As an Ontario Nature intern this past summer, I had the opportunity to visit farmers in the ALUS Ontario community of Grey-Bruce, one of four such communities in Ontario. ALUS is short for Alternative Land Use Services, which is a community-developed, farmer-delivered program that supports the enhancement and maintenance of nature’s benefits on farms. Continue reading
I am sipping coffee and munching an apple as I write this blog. To enjoy such daily pleasures, we rely on pollinators. In fact, about one of every three bites of food we eat depends on insect pollinators. Unfortunately, the populations of insect pollinators like bumblebees and honeybees are declining. Continue reading
It was a warm Saturday afternoon in June when we gathered at Keppel Croft Gardens for a 1.5 hour bioblitz focusing on reptiles and amphibians. Our enthusiastic leader was Ontario Nature volunteer Ryan Lauzon, and our gracious hosts were Dawn and Bill, Keppel Croft’s owners. All three are serious nature lovers, and Ryan is particularly enthusiastic about herpetology. Some of the kids in the group had previous herping experience. One boy told the group that he had spotted 17 salamanders at his cottage nearby. Continue reading
You know you have a birding problem when a recurring blue-winged warbler song enters your dream. The problem isn’t so much the song, but the accompanying panic related to an upcoming Carden Alvar trip and your inability to recall the song of the blue-winged warbler’s close relation – the golden-winged warbler. This is the bird you are desperate to hear and see.
Enthusiasm can be curiously catchy. Before heading out on my first-ever bioblitz last Saturday in Huron County, I was mildly interested in reptiles and amphibians. To be clear, I wished these critters no harm. In fact, I worried about their survival in this face of habitat fragmentation, pollution and climate change, but I did not yearn for encounters with them. Continue reading
Ontario Nature asked Ontario’s four major political parties five important questions about their plans for nature to find out where they stand on critical environmental issues that will impact the future health of the province.
Step 2. Lift the turtle into your canoe. Word of warning – this is easier said than done. Be prepared to need the strength of two people, and bend at the knees so you don’t put your back out. Continue reading
It’s not often that birding becomes an adventure sport, but some birds are worth chasing. And by chasing, I mean sliding through mud, crossing creeks and coming home slightly battered and dirty. But there’s a pride to showing-off the scrapes and bruises acquired in the pursuit of an elusive bird. Continue reading
“Time spent amongst trees is never wasted time.” Katrina Mayer
I couldn’t agree more. Fresh air, birds singing, the sound of running water – how can you go wrong? Today, I’d like to tell you about five of our nature reserves that are ideal for hiking and reconnecting with nature. I consider these properties to be hidden gems. If you live in the Greater Toronto Area, you will have to drive a few hours to get to them, but trust me – they are worth the drive. Continue reading
The short time I spent as an intern in the communications department at Ontario Nature left me feeling like I don’t get outside nearly enough. After getting to know the wonderful staff and talking with passionate members at events, I felt inspired to get out and enjoy nature. Continue reading