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Taking the creep out of creeping Jenny

Conservation Volunteers at Westmeath Freshwater Cave tackling creeping Jenny (Photo by Cheryl Spotswood)

Conservation Volunteers at Westmeath Freshwater Cave tackling creeping Jenny (Photo by Cheryl Spotswood)

On July 26, 2018, 14 Conservation Volunteers (CV) journeyed to the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Westmeath Freshwater Caves property, which is part of the longest underwater cave system in Canada, to remove creeping Jenny. The Westmeath...

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Something's Fishy: A whirlwind of a problem

Whirling disease can cause a severe spinal deformity in infected fish (Photo by Colorado Parks and Wildlife)

Whirling disease can cause a severe spinal deformity in infected fish (Photo by Colorado Parks and Wildlife)

As I spend most of my free time outdoors, I’ve been fortunate enough to see many great examples of Canadian nature. I have watched a family of deer feeding by a stream in Alberta, seen tracks of several elusive mammal species, such as...

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Something's Fishy: A razor-sharp invader

Zebra mussel (Photo by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

Zebra mussel (Photo by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

My first encounter with zebra mussels is an experience many Canadians can relate to. It started with searing pain, a yelp and a quick hobble out of the water and up onto a rocky shoreline to examine the bottom of my foot, sliced open ever so...

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Sharks? In Canada?

Great white shark (Photo by Terry Goss/Wikimedia Commons)

Great white shark (Photo by Terry Goss/Wikimedia Commons)

Do you really know what’s swimming in Canada’s oceans? When most people think of sharks, they usually associate them with tropical environments. However, you may be surprised to learn that Canada’s oceans have a great diversity...

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Long live loons and their research

I paddled hundreds of kilometres searching for loons and their nests. (Photo by Kent Prior)

I paddled hundreds of kilometres searching for loons and their nests. (Photo by Kent Prior)

In the 1970s, North Americans were already concerned about the effects of human activity on the common loon, a large charismatic diving bird that breeds on lakes. My bachelor’s thesis at Queen’s University examined this concern on...

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Wading through the wonders of wetlands

Forested wetlands in summer (Photo by Mary Gartshore)

Forested wetlands in summer (Photo by Mary Gartshore)

Wetlands are dynamic places, where the land is, quite literally, wet. From day-to-day fluctuations, to seasonal changes, the amount of water in a wetland can change over time. As water levels shift, you might not know exactly what to expect when...

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Conservation needs a common language to describe Canada’s ecosystems

Tatlayoko Ranch, British Columbia, (Photo by Bernadette Mertens)

Tatlayoko Ranch, British Columbia, (Photo by Bernadette Mertens)

“The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their proper name.” ~ Ancient Chinese proverb For organisms, we use the concept of a “species” to assign proper names. Having standard names for species is critical in both...

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Call of the Wetland

Volunteers search the wetland shoreline for amphibians. (Photo by Melanie Rathburn)

Volunteers search the wetland shoreline for amphibians. (Photo by Melanie Rathburn)

Have you ever heard frogs or toads calling in an urban environment? Or spotted a secretive salamander as it makes it way to an urban pond? If you live in Calgary, the Miistakis Institute is interested in your observations! With Miistakis’...

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Heard it from a Scout: Wonderful wetlands

Forested wetlands in summer (Photo by Mary Gartshore)

Forested wetlands in summer (Photo by Mary Gartshore)

Wetlands are a pivotal part of Canada’s environment. They play a vital role in maintaining the natural balance of ecosystems. Wetlands are areas of land that become submerged or saturated with water either year-round or throughout part of...

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Something's Fishy: Hook, line and thinker

Child enjoying the weather and fishing (Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services Headquarters, CC BY 2.0)

Child enjoying the weather and fishing (Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services Headquarters, CC BY 2.0)

One of my favourite things about fish is how deeply rooted they are in Canadian culture. From traditional depictions in Indigenous artwork to the crispy, flaky haddock served with a side of PEI potatoes at fish and chips joints across the country,...

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