My southern beauty

A tuliptree in fall (Photo by Bernt Solymar)

Fall Tulip Tree (Photo by Bernt Solymar)

As I sat on the hillside staring out at hundreds of lilacs, I couldn’t help but notice the giant trees shading out large patches of land. I’d never seen such a large tree in southern Ontario before, and I was fascinated. I had to know...

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Chasing butterflies on the Rice Lake Plains

Catching butterflies on the Rice Lake Plains, ON (Photo by NCC)

A hike through the tall grass prairie and black oak savannah habitats of the Rice Lake Plains in Ontario may lead to discovering a vibrant, quiet and critical player in grassland conservation: butterflies! The surprisingly adrenaline-filled...

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Snapping up turtle eggs

Snapping turtle eggs were packed in damp sand for transport. (Photo by David Beevis)

Turtle populations face a number of threats, including loss of habitat and being hit while crossing roads. Recently, turtle populations in a local lake near where we live in Port Hope, Ontario, was exposed to a combination of factors threatening...

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The truth about ticks

Adult deer tick (Photo by Scott Bauer/Wikimedia Commons)

Adult deer tick (Photo by Scott Bauer/Wikimedia Commons)

Ticks seem to be everywhere these days. They’re on the news, on your social media feed and maybe even on your skin. People, especially those in southern Canada, are dealing with blacklegged ticks (also called deer ticks) with increasing...

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Hope, the gray ratsnake

Hope, the gray ratsnake (Photo by NCC)

This summer, I had the opportunity to go out with Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) field staff and reptile biologists from partner organizations to track a gray ratsnake dotingly named Hope, to which we'd previously attached a radio tracking...

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Join the invasion at Hazel Bird

Hazel Bird Nature Reserve, ON (Photo by NCC)

Hazel Bird Nature Reserve, ON (Photo by NCC)

When visiting the Nature Conservancy of Canada's (NCC's) Hazel Bird Nature Reserve in Ontario, you are greeted by a stunning grassland prairie with strong, looming oaks scattered delicately within the fields. You see the occasional shift of the...

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Rescuing roadside reptiles

Snapping turtle crossing the road, ON (Photo by NCC)

It was a warm, late-June evening, while driving on a backroad near my home in Guelph, Ontario, when I saw a familiar sight up ahead: a car pulled off to the side of the road, at least one human standing on the road, looking concerned, and the dome...

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Listening to the answers hidden in frog calls

Western chorus frog (Photo by Ryan Bolton)

Taking the time and effort to listen is essential to fully experiencing the outdoors. As a biologist, I am always keeping an eye and ear out for anything out of the ordinary, such as a rare frog, plant or bird species I’ve been hoping to...

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Experimenting with native species in small spaces

Honeybee on butterflyweed (Photo by NCC)

Earlier this summer, a group of Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) Leaders in Conservation visited St. Williams Nursery & Ecology Centre in Norfolk County, Ontario, for a tour of the nursery's impressive facility. With several years of...

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A chance meeting with an iconic Canadian mammal

Moose and her calf (Photo courtesy of Wild for Wildlife and Nature)

Moose and her calf (Photo courtesy of Wild for Wildlife and Nature)

Moose are an iconic part of Canada's wildlife. Growing up to six and a half feet tall at their shoulders and weighing up to 1,400 pounds, they are the largest species of deer in the world and one of the largest land mammals in Canada.Crossing...

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