The Great Backyard Bird Count: Counting birds for community science

Dressed for birding in the polar vortex (Photo by Sarah Ludlow/NCC staff)

Dressed for birding in the polar vortex (Photo by Sarah Ludlow/NCC staff)

The Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) is a global community science project that aims to gather a snapshot of bird populations and distributions in mid-February, before their annual spring migrations begin. The GBBC runs for four days each year,...

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Heard it from a Scout: Leaving only footprints in nature

View from the top of Eagle Bluffs, BC. (Photo by Emilie Diver)

View from the top of Eagle Bluffs, BC. (Photo by Emilie Diver)

The view was incredible and the challenge of the hike up to the Eagle Bluffs in North Vancouver made it even more worthwhile. Ruby, my yellow lab, was happily sitting and begging for food from me and my Scout troop. Her behaviour was in stark...

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Beginner's guide to winter tree identification

White ash bud and twig (Photo by Quinten Wiergersma, CC BY 4.0)

White ash bud and twig (Photo by Quinten Wiergersma, CC BY 4.0)

Many trees are easier to identify without their leaves. When you’re out for a winter hike, it may seem that there aren’t many clues to identifying the trees around you. Because trees are sporting bare branches, you might think they...

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Bird diversity is linked to human happiness

Cardinal on the fence (Photo by Nathan Anderson from Unsplash)

Cardinal on the fence (Photo by Nathan Anderson from Unsplash)

How to protect avian biodiversity and our well-being Are the early morning songs of black-capped chickadees a welcome sound? Does watching a flurry of happy finches and jays feasting on berries bring you joy? If you answered yes, then it may...

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A McKenzie Towne Almanac

Inverness Pond, McKenzie Towne (Christine Beevis Trickett/NCC staff)

Inverness Pond, McKenzie Towne (Christine Beevis Trickett/NCC staff)

The slowing down over the past 10–11 months with the COVID-19 pandemic and its related restrictions has meant more time to be in one place and appreciate the nature around me. While where I live — McKenzie Towne, in southern Calgary...

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How tracking animals leaves a different imprint on winter

Tracks of a coyote walking - note the straight track pattern. (Photo by NCC)

Tracks of a coyote walking - note the straight track pattern. (Photo by NCC)

It isn’t a secret that most city dwellers have complicated relationships with winter (myself included). When the weather takes a turn for the worse, it seems to have a domino effect on urban centres, increasing traffic and slowing everything...

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Nature therapy (part five): Motivated by Nature

Winter smile (Photo by Amanda Cashin Photography)

Winter smile (Photo by Amanda Cashin Photography)

It’s no secret that this year has been, and still is, challenging. During the winter, it is important to think about what we can do to help combat the winter blues. Whether we are working from home and indoors more, and/or suffer from...

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Nova Scotia through the seasons

Victoria Park, Truro (Photo by Brittany Foster)

Victoria Park, Truro (Photo by Brittany Foster)

Living on the southern coast of mainland Nova Scotia, I have the opportunity to experience each season in all of its natural glory. Winter, spring, summer and fall have their own unique sights, smells and sounds. They are marked distinctions in...

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5 tips on how to enjoy winter if you’re not a winter person

Pug wrapped up in a blanket — how I feel about winter. (Photo by Unsplash, Natthew Henry)

Pug wrapped up in a blanket — how I feel about winter. (Photo by Unsplash, Natthew Henry)

Have you ever seen the commercials where people frolic about in the snow or cross-country ski in the woods, and thought, “Canadian winter is great, but I’m more comfy on my couch”? I have, and I don’t think I’m alone...

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A love letter to the mountains

Hiking in the Canadian Rockies (Photo courtesy of Gayle Roodman/NCC)

Hiking in the Canadian Rockies (Photo courtesy of Gayle Roodman/NCC)

Dear mountains, You don’t know me personally, but you might recognize me by my feet. I’ve skied, hiked, snowshoed and biked your contours for the past several decades. You see, you changed the course of my life. When I finished high...

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