From fear to awe: Spooky finds in nature

Fly agaric mushroom (Photo by emmaverson, CC BY-NC 4.0)

Fly agaric mushroom (Photo by emmaverson, CC BY-NC 4.0)

If you ask me what’s the scariest thing that happened in 2020, I’d say COVID-19. It forced many of us to re-examine our lives and even our relationship with nature. While I’ve often described nature as beautiful, fascinating and...

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Going batty in BC

Early morning scene of a small town in Transylvania, Romania, while volunteering with Operation Wallacea, Romania chapter. (Photo by Katie Bell)

Early morning scene of a small town in Transylvania, Romania, while volunteering with Operation Wallacea, Romania chapter. (Photo by Katie Bell)

The moon is full and bright, with fog settled in the valley, making for an eerie view. It is early morning, just before sunrise. I am with a group of volunteers and one biologist. We are on our way back to camp after a two-hour walk around a small...

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Coasting along Canada’s habitats

Musquash Estuary, NB (Photo by NCC)

Musquash Estuary, NB (Photo by NCC)

Canada is a nation bordered by three oceans: Pacific, Arctic and Atlantic. In many ways, the habitats, local culture and economies are shaped by them. Often when those of us who don’t live near the shoreline think of oceans, we picture a...

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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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A throwback to working in Backus Woods

Forest canopy in Backus Woods, ON (Photo by Neil Ever Osborne)

Forest canopy in Backus Woods, ON (Photo by Neil Ever Osborne)

I had the pleasure of working for the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) for the summer of 2019 as a conservation technician out of the Norfolk County, Ontario, office. When I first came to Norfolk, I was expecting to see mostly farmland and...

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Emblems of Canada: tree edition

Red maple (Photo by Jean Isaacs)

Red maple (Photo by Jean Isaacs)

Trees have played a significant cultural role in the lives of many Canadians; they are engrained in our national identity. Take the Canadian flag, for instance. It features a single, prominent red maple leaf in the centre, which speaks to the...

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One tree at a time: Canada’s forests

Tamarack forest (Photo by NCC)

Tamarack forest (Photo by NCC)

What is the one habitat type that runs through every province and territory, surrounds communities where most Canadians live and covers about one-third of the country? If you guessed forests, you would be right! We’re lucky to live in a...

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What the knowledge of how trees communicate means for forest conservation

A shady Douglas-fir forest (Photo by Jenny McCune)

A shady Douglas-fir forest (Photo by Jenny McCune)

Japanese people are generally familiar with shinrin-yoku or forest bathing — the practice of being immersed in a forest. In Germany, the concept is referred to as Waldsehligkeit, a feeling of profound well-being that comes from being...

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The Friday Five: Conservation and nature stories from around the world that caught our eye this week

Mantis shrimp (Photo by Dan Vaughan, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

Mantis shrimp (Photo by Dan Vaughan, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

Each week, countless inspiring and informative stories are published about conservation successes or discoveries in nature and wildlife around the world. Here are some of the conservation and nature stories that caught our attention the week of...

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