Have no fear: Rational thinking is here

Milk snake (Photo by Jenna Siu/NCC staff)

Milk snake (Photo by Jenna Siu/NCC staff)

I was recently hanging out with my four-year-old niece and talking about different animals. She asked me, “What’s your favourite animal?” I replied, “Butterflies and snakes.” At the word snakes, I could see her squirm...

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Paddling through the “Everglades of the North”

Kayaking through the canopy in the Minesing Wetlands, ON (Photo by NCC)

Kayaking through the canopy in the Minesing Wetlands, ON (Photo by NCC)

It’s a foggy spring morning, quiet and still, not a whisper of wind in the air, and you’re paddling through a forest of silver maple, hackberry and bur oak trees. The canopy above is perfectly reflected in the glass-like water, which...

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Backpack Essentials: Deep in the wilderness, it’s nice to have a best friend

Backpack Essentials (Image by NCC)

Backpack Essentials (Image by NCC)

This blog post is part of the Backpack Essentials series, a series that explores the items NCC staff carry with them when going outside. It is inspired by the quarterly Nature Conservancy of Canada Magazine and our Nature Destinations program. To...

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International Day of Biological Diversity: A thank you note to Algonquin Park

Joe Lake, Algonquin Provincial Park (Photo by Brett Hodnett/Wikimedia Commons)

Joe Lake, Algonquin Provincial Park (Photo by Brett Hodnett/Wikimedia Commons)

Three. That’s how many Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) supporters recently (within the span of a week) shared with me that their current passion for nature and support for our work at NCC was sparked by spending time in Algonquin Park...

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Success under pressure: Helping landowners succeed with stewardship in southwestern Ontario

Acadian flycatcher (Photo by Bill Hubick)

Acadian flycatcher (Photo by Bill Hubick)

The Carolinian ecoregion of Canada makes up one per cent of the country’s total land mass and is limited to southwestern Ontario. Many of the region’s 70 tree species — such as tuliptree, pawpaw and sycamore — are found...

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Buzzing down the house: An update

Bumble bee (Photo by Amanda Liczner)

Bumble bee (Photo by Amanda Liczner)

This is an update to a post I wrote last year. The data has now been analyzed, and the results are ready for sharing. We commonly hear that bees are in decline and that we need to save them because they are important pollinators of crops and...

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Best places to bird in Ontario: Pelee Island and NCC’s natural areas

The burrowing owl is the bird that really started it all for us on Pelee Island. On a whim back in April 2008, we decided to bird on the island, and, incredibly, found a burrowing owl. (Photo by Mike Burrell)

The burrowing owl is the bird that really started it all for us on Pelee Island. On a whim back in April 2008, we decided to bird on the island, and, incredibly, found a burrowing owl. (Photo by Mike Burrell)

We had an interesting first visit to Pelee Island back in September 2001, where we “dipped” (missed) a trio of wood storks that had been on the island the entire summer, only to have had them leave the evening before we managed to make...

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Beech leaf disease: A new problem for Ontario trees

Early-stage leaf striping (Photo by John Pogacnik, Ohio Department of Natural Resources)

Early-stage leaf striping (Photo by John Pogacnik, Ohio Department of Natural Resources)

Beech bark disease began ravaging beech trees in Ontario in the late 1990s, after spreading west from Atlantic Canada. But recently, a new beech disease has emerged in the province. Beech leaf disease was first detected in North America in 2012 in...

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Wetland contamination and turtle health

Snapping turtle (Photo by Pascale Bider)

Snapping turtle (Photo by Pascale Bider)

Between oozing mud, mosquitoes the size of golf balls and strange-smelling water, wetlands may not seem to you or me like an appealing place to live. But for most of Ontario’s eight species of turtles, wetlands are an essential...

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Driving Miss Hazel

Hazel Bird Nature Reserve, ON (Photo by NCC)

Hazel Bird Nature Reserve, ON (Photo by NCC)

Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) staff like to say that science drives our conservation work. This is true, but sometimes while following the science, we stumble into something unexpected and truly amazing. Let me explain. Back about 20 years...

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