Observing the pollinators of the prairie

Prairie crocus finishes flowering in early May (Photo by Diana Robson)

Prairie crocus finishes flowering in early May (Photo by Diana Robson)

Summer is in full bloom at the Yellow Quill Prairie Preserve, and once again, I’m studying pollinators at this Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) property, just south of Canadian Forces Base Shilo in Manitoba. Last year I made the mistake of...

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I did not fall into a burning ring of fire

A black line is established before prescribed burn begins. (Photo by NCC)

A black line is established before prescribed burn begins. (Photo by NCC)

I was several hours into my first major, fully equipped prescribed fire when I promised myself I wouldn’t cry. I was tired, it was getting dark and, to be honest, I wasn’t really sure where I was; but the real reason I was trying not...

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Pricing the priceless: How the economics of natural capital can help us all better value nature

Walking through Emma Young forest, ON (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Walking through Emma Young forest, ON (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Putting a price tag on nature is challenging. Some people don’t believe it can be done. Some people hate the idea of it. Most will have no idea what it means. But there are new and emerging approaches to help us put a price on the services...

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Nature Conservancy of Canada: Canada’s Agriculture Day is a time to celebrate environmentally sustainable agriculture

On Canada’s Agriculture Day, I want to talk about environmentally sustainable agriculture. As a professional agrologist working for a conservation agency, my perspective on how the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) operates often includes...

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Out of sight, out of mind

Greater sage-grouse (Photo by Gordon Sherman © Audubon Canyon Ranch)

Greater sage-grouse (Photo by Gordon Sherman © Audubon Canyon Ranch)

Now and then, I look out my living room window and begin to search. I am not searching for anything in particular, it is simply by habit. I can spend 20, or even 30, minutes just gazing here and there at just about anything. Little brown birds...

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The silence of the hillsides

Fort Ellice, Riding Mountain (Photo by NCC)

Fort Ellice, Riding Mountain (Photo by NCC)

For the past six months, I’ve worked as an assistant conservation biologist with the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) in Riding Mountain Natural Area in western Manitoba. I found that a summer in the area challenged me to reconsider how I...

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Greenspace makes for great headspace

Hikers in Happy Valley Forest, ON (Photo by NCC)

Hikers in Happy Valley Forest, ON (Photo by NCC)

The natural world has always been my fall-back position. Whenever life got too busy, scary or stressful or even when it was at its most fulfilling, I seemed to want, in fact to need, to find some green space to process it all, for a while. As a...

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Discovering the natural wonders of Manitoba

Fort Ellice, Riding Mountain (Photo by NCC)

Fort Ellice, Riding Mountain (Photo by NCC)

I grew up in southwestern Manitoba, living only a few minutes from both the American and Saskatchewan borders, and I have remained in the province while completing my undergraduate and graduate degrees. In the past year, I spent a lot of time...

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Adapting to realities: From conservation science to sleeping outdoors

Evening sky at Old Man on His Back Ranch, SK (Photo by Branimir Gjetvaj)

Evening sky at Old Man on His Back Ranch, SK (Photo by Branimir Gjetvaj)

I was about a half hour out of Saskatoon when I realized I had forgotten to pack my tent. It was the middle of September and I was planning on camping at the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s (NCC’s) Old Man on His Back Prairie and...

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Why Canada’s prairies are the world’s most endangered ecosystem

Old Man on His Back rolling prairie, Saskatchewan (Photo by Branimir Gjetvaj)

Old Man on His Back rolling prairie, Saskatchewan (Photo by Branimir Gjetvaj)

Updated November 7, 2018 Ask any Canadian kid to name the world’s most endangered ecosystem, and chances are you’ll hear one of the following answers: 1) rainforests; 2) coral reefs; 3) leave me alone. Ignoring the last answer,...

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