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The buzz about bumble bees

Western bumble bee (Photo by sydcannings, CC BY-NC 4.0)

Western bumble bee (Photo by sydcannings, CC BY-NC 4.0)

The western bumble bee is a medium-sized (measuring one to two centimetres in length) bumble bee, with a band of yellow hair across its thorax (the area between its head and abdomen), in line with the base of its wings. It also most often has a...

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A Canadian river story

La Chasse-galerie, 1906, by Henri Julien (Photo by Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec)

La Chasse-galerie, 1906, by Henri Julien (Photo by Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec)

Our rivers carry many responsibilities. For years, they have been pathways for communication, making connections and sharing traditions.Like any great journey, these rivers have stories. From coast to coast, myths and legends have been passed down...

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Intertidal life

An intertidal zone on Clayoquot Island (Photo by NCC)

An intertidal zone on Clayoquot Island (Photo by NCC)

Water flows in the fabric of West Coast culture. For those of us steeped in the maritime life, resisting the pull of the ocean is as futile as trying to still the tides. In my twenties, I experimented with living away from coastal British...

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One tree at a time: Canada’s forests

Tamarack forest (Photo by NCC)

Tamarack forest (Photo by NCC)

What one habitat type runs through every province and territory, surrounds communities where most Canadians live and covers about 40 per cent of the country? If you guessed forests, you'd be right! We’re lucky to live in a country dominated...

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A close encounter like no otter

Two river otters peeping their heads above the water (Photo by Nila Sivatheesan/NCC staff)

Two river otters peeping their heads above the water (Photo by Nila Sivatheesan/NCC staff)

Walking through fields of wildflowers and towering trees is an incredible feeling. It reminds me that there’s so much more to this life than just me and my bubble. It’s a humbling feeling. But what’s even more incredible is...

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A case of mistaken identity: Goldenrod and ragweed

Monarch butterfly on Canada goldenrod (Photo by Peter Jessen, CC BY-NC 4.0)

Monarch butterfly on Canada goldenrod (Photo by Peter Jessen, CC BY-NC 4.0)

I count myself fortunate when the change of seasons doesn’t bring about a runny nose, itchy eyes, headache and coughing, among other symptoms brought about by pollen (a fine powder produced by plants for sexual reproduction). Some pollen is...

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Wild about chickens

Lacy Mae and Matilda (Photo by LM Neilson/NCC staff)

Lacy Mae and Matilda (Photo by LM Neilson/NCC staff)

Today it starts at 5:36 a.m. The rusty cackle slides in through my open window with the early morning light. I pause for a brief second to make sure I really heard the sound before opening my eyes and swinging my legs over the edge of the bed. The...

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Nature-based solutions: Benefits for people and the planet

Alpine Lake on Darkwoods, BC (Photo by Bruce Kirkby)

Alpine Lake on Darkwoods, BC (Photo by Bruce Kirkby)

There is no longer any question, scientifically speaking, that the effects of climate change are increasing both the rate and extent of biodiversity loss, not just in Canada, but globally. When combined with human impacts, such as land conversion...

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Hooray for hummingbirds

An Anna's hummingbird on one of her nests. (Photo by Eric Pittman)

An Anna's hummingbird on one of her nests. (Photo by Eric Pittman)

You hear a buzz and see a streak of green, red or purple, and then you realize that a hummingbird just flew by! Hummingbirds are fascinating creatures that have captured our attention for as long as humans have co-existed with them. They are...

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Find the Birds – How a mobile game can aid conservation

Vermillion flycatchers in the game (Graphic courtesy of Adam Dhalla)

Vermillion flycatchers in the game (Graphic courtesy of Adam Dhalla)

It is not a stretch to say that our planet is in dire need of more conservationists, and environmentally minded people in general. Birds and birdwatching are gateways to introducing conservation and science to a new generation. Growing up in...

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