigma around Halloween, they’re nothing to be afraid of. Here are 12 things you didn’t know about these not-so-scary mammals: 1. The snooze...

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Get to know one of Canada’s rarest snakes

Desert nightsnake (Photo by W. Mason CC BY-NC)

Desert nightsnake (Photo by W. Mason CC BY-NC)

Working at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) has taught me many things, including the fact that many people are infatuated with snakes. Whether people are afraid of them, invested in protecting their habitats or enjoy learning about what...

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Don’t trust lady’s-slippers (if you’re a bee)

This honeybee was tricked into pollinating this yellow lady’s-slipper. (Photo by Steven Anderson/NCC staff)

This honeybee was tricked into pollinating this yellow lady’s-slipper. (Photo by Steven Anderson/NCC staff)

Before I began working at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC), I spent six years studying the pollination of two species of lady’s-slipper orchids in Manitoba and the northern U.S. While I no longer spend all of my time thinking about...

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Where the river stops: Why habitat connectivity is critical for healthy fish populations across Canada

Spawning Chinook salmon (Photo by Fish On in the Yukon)

Spawning Chinook salmon (Photo by Fish On in the Yukon)

Before you read any further, stop and think about a fish migrating up a river. Chances are that fish is a salmon and that river is in BC. There’s good reason that salmon in BC have come to symbolize fish migration. The return of millions of...

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Hummingbirds: The forgotten pollinator when it comes to pesticides

Female rufous hummingbird (Photo by Jennifer Kepler CC BY-NC)

Female rufous hummingbird (Photo by Jennifer Kepler CC BY-NC)

When life is leaping forth in its freshest tender green and shrubs are casting their best wine-rich blooms of colour, there comes a humming. Not just from the song of spring rising in the world, but from wing beats — 52 to 62 per...

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Making friends with the solitary bees

Blue orchard mason bee (Photo by Robert Engelhardt)

Blue orchard mason bee (Photo by Robert Engelhardt)

When you think of bees, your mind probably goes to honey, hives and stingers. But what if I told you that there was a species of bee, native to the Saskatchewan prairies, that didn’t make honey, live in a hive or (usually) sting? Mason bees...

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Monarch migration

Monarch (Photo by NCC)

Monarch (Photo by NCC)

Fall is fast approaching. As the days grow shorter and temperatures drop, it’s time for monarchs to migrate south for the winter. These iconic bright-orange butterflies will soon be replaced by pumpkins and turning leaves. Monarchs spend...

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