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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How species survive winter: Hibernation

A big brown bat

A big brown bat "hanging out." Often when found outside, big brown bats sit in this position on the side of a building, tree or (ideally not) on the ground. (Photo by Sarah Ludlow/NCC)

Previously, I discussed how small songbirds, and black-capped chickadees in particular, survive winter on the Canadian Prairies. Now I will discuss another strategy that animals use to survive the long, cold winter months: hibernation. Hibernation...

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How birds survive the winter

Black-capped chickadee in winter (Photo by NCC)

Black-capped chickadee in winter (Photo by NCC)

Winter on the Prairies is long and cold, often lasting from November until March, and with temperatures falling to -20 C or -30 C, it’s a wonder that anything can survive here at all. However, a walk around any residential neighbourhood or...

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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, Matthew Henry)

Pug wrapped up in a blanket — how I feel about winter. (Photo by Unsplash, Matthew 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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The wonder of winter wetlands

Brighton Wetland from a nearby field in early fall. Note that the cattails in the distance are already turning brown and falling down. (Photo by NCC)

Brighton Wetland from a nearby field in early fall. Note that the cattails in the distance are already turning brown and falling down. (Photo by NCC)

Two summers ago I spent a lot of time trekking through beautiful wetlands, both while working at NCC and for leisure. I loved every moment of my time there, whether I was wading out into knee-deep water to hand pull invasive European frog-bit,...

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Family fun in winter: Show your love for nature this Valentine's Day and Family Day

Out for a snowshoe in Gatineau Parc, QC (Photo by DJ)

Out for a snowshoe in Gatineau Parc, QC (Photo by DJ)

Imagine never having to hibernate again. Instead of watching endless movies, you could be out enjoying nature. Instead of spending countless hours on the computer or playing video games all weekend, you could be out getting fresh air and having...

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Ode to a nature commute – part 2, winter

Nearly frozen over Bow River with downtown Calgary in background. (Photo by Gayle Roodman/NCC staff)

Nearly frozen over Bow River with downtown Calgary in background. (Photo by Gayle Roodman/NCC staff)

This is part two of a four-part series on bike commuting through nature. Read part one – fall here. What kind of wingnut would bike commute in the dead of winter, you ask? Well, this one does, and I’ll tell you why. I find winter...

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7 physical activity resolutions…just in time for colder weather!

Snowman on frozen lake (Photo by Peritap, Wikimedia Commons)

Snowman on frozen lake (Photo by Peritap, Wikimedia Commons)

There are so many ways to be active while enjoying winter and all it has to offer. Don’t let the dark evenings and chilly weather stop you! Commit to keeping up your healthy, active lifestyle with these tips and ideas. Resolve to make...

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Hold the salt, please: The hidden cost of keeping the roads clear

Winter road treatment using salt brine (Photo by Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0)

Winter road treatment using salt brine (Photo by Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0)

On a brisk Toronto winter morning, my breath hangs in the air as I walk my dog to a nearby park. Our route may seem meandering, but it’s designed with purpose: finding the salt-free sidewalks. I’m grateful that the roads and sidewalks...

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Just get out the door

Bluebird sky hike at -30 C. (Photo courtesy of Gayle Roodman/NCC staff)

Bluebird sky hike at -30 C. (Photo courtesy of Gayle Roodman/NCC staff)

Back in the day, I was a long-distance runner. When two knee surgeries forced me to finally hang up my Asics for good in 2005, I switched to cycling. And to fill in the gaps in my fitness regime, I threw in hiking, cross-country skiing or whatever...

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