I am a place that you may not know

Common loon (Photo by slyquetzal, CC BY-NC 4.0)

Common loon (Photo by slyquetzal, CC BY-NC 4.0)

I am birds that sing and the promise of spring. I am morning mist on marshes, a smiling sun at noon, the first star awake and the cry of a loon. I am turning leaves that fall and rutting moose that call. I am the long winter that comes early and...

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Threats to birds, and how you can help birds in your own backyard

Prothonotary warbler (Photo by Bill Hubick)

Prothonotary warbler (Photo by Bill Hubick)

In spring, we welcome the return of migratory birds to Canada to breed. A few billion birds from over 400 species breed in Canada each year. Before we know it, young birds will be leaving their nests, awkwardly learning to navigate the world...

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My native species bring all the pollinators to the yard

Northern crescent butterfly on swamp milkweed flowers (Photo by Jaimee Morozoff/NCC staff)

Northern crescent butterfly on swamp milkweed flowers (Photo by Jaimee Morozoff/NCC staff)

Now that spring has finally made its way across Canada (in some places it was slower in arriving than others), gardening season is in full swing! With all of the choices present at our local nurseries and big box stores, it is easy to get carried...

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Nature in the...parking lot?

Monarch Butterfly on Joe Pye (Photo by NCC)

Monarch Butterfly on Joe Pye (Photo by NCC)

I work as a development officer at the Nature Conservancy of Canada and have lots of friends who are outdoorsy and also work in this field. This means that I am often swapping stories of cool wildlife sightings. The rare bird my co-worker spotted,...

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The pine needle game

Play a game of Guess Who? with pine needles from four species  (Painted by Mena Wallace)

Play a game of Guess Who? with pine needles from four species (Painted by Mena Wallace)

Trees are a wonderous thing. Most of the time we barely notice them amid the scurry of our busy days, but every now and then you encounter a showstopper. I’m always on the lookout for a new tree to discover because species identification is...

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Adventures in the night, continued!

The night sky over Rankin River in Saugeen Bruce Peninsula. (Photo by Esme Batten/NCC staff)

The night sky over Rankin River in Saugeen Bruce Peninsula. (Photo by Esme Batten/NCC staff)

I get it. It can be hard to look outside in the winter and think, “Wow, I want to go and explore!” When it is -20 C and the wind is blowing, it’s hard enough to get outside during the day, never mind at night. However, I...

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Adventures in the night: My foray into astrophotography

Located on Plymouth's doorstep, Dartmoor National Park is a vast moorland known for its forests, rivers, wetlands and tors (rock formations). This photo is of Great Staple Tor with me in the foreground. (Photo by Esme Batten/NCC staff)

Located on Plymouth's doorstep, Dartmoor National Park is a vast moorland known for its forests, rivers, wetlands and tors (rock formations). This photo is of Great Staple Tor with me in the foreground. (Photo by Esme Batten/NCC staff)

“Are we almost there?” I ask my new friend Matt as we wander along a sea cliff on the north coast of Cornwall, U.K., shivering, in search of our shooting location for the evening. Although by Canadian standards the evening was balmy at...

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Dangers of artificial light at night to birds

The view of downtown Toronto approaching nighttime (Photo by Roberto Nickson from Pexels)

The view of downtown Toronto approaching nighttime (Photo by Roberto Nickson from Pexels)

Since the discovery of fire, humankind has tried to push back the darkness of night, extending the total usable hours in a day. Light has been a beacon, warning ships of treacherous coastlines and guiding them to safe harbours. Symbolizing life...

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Big, bold and boreal: Once complete, this will be Canada’s largest private conservation project

Boreal Wildlands, ON (Photo by NCC)

Boreal Wildlands, ON (Photo by NCC)

Spring is unfurling across the country, and those who know me know I love my birds. Birdwatching is great in any season, but I start to get a specific set of goosebumps when I hear the first sounds of migratory birds returning from the south in...

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Connecting to conservation

Allery Safruk and Mena Wallace, volunteer conservation interns and CCC participants, conducting invasive species control. (Photo by NCC)

Allery Safruk and Mena Wallace, volunteer conservation interns and CCC participants, conducting invasive species control. (Photo by NCC)

Collaboration for conservation The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is one of many partnership organizations holding 12-week placements for a number of lucky Canadian Conservation Corps (CCC) participants — me included! The placement...

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