The making of a bison song

Bison and a sunset at OMB, SK (Photo by Jason Bantle)

Bison and a sunset at OMB, SK (Photo by Jason Bantle)

Matthew Braun is program director for the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s (NCC’s) Working Landscapes Program in Saskatchewan, and Simon Neufeld is director of research and development for Earth Alive Clean Technologies in Quebec, a...

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Appreciating hibernation

Richardson's ground squirrel (Photo by Charles Thomas Hash, Jr. CC-BY-NC)

Richardson's ground squirrel (Photo by Charles Thomas Hash, Jr. CC-BY-NC)

January 21 marks Squirrel Appreciation Day, an occasion meant to recognize squirrels’ importance in nature. It also happens to be the middle of winter, a time when many animals, including some squirrel species, are hibernating. To me, one of...

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Not to be outfoxed

Swift fox (Photo by Karol Dabbs)

Swift fox (Photo by Karol Dabbs)

Back in 2017, I wrote a blog detailing my ongoing quest to find a swift fox in the wild. A little over two years later, I thought I would provide an update. Since December 2017, I have continued to spend a substantial amount of time wandering the...

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Wallowing: More than scratching an itch for plains bison

Bison at Old Man on His Back Prairie and Heritage Conservation Area (Photo by Jason Bantle)

Bison at Old Man on His Back Prairie and Heritage Conservation Area (Photo by Jason Bantle)

Have you ever had an itch that you just couldn’t scratch? Needed to cool down on a hot summer day in the Prairies? Want a new way to show off to the ladies? If you answered yes to any of these questions, have you tried simply rolling around...

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The ants that herd aphids

Oleander aphids (Photo by cory_silas_sheffield, CC BY-NC 4.0)

Oleander aphids (Photo by cory_silas_sheffield, CC BY-NC 4.0)

On July 21, 2021, I was carrying out annual conservation monitoring at the Old Man on His Back Prairie and Heritage Conservation Area (OMB), when I came across an unusual sight: much of the silver sagebrush that covers the property was covered...

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Grasslands, close-up

Western bergamot (Photo by NCC)

Western bergamot (Photo by NCC)

As a conservation intern with the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) this past summer, I have had the wonderful opportunity to explore the land that we help conserve here in Saskatchewan. Growing up in this province, I developed a love for the...

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Volunteers make Big Valley flourish

Volunteers and staff prior to planting (Photo by NCC)

Volunteers and staff prior to planting (Photo by NCC)

The Qu’Appelle River Valley is one of Saskatchewan’s prominent scenic landscapes. Its picturesque slopes and waterways host a wide variety species and offer views unlike any other in the province. I’ve driven through this region...

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Unlikely animal pairings: Part two

Brown-headed cowbird (Photo by David Dodd CC BY-NC)

Brown-headed cowbird (Photo by David Dodd CC BY-NC)

This is part two of a two-part series on unlikely animal pairings. Check out part one, the hunting partnership between an American badger and a coyote, here. Another unlikely animal partnership features a bird that is known to take advantage of...

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Gardening with native plants this spring

Wild bergamot (Photo by Sarah Ludlow/NCC staff)

Wild bergamot (Photo by Sarah Ludlow/NCC staff)

I love to garden. I excitedly begin planning for the next year as soon as the autumn chill settles over the Prairies. I’m always impatient for spring to arrive, and it doesn't help when the seed catalogues start arriving in November. I find...

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A peak experience at Buffalo Pound

Buffalo Pound Lake, SK (Photo by Bill Armstrong)

Buffalo Pound Lake, SK (Photo by Bill Armstrong)

Many Canadians, I think, perceive Saskatchewan to be one billiard table-flat, never-ending field of wheat. Not so. To prove my point, I recently made a second visit to a property at Buffalo Pound Lake, where the Nature Conservancy Canada (NCC) is...

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