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)

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, there’s a good reason why...

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A walk in the woods: Nebo in the boreal forest region

Nebo, SK (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Remember that scene in Stand By Me, where our intrepid heroes set out on their journey towards adulthood along the railway track of life and chase a bunch of cows off the rail bed and into the pasture beside it? No? How about the scene where the...

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The perfection of the morning redux: Old Man on His Back Prairie and Heritage Conservation Area

Morning sun shines on the grassy plains at OMB (Photo by Gail F. Chin)

Getting up at 5 a.m. to catch the morning sun cast blinding rays across the grassy plains at Old Man on His Back (OMB), I stood in the receding darkness in awe of the sublime. There was no silence! The din of insects carried on. An occasional...

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Summer in photos

NCC volunteers and staff cap off the day with a silly jazz hands group photo. (Photo by NCC)

Having hosted 30 Conservation Volunteers (CV) events and worked with 489 volunteers so far this year, it’s been a whirlwind of a summer. And September has only just begun! The summer may have been a blur, but thankfully, we captured on...

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Tin cans, a Mormon cricket and a UFO landing pad: One perspective on the Conservation Volunteers weekend at Old Man on His Back

Tin cans capping fence posts (Photo by Bill Armstrong)

I understand there are likely to be a couple more Land Line blogs about the recent Conservation Volunteers (CV) weekend at the (inhale) Old Man On His Back Prairie Heritage and Conservation Area (OMB) (exhale), so let me give you my take on the...

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Life in freshwater country: How helping water helps Canada (Part Two)

Bow Lake, AB (Photo by Sarah Boon)

Bow Lake, AB (Photo by Sarah Boon)

In Part One of this blog I presented an overview of Canada's freshwater resources and the need to protect them for people and nature. Here I will further explain how today’s problems need new solutions. Over the last year the Nature...

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Life in freshwater country: How helping water helps Canada (Part One)

Elbow Lake, Frontenac Arch, ON (Photo by NCC)

Elbow Lake, Frontenac Arch, Ontario (Photo by NCC)

If you are Canadian, either by chance or by choice, you probably have a story about water. It might be learning to paddle a canoe, pulling your first fish from the water or standing on the dock on the May 24 weekend with friends, challenging each...

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The Migratory Bird Treaty turns 100!

Woman, wearing a large feathered hat and boa, posing for a portrait (Photo by John Oxley Library, Public Domain)

This year we mark the centennial of the convention between the United States and Great Britain (for Canada) for the protection of migratory birds — also called the Migratory Bird Treaty — that was signed on August 16, 1916. A century...

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O’Canada! Culture of the wilderness: A day at the NCC Nebo property

Overview of the Nebo property, SK (Photo by Gail F. Chin)

Nebo, some 70 kilometres due west of the city of Prince Albert, Saskatchewan is the largest and northernmost property recently acquired by the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC). This is an interesting acquisition, as it is located in the...

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Hittin' the marsh

My one educational breakthrough was to teach them to emulate my hayseed ways by chewing on a piece of grass before touring the property (Photo by NCC)

It wasn’t even really that hot. I think that’s the thing that got me. Warm? I guess…for early June. Sunny? Mostly, but there were clouds and a bit of a breeze, so even saying it was warm is pretty generous. And forget about a...

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