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In nature, the ordinary can be awe-inspiring

NCC's Danielle Horne with dogwood (NCC photo)

NCC's Danielle Horne with dogwood (NCC photo)

My friends are good natured about going hiking with me. Those who aren’t naturalists know that it can often be slow. I find that there are so many interesting species out there, and sometimes the most beautiful sights can be found in the...

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Hugging trees

Anwar Knight and I hugging a black oak tree in High Park.  (Photo courtesy of Anwar Knight)

Anwar Knight and I hugging a black oak tree in High Park. (Photo courtesy of Anwar Knight)

I’m walking along a well-beaten dirt path in a favourite forest. The brilliant early fall sunshine streams through the leaves, which are gradually dimming from their vibrant summer green to hues of yellow, gold and the first tinges of red. A...

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The importance of wetlands

Sunset at Minesing Wetlands, ON (Photo by Ethan Meleg)

Sunset at Minesing Wetlands, ON (Photo by Ethan Meleg)

In the summer of 2019, I had the pleasure of working as a conservation technician for the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC). While I was working out of the Norfolk office in southwestern Ontario, I spent a lot of time in restored fields and...

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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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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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The birds and the beans

October 1 marks International Coffee Day (Photo from Creative Commons)

October 1 marks International Coffee Day (Photo from Creative Commons)

October 1 marks International Coffee Day, a day that celebrates and recognizes the millions of people across the globe who work hard to create and serve the warm, blissful beverage that we all know and love — especially in the morning. From...

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Lasagna garden

My dog, Kahlua, in her new backyard (Photo by Carys Richards/NCC staff)

My dog, Kahlua, in her new backyard (Photo by Carys Richards/NCC staff)

This summer I purchased a house, and alongside the responsibility of being a first-time home owner came the excitement of having my own yard to create a garden in. When I took possession of the house, the backyard looked a lot like this: flat and...

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Canada’s other rainforest

Acadian forest, Chignecto Isthmus, NS (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Acadian forest, Chignecto Isthmus, NS (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

The word “rainforest” evokes vivid images of a rich natural world. Many people think of the lush, misty jungles of the Amazon or Congo with thick vegetation. If you live in Canada, you might think about BC’s temperate...

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Hummingbirds: The forgotten pollinator when it comes to pesticides

Female rufous hummingbird (Photo by Jennifer Kepler CC BY-NC)

Female rufous hummingbird (Photo by Jennifer Kepler CC BY-NC)

When life is leaping forth in its freshest tender green and shrubs are casting their best wine-rich blooms of colour, there comes a humming. Not just from the song of spring rising in the world, but from wing beats — 52 to 62 per...

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Grandfather nature

My grandfather and I on a sailboat at the 2013 Hunter Family Reunion at Inver Huron Beach, ON (Photo courtesy of Adam Hunter/NCC staff)

My grandfather and I on a sailboat at the 2013 Hunter Family Reunion at Inver Huron Beach, ON (Photo courtesy of Adam Hunter/NCC staff)

I partly owe my love of nature to my grandfather. He likely developed his own fascination with nature from growing up on a farm in the historic Meadowvale Village in Mississauga, Ontario. When I was three years old, my grandfather moved into a...

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