ESA regulation challenged in court

woodland caribou, photo credit: Bruce McKay

woodland caribou, photo credit: Bruce McKay

It is not easy to sit quietly in court while the opposing side takes a sledgehammer to your core values. For instance, as long as an endangered species doesn’t disappear from Ontario altogether, then Cabinet is free to approve any regulation it chooses under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Recovery and benefit to the species be damned. As long as the minister formed an opinion, that’s all we are entitled to know – not how the opinion was arrived at. Transparency and process be damned.

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Marvellous moraine: A winter wonderland in our backyard

Moraine buttonThis blog is the first in a series that will celebrate the Oak Ridges Moraine and engage readers in the upcoming review of the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan. Learn more about the moraine and plan review by visiting marvellousmoraine.org.

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Marvel at the Moraine: Contest Rules and Submission Guidelines

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The Oak Ridges Moraine Partnership for 2015 is excited to announce the launch of something marvellous! In celebration of the Marvellous Moraine, we’re asking our friends and followers far and wide to participate in our ‘Marvel at the Moraine’ contest! Read on for submission guidelines…

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Wild Bees in Trouble

American bumblebee,  Credit: Thom Wilson of Baltimore City, MD, USA

American bumblebee, Credit: Thom Wilson of Baltimore City, MD, USA

 
Half of the bumblebee species in eastern North America are in decline. This trend holds true in southern Ontario, where seven of the 14 bumblebee species found in surveys from 1971 – 1973 were found to be either absent or in decline when surveyed 30 years later. Some of these, like the rusty-patched, the gypsy cuckoo and the American bumblebee, were once common and/or widespread in parts of the province. The causes of decline are not fully understood, though it is widely accepted that habitat destruction and the use of pesticides are significant threats. Continue reading

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Saving the shrike: a photo essay by Lydia Dotto

I frequently visit the Carden Plain Important Bird Area in the Kawarthas to photograph the many birds that pass through there during spring and fall migration. Having read that it was difficult to photograph the eastern loggerhead shrike – a critically endangered species in Canada – I was intrigued by a captive breeding and release program taking place in the area.

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Interesting Insects: a photo journal by Matt Jenkins

Photography has always been a passion of mine. At first, I was interested only in macro photography, but soon enough I began challenging myself to look at the big picture and shoot landscapes. Now I enjoy capturing all types of images. Continue reading

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More than pollinators and dragonflies at Nature Reserves

great spangled fritillary butterfly, Lost Bay Nature Reserve, credit: Noah Cole

great spangled fritillary butterfly, Lost Bay Nature Reserve, credit: Noah Cole

Ontario Nature’s 24 nature reserves are teeming with life. Along with the many common species, about one-fifth of Ontario’s more than 200 species at risk are found on the reserves. This past spring and summer, I visited a few of the reserves and saw songbirds, butterflies, wildflowers, dragonflies, and many other plants and animals. Here are a few of my favourites. Continue reading

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Let your voice bee heard

Bumble bee and honey bee butterfly milkweed Credit: Martin LaBar

Bumblebee and honey bee butterfly milkweed Credit: Martin LaBar

I admit it. The possibility of a bee sting made me uneasy, and I more than likely mixed up a bee and a wasp mid-swat. I certainly didn’t think much about the honey or wild native bees’ ongoing survival. There are millions of them out there, right?

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ALUS tour features projects new and old

Wetland at Van Til Farm

Wetland at Van Til Farm

Many of us know that when farmers and conservationists work together, both agriculture and nature benefit. But how many of us have seen this in action? I became one of the fortunate few when I attended the 9th annual Alternative Land Use Services (ALUS) farm tour in Norfolk County. Continue reading

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Ode to Ontario Nature

Modelling Ontario Nature gear with coworker, Maggie Janik.

Modelling Ontario Nature gear with coworker, Maggie Janik.

Even though a grand adventure was on the horizon, I dreaded leaving Ontario Nature last month. On my last day, I was sappy one moment, numb the next.

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