On the First Day of Christmas
Forget electronics. How about a nice piece of Canadian habitat?
Winnipeg, MB -- Want to make your Christmas a truly green one - the kind that has nothing to do with the lack of snow? Or are you looking for a Christmas gift for the nature lover on your list who has everything? If so, the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) in Manitoba has a suggestion.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada has launched its 20th annual charitable gift-giving program, Gifts of Canadian Nature. It provides an opportunity for people to sustain wild areas in Manitoba and across Canada for some of the most threatened habitat. The program is practical, especially for outdoor enthusiasts and people who are difficult to buy for.
Manitobans are being urged to give a present that means more this holiday.
The Nature Conservancy of Canada offers gifts with a purpose. Gifts range from $40 to $400. Each one is accompanied by a certificate that can be personalized for the recipient from President and CEO John Lounds and a 2015 Nature Conservancy of Canada calendar, featuring stunning scenes of conserved lands from across the country. A charitable tax receipt will be made available to each of the givers.
- Short-eared Owl Habitat: Found throughout Canada, this medium-sized owl has distinctive tufts of feathers that resemble ears. Currently a species of special concerns, its population has declined 23% in the last decade due to habitat loss and degradation.
- Gray Fox Habitat: The only confirmed breeding site of these elusive gray foxes in Canada has been recorded on Pelee Island in Ontario. There is estimated to be between 12 to 15 pairs. The gray fox's long, curved claws and flexible wrist joints make them the only canine in the western hemisphere that commonly climb trees.
- Canada Lynx Habitat: Distinguished by their long ear tufts and black-tipped tail, lynx are often mistaken for their more numerous cousins, the bobcat. These feline predators use their large, well-furred paws to move easily over deep snow.
- Grizzly Bear Habitat: Iconic of Canada's wilderness, the grizzly bear is primarily a solitary animal, needing vast expanses of undisturbed habitat. Today the species occupies less than half of its historical North American range and is threatened by habitat loss and degradation.
- Moose Habitat: The largest member of the deer family, with long and gangly legs, moose are surprisingly fast and agile, moving through bogs, forests and deep snow with ease. From the Chignecto Isthmus land bring in Nova Scotia, where the species is endangered to British Columbia's Flathead River Valley, NCC is protecting critical habitat for moose and other common and at-risk species.
Eighty-three percent of the money raised by the conservancy goes directly to on-the-ground conservation work protecting the country's natural spaces and some species at risk. The Nature Conservancy of Canada preserves land in perpetuity, so a gift literally lasts forever.
Anyone interested in purchasing a gift of nature can do it online on the NCC website (www.giftsofnature.ca) or by calling toll-free 1-800-465-8005.
"This is a practical way to give a symbolic gift that lasts forever. The rush to find the perfect gift can be frustrating for many shoppers. Many people have family members who love nature or relatives and friends who live long distances away and sending gifts can be a challenge," said Kevin Teneycke, Senior Director of Conservation for the Nature Conservancy of Canada in Manitoba. The NCC Gifts of Canadian Nature is a meaningful way people can make a difference, conserve the beautiful wilderness in this province, save time and resources, avoid the traffic jams in the mall and give gifts that are unique and memorable."
The Nature Conservancy of Canada is the nation's leading land conservation organization, working to protect our most important natural areas and the species they sustain. Since 1962, NCC and its partners have helped to protect more than 2.7 million acres (over 1 million hectares), coast to coast. In Manitoba, we have conserved almost 60,000 acres (24,300 hectares).
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