A new hope for nature: Was 2015 a turning point for conservation?

Bayers Island in Musquodoboit Harbour, Nova Scotia (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Bayers Island in Musquodoboit Harbour, Nova Scotia (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

No one was expecting 2015 to be a special year for nature conservation. As we started the year, it seemed Canadians were mostly focused on the economy, security and health care. Yet when we reflect on the year that was, it’s clear the...

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Deck the halls...With invasive species?

Conservation Volunteers at the Deck the Halls event (Photo by Nick Tardiff)

Conservation Volunteers at the Deck the Halls event (Photo by Nick Tardiff)

As typical Canadian Decembers go, this wasn’t one of them. The landscape at the Nature Conservancy of Canada's Rice Lake Plains property was shrouded in fog, without a snowflake in sight. The volunteers’ task for the day was to remove...

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Memorable 2015 fieldwork moments

Tall grass prairie in NCC's Interlake Natural Area. (Photo by Cary Hamel/NCC)

Tall grass prairie in NCC's Interlake Natural Area. (Photo by Cary Hamel/NCC)

I asked the Manitoba Region’s talented group of field biologists, “What was your most inspiring or challenging fieldwork moment of this past summer?” Here are some of the highlights of last year's field season in...

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The Traills at Rice Lake

A view of the former home of Canadian author Catharine Parr Traill taken on Friday, September 19, 2014 on Smith Rd. in Lakefield. (Photo by Clifford Skarstedt/Peterborough Examiner/QMI Agency)

A view of the former home of Canadian author Catharine Parr Traill taken on Friday, September 19, 2014 on Smith Rd. in Lakefield. (Photo by Clifford Skarstedt/Peterborough Examiner/QMI Agency)

Ontarians usually associate Catharine Parr Traill with her book, The Backwoods of Canada. Those backwoods were located near Lakefield where she and her husband Thomas first pioneered on land just to the south of what is now Lakefield College...

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Discovery of the yellow pimpernel

Prescribed burns on the Hazel Bird Nature Reserve are being used to restore native oak savannah and tall grass prairie. (Photo by NCC)

Prescribed burns on the Hazel Bird Nature Reserve are being used to restore native oak savannah and tall grass prairie. (Photo by NCC)

Prescribed burns are an integral part of the restoration plan for oak savannah on the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s (NCC’s) Hazel Bird Nature Reserve. As part of the burning process, NCC staff set up plots to monitor short and...

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Fescue findings

A bumblebee on field locoweed. (Photo by Diana Bizecki Robson)

A bumblebee on field locoweed. (Photo by Diana Bizecki Robson)

As I near the end of my two years of pollinator research in the fescue prairie, I’ve been wondering what it all means. In particular I’ve been thinking about how the pollinator communities in fescue prairies are different than in the...

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Searching for skipperlings

Poweshiek skipperling in Petri dish. (Photo by Monica Reed)

Poweshiek skipperling in Petri dish. (Photo by Monica Reed)

It started with a lesson on the swoop and the drop net – methods that I would soon use while searching for the elusive Poweshiek skipperling butterfly. If captured, a careful transfer from net to a Petri dish allows for the butterfly to be...

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My favourite day in the field

Winter field trip, Elk Glen, MB (Photo by NCC)

Winter field trip, Elk Glen, MB (Photo by NCC)

As a biologist with the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) in Manitoba my field work is typically over once there is snow on the ground and ice on the ponds. Most of the time things need to be green or moving to do my work. However my last day in...

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It takes an (effectively communicating) village: The importance of information exchange between researchers and conservation practitioners

Tall grass prairie, Manitoba (Photo by NCC)

Tall Grass Prairie, Manitoba (Photo by NCC)

As a general rule, tall grass prairie researchers and conservation practitioners are a fairly lively bunch. They’re very passionate and not shy to share their perspectives on how, why and what conservation actions should occur. They...

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