Reflections, roundtables and royalty: Thoughts from attending the IUCN Global Youth Summit

A group photo of one session during the IUCN Youth Summit

A group photo of one session during the IUCN Youth Summit

There are not many reasons I will willingly get out of bed at 5:30 a.m., but the opportunity to make a real difference in the world is one of them. Recently, I gathered with 13,000 fellow young people from across the globe at the International...

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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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Blanding’s turtle: A lesson about life in the slow lane

Blanding's turtle at Emma Young Property, Frontenac Arch, ON (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Blanding's turtle at Emma Young Property, Frontenac Arch, ON (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

I think many of us need a reminder to slow down. With a ground speed maxing out at only a few kilometres per hour, the only option for a Blanding’s turtle is slow. Although it takes them a long time to travel throughout their extensive home...

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So you’ve acquired a property. Now what? (part two)

Invasive dog-strangling vine (Photo by NCC)

Invasive dog-strangling vine (Photo by NCC)

In my previous blog, I defined the term baseline inventory, described the behind-the-scenes planning stages, and laid out how we classify vegetation communities on the ground. Read on to find out what other important data we collect in the field,...

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So you’ve acquired a property. Now what? (part one)

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)

New things are exciting. In my first few years as the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s coordinator, conservation biology for eastern Ontario, I couldn’t figure out why my favourite property kept changing. At first, it was the Emma Young...

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Smile for the camera

Deer caught on trail cam (Photo by NCC)

Deer caught on trail cam (Photo by NCC)

We use a lot of intricate technology at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC). When I’m out surveying an ecosystem in eastern Ontario, radio waves are bouncing between satellites in the sky and a receiver in my phone, to precisely locate...

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First snow at Gillies Grove

Newly planted eastern white pine (Photo by NCC)

Newly planted eastern white pine (Photo by NCC)

There is something magical about the first snowfall of the year. As the coordinator of conservation biology for eastern Ontario with the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC), I’m lucky that I get to experience all of our beautiful properties...

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Conservation collaboration: How sharing knowledge is shaping the next generation of environmental professionals

Bell at Elbow Lake (Photo by Charles T. Low Photography)

Bell at Elbow Lake (Photo by Charles T. Low Photography)

Nature doesn’t work in isolation. Trying to undertake effective conservation science programs without the support of partners would be impossible; the scope is simply too large. Not everyone can be an expert in everything, but if you draw...

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Invasive Species Olympics

Phragmites javelin (Photo by NCC)

Phragmites javelin (Photo by NCC)

The Olympic Games: the spectacle of international competition, where every four years, thousands of athletes from over 200 countries compete in the pinnacle of their sport. Inspired by the ancient Olympic Games, first held in Olympia, Greece, in...

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Volunteering abroad for nature

Clearing reed bed vegetation (Photo courtesy of Megan Quinn/NCC staff)

Clearing reed bed vegetation (Photo courtesy of Megan Quinn/NCC staff)

I don’t vacation very well. The problem with loving my job as a conservation biologist is that I have a hard time taking a holiday (and even when I do, I usually keep an eye on my work email inbox). So when I had the volunteer opportunity to...

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