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Magnificent bryozoan

A jelly-like mass submerged in the canal near our garden. (Photo by MaryLin Howard Photography)

A jelly-like mass submerged in the canal near our garden. (Photo by MaryLin Howard Photography)

It was early October in the beautiful little hamlet of Shrewsbury, Ontario. My husband and I were doing some autumn cleanup in our flower garden, under a large willow tree on the bank of a canal. We noticed that some branches had fallen into the...

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Something’s Fishy: Catching up on 57 years of conservation

Dr. J. Bruce Falls, Richard Pough, Aird Lewis and Dave Fowle, first exploratory meeting for the Nature Conservancy of Canada, 1961

Dr. J. Bruce Falls, Richard Pough, Aird Lewis and Dave Fowle, first exploratory meeting for the Nature Conservancy of Canada, 1961

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) got its start in the early 1960s with four naturalists who were inspired to protect the natural world around them. Based in Ontario, this plucky band of naturalists launched a program to take direct, private...

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Stop Carcasses! Safer roads for animals and people

A turtle on the roadside with a car speeding by it. (Photo by NCC)

A turtle on the roadside with a car speeding by it. (Photo by NCC)

Working in conservation sometimes means bringing harsh realities to light. As a communications assistant with the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s (NCC’s) Quebec Region, I promote projects aimed at preventing road kill. Up until...

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The magic of nature

Denise Harris with her granddaughter (Photo by NCC)

Denise Harris with her granddaughter (Photo by NCC)

When I first started going to my neighbourhood park, I often saw disturbing human behaviour; some from children as young as three. In the "School of Life," where my field-testing on educating others about our waterfowl neighbours initially failed,...

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I like to be outnumbered

Maia Herriot in the field (Photo by NCC)

Maia Herriot in the field (Photo by NCC)

In my last week at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) as the communications intern for the Saskatchewan Region, I found myself standing on a hill, in the rain, on one of our Qu’Appelle Valley properties. I was looking through my...

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The clock is counting down: It’s time to have a tick talk

Adult deer tick (Photo by Scott Bauer/Wikimedia Commons)

Adult deer tick (Photo by Scott Bauer/Wikimedia Commons)

Whenever I hike with my non-naturalist friends, I give them the usual safety spiel: wear long sleeves and long pants, stay hydrated, watch for poison ivy and nettles, and bring along some bug spray. But, as of late, I find myself adding a fifth...

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Get to know one of Canada’s rarest snakes

Desert nightsnake (Photo by W. Mason CC BY-NC)

Desert nightsnake (Photo by W. Mason CC BY-NC)

Working at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) has taught me many things, including the fact that many people are infatuated with snakes. Whether people are afraid of them, invested in protecting their habitats or enjoy learning about what...

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Don’t trust lady’s-slippers (if you’re a bee)

This honeybee was tricked into pollinating this yellow lady’s-slipper. (Photo by Steven Anderson/NCC staff)

This honeybee was tricked into pollinating this yellow lady’s-slipper. (Photo by Steven Anderson/NCC staff)

Before I began working at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC), I spent six years studying the pollination of two species of lady’s-slipper orchids in Manitoba and the northern U.S. While I no longer spend all of my time thinking about...

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Sex-changing species

Kobudai/Asian sheesphead wrasse (Photo by Zack CC BY-NC)

Kobudai/Asian sheesphead wrasse (Photo by Zack CC BY-NC)

I recently watched a fascinating nature documentary series called Blue Planet II and was blown away by the wildlife spectacles that I saw and learned about in the series. One scene that especially stood out to me featured a 10-year-old female...

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Camping in the tall grass prairie

Tall grass prairie, Manitoba (Photo by NCC)

Tall grass prairie, Manitoba (Photo by NCC)

This past summer, the tall grass prairie of Stuartburn, Manitoba, was filled with the sounds of footsteps and laughter. Stephanie Murray, a former communications and engagement intern with the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s (NCC’s)...

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