My Pike Lake Bioblitz

Caterpillar (Photo by Shirley Humphries)

Caterpillar (Photo by Shirley Humphries)

A Nature Conservancy Canada (NCC) email popped up: "Big Backyard BioBlitz,” September 24 to 30, 2020! That sounded both appealing and doable without the risk of COVID-19 exposure. I would go to Pike Lake Provincial Park, where there are a...

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Lovebirds: The day I broke a turkey's heart

Wild male turkey (Photo by Wayne Dumbleton, CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0)

Wild male turkey (Photo by Wayne Dumbleton, CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0)

One of my favourite field work stories comes from my very first field season. I’ll be the first to admit that I had no idea what I was doing back then. I couldn’t identify most plants, was slightly scared (ok, terrified) of dragonflies...

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Pushing petals: Exploring Canadian botanical art

Illustration by Raymond Nakamura

Illustration by Raymond Nakamura

Summer has turned to fall, as the pandemic blurs the days. If you are able, please stay at home. But remember that you can still go outside and enjoy some nature, while maintaining a safe distance from others. Plants can provide a nature-based...

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Invasive, shrimp-sucking parasite continues northward Pacific expansion

The cough drop-sized parasite Griffen's isopod, native to Asia and Russia, has decimated mud shrimp populations along the West Coast. The parasite on the right is a female with the much smaller male attached. (Florida Museum photo by Amanda Bemis and Gustav Paulay)

The cough drop-sized parasite Griffen's isopod, native to Asia and Russia, has decimated mud shrimp populations along the West Coast. The parasite on the right is a female with the much smaller male attached. (Florida Museum photo by Amanda Bemis and Gustav Paulay)

By Josh Silberg and Natalie van Hoose Researchers have identified an invasive, blood-sucking parasite on mud shrimp in the waters of British Columbia’s Calvert Island. The discovery represents the northernmost record of the parasite on the...

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Tackling invasive European common reed

Me on a six-foot ladder amidst European common reed, to illustrate its height and density. (Photo by Courtney Robichaud)

Me on a six-foot ladder amidst European common reed, to illustrate its height and density. (Photo by Courtney Robichaud)

The highs and lows of monitoring the large-scale suppression of Phragmites australis spp. australis My field crew and I are covered in scratches. I’m a PhD student studying the recovery of native vegetation after invasive species control,...

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Connection and conservation during COVID-19

Exploring Burntcoat Head Park in Noel, Nova Scotia. (Photo by Kyle Erickson)

Exploring Burntcoat Head Park in Noel, Nova Scotia. (Photo by Kyle Erickson)

A year ago, my husband and I sold our house, packed up everything we owned — including two cats — and relocated from Edmonton to Halifax. Between new jobs, a new home and a new city, we didn’t have a lot of time to get involved...

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Murder hornets: What’s all the buzz about?

Asian giant hornets have orange-yellow heads and alternating bands of black, orange and yellow. (Photo by Yasunori Koide, Wikimedia Commons)

Asian giant hornets have orange-yellow heads and alternating bands of black, orange and yellow. (Photo by Yasunori Koide, Wikimedia Commons)

If you’ve been following the news this summer, you’re sure to have seen mention of murder hornets. After isolated discoveries of this invasive species in British Columbia and Washington state, news about the Asian giant hornet has...

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The Green World Hypothesis

Sea star (Photo by Samantha Ceci)

Sea star (Photo by Samantha Ceci)

Why is the planet filled with the colour green? What if I told you that the answer to this question originates from an experiment conducted using starfish? In 1963, professor Robert Paine stood on the shore of the Makah Bay in Washington state....

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How spending time in nature benefits your baby’s gut health

Sleeping infant (Photo by Daisy Laparra from Pexels)

Sleeping infant (Photo by Daisy Laparra from Pexels)

Being close to nature has motivated my life choices — where I live and how I spend my free time. In these times of COVID-19, where I work is now where I live, and I am lucky to live on a ravine in one of Edmonton’s natural areas, as...

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Exploring the Fraser River Estuary

Low tide at Swishwash Island, BC. (Photo by Fernando Lessa)

Low tide at Swishwash Island, BC. (Photo by Fernando Lessa)

The Fraser River is one of the most important rivers in Canada. Its waters, running for almost 1,400 kilometres before reaching the Pacific Ocean, are a major salmon waterway that is used by all five species of Pacific salmon and salmonids to...

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