Sudbury lakes are becoming less acidic

Common loons moult their feathers, starting at the base of their bills, before autumn migration in September. (Photo by Robert Alvo)

Common loons moult their feathers, starting at the base of their bills, before autumn migration in September. (Photo by Robert Alvo)

In my July 5, 2018, blog, I summarized my findings of over 25 years of examining the effects of lake acidification on common loon breeding success in the Sudbury region of Ontario. Although Sudbury's lakes have improved after decades of sulphur...

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Santa's large helpers

Caribou on Darkwoods, British Columbia (Photo by Christian Schadendorf)

Caribou on Darkwoods, British Columbia (Photo by Christian Schadendorf)

"Now, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now, Prancer and Vixen! "On, Comet! On, Cupid! On, Dunder and Blixem!" Santa’s reindeer are kind of a big deal. They have important jobs, as they’re pretty much celebrities in the North Pole. Read on to find...

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Reigniting a love of insects

Monarch (Photo by NCC)

Monarch (Photo by NCC)

The love of insects can be a tough sell to many adults. Much like a fascination with dinosaurs, it seems that an interest in insects peaks during childhood and then declines for most people. Butterflies, however, are one of the few insects that...

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Close encounters of a furry kind

Plains bison (Photo by NCC)

Plains bison (Photo by NCC)

Confession time: I am not a cowboy. There, I said it! My Carhartts have a lot more house paint on them than cow manure. My farming background is in grains (I am a proud agro and I used to be able to unload on the fly, sort of like these guys), and...

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November roundup: Conservation and nature stories from around the world that caught our eye this month

Northern white rhino (Photo by Jana Ohrner CC-BY-NC)

Northern white rhino (Photo by Jana Ohrner CC-BY-NC)

Every day, countless inspiring and informative stories are published about conservation successes or discoveries in nature and wildlife around the world. Here are some that caught our attention in November 2018. Life’s library Scientists...

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Hibernation with a hiss

A drawing of a snake (Photo by Darwin Online)

A drawing of a snake (Photo by Darwin Online)

Snakes are such misunderstood creatures. Many people fear them, but that might be because they don’t know how awesome snakes are! Snakes are limbless reptiles with scaly skin. They are very diverse, with different sizes, colours and...

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Multi-talented organisms: How seaweeds can affect our daily lives

Dr. Sophie Steinhagen collecting seaweeds (Photo courtesy of Dr. Sophie Steinhagen)

Dr. Sophie Steinhagen collecting seaweeds (Photo courtesy of Dr. Sophie Steinhagen)

Seaweeds, a type of macro-algae (a group that includes benthic [attached to the bottom] marine algae that are typically visible to the naked eye), provide hope for a more sustainable future, through healthier food, renewable energy and fewer...

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If you’re Batman then I must be Robin, right?

Joe Poissant's (a.k.a. Batman's) office in the country (Photo by NCC)

Joe Poissant's (a.k.a. Batman's) office in the country (Photo by NCC)

I feel like there might be some real merit in an ecologist superhero movie. Hear me out before you rate me on Rotten Tomatoes. This summer I spent a couple of nights trying my best to help the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s (NCC’s)...

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You don't have to be a scientist

Evan Young kayaking (Photo by NCC)

Evan Young kayaking (Photo by NCC)

As an amateur naturalist, I’ve found it’s easy to learn new things; however, it’s getting much harder to retain everything I learn. Growing up on a farm in rural Nova Scotia, I’ve always had a passion for the outdoors,...

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Demystifying spooky species this Halloween

Black purse-web spider (Photo by Rob Craig, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry)

Black purse-web spider (Photo by Rob Craig, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry)

Why do some species spook us more than others? Some say it is an evolutionary adaptation, some say it is an irrational fear, while still others say that is because some (like spiders) are always shrouded in myths. If you’re not a fan of...

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