How a fragmented forest helps a flying fish

Redside dace (Photo by K. Schmidt)

Redside dace (Photo by K. Schmidt)

The tall trees in the MacMillan Nature Reserve stand like an island of green within the urban matrix of Vaughan, Ontario. Sprawling and sparkling new subdivisions splash up against three sides of this natural area; a five-lane roadway borders the...

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Dip your toes into World Water Day

Walking on the Barrens in NS (Photo by NCC)

Walking on the Barrens in NS (Photo by NCC)

Water is one of the most essential elements on our planet. Almost nine per cent, or 891,163 square kilometres, of Canada's total area is covered by fresh water. Our country's portion of the Great Lakes alone makes up nearly 10 per cent of the...

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Pricing the priceless: How the economics of natural capital can help us all better value nature

Walking through Emma Young forest, ON (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Walking through Emma Young forest, ON (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Putting a price tag on nature is challenging. Some people don’t believe it can be done. Some people hate the idea of it. Most will have no idea what it means. But there are new and emerging approaches to help us put a price on the services...

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Something's Fishy: An impending invader

Northern snakehead (Photo by National Aquarium, Washington, DC)

Northern snakehead (Photo by National Aquarium, Washington, DC)

I have an inherent fear of the dark. I’m not ashamed to admit that, without the company of my snoring pug, Molly, taking up half of my bed, I need to sleep with the light on. It’s not so much the darkness that scares me; it’s the...

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Why Canada matters on World Wetlands Day

Wetlands in the Marion Creek Benchlands, British Columbia (Photo by Tim Ennis/NCC)

Wetlands in the Marion Creek Benchlands, British Columbia (Photo by Tim Ennis/NCC)

While other nations have picked wetland wildlife, such as Finland’s whooper swan or Pakistan’s Indus crocodile, to represent their country, Canada is the only country in the world that has selected a wetland engineer as its national...

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Something's Fishy: A feast for fish

Illustration by Frits Ahledfedt

Illustration by Frits Ahledfedt

My favourite holiday memory is learning to make mashed potatoes in my grandma’s kitchen, her hand gently clasping mine as I firmly squished down into a large yellow bowl using an old wooden-handled masher. I recall the way she recited the...

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Granny cannot walk on water

Wetlands at Reiser property, AB (Photo by NCC)

Wetlands at Reiser property, AB (Photo by NCC)

Early this September, I participated in a Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) Conservation Volunteers (CV) event at the Reiser property, located approximately 115 kilometres southwest of Edmonton. I knew it would be a challenge, in part because of...

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Life in freshwater country: How helping water helps Canada (Part Two)

Bow Lake, AB (Photo by Sarah Boon)

Bow Lake, AB (Photo by Sarah Boon)

In Part One of this blog I presented an overview of Canada's freshwater resources and the need to protect them for people and nature. Here I will further explain how today’s problems need new solutions. Over the last year the Nature...

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Life in freshwater country: How helping water helps Canada (Part One)

Elbow Lake, Frontenac Arch, ON (Photo by NCC)

Elbow Lake, Frontenac Arch, ON (Photo by NCC)

If you are Canadian, either by chance or by choice, you probably have a story about water. It might be learning to paddle a canoe, pulling your first fish from the water or standing on the dock on the May 24 weekend with friends, challenging each...

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Hittin' the marsh

My one educational breakthrough was to teach them to emulate my hayseed ways by chewing on a piece of grass before touring the property (Photo by NCC)

My one educational breakthrough was to teach them to emulate my hayseed ways by chewing on a piece of grass before touring the property (Photo by NCC)

It wasn’t even really that hot. I think that’s the thing that got me. Warm? I guess…for early June. Sunny? Mostly, but there were clouds and a bit of a breeze, so even saying it was warm is pretty generous. And forget about a...

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