The big picture

A fallen tree can be home to mushrooms (Photo by NCC)

A fallen tree can be home to mushrooms (Photo by NCC)

I have learned so much more about natural ecosystems during my recent participation in the Canadian Conservation Corps (CCC) program. Natural ecosystems are created by an intricate relationship between the land, the plants, the animals and all the...

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A McKenzie Towne Almanac

Inverness Pond, McKenzie Towne (Christine Beevis Trickett/NCC staff)

Inverness Pond, McKenzie Towne (Christine Beevis Trickett/NCC staff)

The slowing down over the past 10–11 months with the COVID-19 pandemic and its related restrictions has meant more time to be in one place and appreciate the nature around me. While where I live — McKenzie Towne, in southern Calgary...

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How tracking animals leaves a different imprint on winter

Tracks of a coyote walking - note the straight track pattern. (Photo by NCC)

Tracks of a coyote walking - note the straight track pattern. (Photo by NCC)

It isn’t a secret that most city dwellers have complicated relationships with winter (myself included). When the weather takes a turn for the worse, it seems to have a domino effect on urban centres, increasing traffic and slowing everything...

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Nature therapy (part five): Motivated by Nature

Winter smile (Photo by Amanda Cashin Photography)

Winter smile (Photo by Amanda Cashin Photography)

It’s no secret that this year has been, and still is, challenging. During the winter, it is important to think about what we can do to help combat the winter blues. Whether we are working from home and indoors more, and/or suffer from...

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What is a legacy?

Threshing machine, a modern version of one that was used on the family farm back in the day (Photo by Ben Franske)

Threshing machine, a modern version of one that was used on the family farm back in the day (Photo by Ben Franske)

It wasn’t until I became a grandparent that I started pondering the question, “What is my legacy?” Separating the wheat from the chaff took a great deal of time and thought. It was while reviewing my past experiences that led me...

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What does a conservation biologist do in the “other season?”

Is this what you think of when you hear conservation biology? ( Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Is this what you think of when you hear conservation biology? ( Photo by Mike Dembeck)

There is a seasonal nuance to being a conservation biologist. If you look at my job description optimistically, my job involves afternoons looking for spring ephemeral flowers, summers canoeing on lakes and early autumn mornings catching the last...

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How collaboration kept an invasive beetle at bay

Asian longhorned beetle with wing exposed under elytron (wing casing) (Photo by Pudding4brains, Wikimedia Commons)

Asian longhorned beetle with wing exposed under elytron (wing casing) (Photo by Pudding4brains, Wikimedia Commons)

What is black with white spots and shiny all over? It’s the invasive Asian longhorned beetle (ALB)! This beetle is well known for its striking appearance, piercing eyes and antennae that extend beyond the rear of its body. It has no natural...

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Nova Scotia through the seasons

Victoria Park, Truro (Photo by Brittany Foster)

Victoria Park, Truro (Photo by Brittany Foster)

Living on the southern coast of mainland Nova Scotia, I have the opportunity to experience each season in all of its natural glory. Winter, spring, summer and fall have their own unique sights, smells and sounds. They are marked distinctions in...

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How species survive winter: Hibernation

A big brown bat

A big brown bat "hanging out." Often when found outside, big brown bats sit in this position on the side of a building, tree or (ideally not) on the ground. (Photo by Sarah Ludlow/NCC)

Previously, I discussed how small songbirds, and black-capped chickadees in particular, survive winter on the Canadian Prairies. Now I will discuss another strategy that animals use to survive the long, cold winter months: hibernation. Hibernation...

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December roundup: Conservation and nature stories that caught our eye this month

Capuchin monkey (Photo by Steve Corey, CC-BY-NC-ND)

Capuchin monkey (Photo by Steve Corey, CC-BY-NC-ND)

Every day, countless inspiring and informative stories are published about conservation successes or discoveries in nature and wildlife around the world. Here are some that caught our attention in December 2020. Camera captures Costa Rican...

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