Amateurs

Bunchberry Meadows Conservation Area, AB (Photo by Kyle Marquardt)

Bunchberry Meadows Conservation Area, AB (Photo by Kyle Marquardt)

Amateurs have been instrumental in the history of science. Amateurs are numerous in astronomy and continue to find asteroids on collision courses with Earth! Out there they have found comets and former planets, but amateurs have also surveyed...

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What's flapping around in two Christmas Bird Count circles? (Part Two)

Bob and Mike checking out a flock of sparrows and finches (Photo by Kristyn Ferguson)

Bob and Mike checking out a flock of sparrows and finches (Photo by Kristyn Ferguson)

A ways up Highway 400 and across the top of Lake Simcoe from the Richmond Hill count circle (read about it in Part One), the Carden Alvar Christmas Bird Count took place on Saturday, January 2. It was a cold and dark morning when I left my house...

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What’s flapping around in two Christmas Bird Count circles? (Part One)

Dark-eyed junco (Photo by Bill Hubick)

Dark-eyed junco (Photo by Bill Hubick)

This is Part One of a two-part series on Christmas Bird Counts that took place this winter. The Christmas Bird Count is North America’s longest running citizen science project since 1900. Counts are carried out within a 24-kilometre...

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Four ways I’m making 2016 a year for nature

American tree sparrow (Photo by NCC)

American tree sparrow (Photo by NCC)

Ah, January! Time for a new year, a fresh start and a list of resolutions to be forgotten by February. Not so in 2016! This year, I’ve decided on a resolution that will not only be beneficial for my physical and mental well-being, but also...

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You too can be a citizen scientist! Join a Christmas Bird Count this year

Volunteers with binoculars at Codroy Valley Fall waterfowl Survey, NL (photo by NCC)

Volunteers with binoculars at Codroy Valley Fall waterfowl Survey, NL (photo by NCC)

Citizen science monitoring is an unspeakably important part of conservation, and I would encourage anyone who hasn’t tried it out yet to get involved. Christmas Bird Counts in particular are a great excuse to catch some sunshine and exercise...

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Cave diving in the Ottawa River, Canada

Dressed and ready to enter the water - note the yellow loggers on my right. (Photo by Cheryl Buzzacott)

Dressed and ready to enter the water - note the yellow loggers on my right. (Photo by Cheryl Buzzacott)

Before coming to Canada I contacted renowned Canadian cave diver David Sawatzky, whom I knew had mapped these caves in the 1990s before moving to Nova Scotia. David kindly sent me his detailed map and some background information, including that...

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Jasmine's day at the Carden Alvar Butterfly Count

Jasmine at the Carden Alvar Butterfly Count. (Photo by Mary Kennard)

Jasmine at the Carden Alvar Butterfly Count. (Photo by Mary Kennard)

My name is Jasmine and this summer I went to the Carden Alvar Annual Butterfly Count in Kirkfield, Ontario. I counted butterflies with my mom and Aunty Mary. I caught an eastern comma butterfly in my net. I caught three butterflies, my mom and...

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Share your love of nature with your love, in nature

A pair of cedar waxwings (Photo by Brendan Toews)

A pair of cedar waxwings (Photo by Brendan Toews)

Behold! The year’s (supposedly) most romantic day is coming up! Whether you see it as a cash grab for makers of V-Day buys or a necessary observance, it’s easy to get swept up in the fuss. But of all the roses, chocolates and candle...

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Doing Science that Matters: Engaging with Communities in Collaborative Scientific Research

University of Victoria student Megan Adams monitoring hair snags near Wuikinuxv Village, BC (Photo by ACS lab)

University of Victoria student Megan Adams monitoring hair snags near Wuikinuxv Village, BC (Photo by ACS lab)

I should have known I would become an ecologist. As a child, I always seemed to catch a salamander while waiting for the school bus, or bring home precious flowers to press through the seasons. I could stare from the bus window out into the...

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The Ontario BioBlitz Program

Dave Ireland (Photo by Tallie Garey)

Dave Ireland (Photo by Tallie Garey)

A bioblitz is a biodiversity snapshot: an intensive survey of all living things in a given area within a set time, usually within the span of 24 hours. Biologist E.O. Wilson helped make the concept mainstream in 1999 when he suggested that citizen...

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