I enjoy winter for many reasons — you have to if you’re going to live in Ottawa! — and one of the things I look forward to most is the tranquility and peace that comes after a snowfall. I take my dog Jasper into the woods behind my house and we make our own path through the newly fallen snow, and the only sounds I hear are our laboured breathing. I’ll look up every now and then, scan the area, and usually not a thing is moving. Everything is frozen in place. This month’s photo of the month evokes that same feeling of calm, of stasis after a snowfall. It’s… read more →
Just in time for the holidays, Nature Canada is giving a gift to the planet! We’re ending direct mailings to recruit new donors for one year in an effort to reduce our paper consumption. We’re placing a one year moratorium on the charity’s direct mailings to recruit new donors, in an effort to reduce paper consumption. Why? Paper consumption diminishes natural resources and increases greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere, which are accelerating our climate crisis. We feel it is important for Nature Canada, as a conservation organization, to do what we can to reduce the amount of paper we consume in our own operations. Rising levels of wood and paper… read more →
My colleague Lori received an excited phone call from her husband Peter on Friday, saying that there was a Snowy Owl in a tree outside the suburban business park building where he works. The Snowy Owl was being pestered by many crows but it was resolutely standing its ground in a pine tree in the parking lot. We excitedly asked Peter to get some photos and send them to us. One of Peter’s colleagues dashed out and snapped these great photos. So, what’s this owl doing in a parking lot in Ottawa? Snowy Owls breed on the northern tundra, and in some years many of them remain on their breeding… read more →
We have a winner! We received many creative, wonderful videos showcasing your favourite places in nature, for Nature Canada’s Favourite Places Video Contest. Now, for your viewing pleasure, I’d like to present Laura Parsley’s video, “Mapleton Park.” (Laura is now the owner of an Apple iPod touch.) We also have an honorable mention who came very close to being selected as the favourite among the gang here at Nature Canada. From Joan Ouellette, Conversation with a Wolf: Congratulations Laura, and thank you to everyone who shared their favourite place in nature with us! Visit our contest web site to view all nature videos submitted to us. Enjoy!
Check out this cute and funny video with a serious message… The video is part of the BBC’s ‘Breathing Places’ project, which includes a practical and easy-to-navigate website designed to help people help some of the UK’s most beautiful environments and their inhabitants.
Need gift ideas for yourself or the nature lover in your family? The gang at Nature Canada offers these suggestions that are sure to fill you and your family with holiday cheer! Snow shoes We’re in for a long winter. Turn it into a positive and explore nature by snow shoe! Chutneys, Relishes, and Other Preserves Great if they’re from your own garden, or purchased from a local grower. If you know someone with a real appreciation for good food, you can make them happy all year long with a membership in an organic cooperative that keeps them supplied with fresh fruits and vegetables. Build a Metre of the Trans… read more →
In a sad sign of society’s continuing estrangement from nature, the Oxford Junior Dictionary is banishing more than 90 nature words from its newest edition. (see full list of removed words) Children will no longer see the following words in their dictionary: Beaver, boar, cheetah, colt, cygnet, doe, drake, ferret, heron, herring, kingfisher, lark, leopard, lobster, magpie, minnow, mussel, newt, otter, ox, oyster, panther, pelican, piglet, plaice, porcupine, porpoise, raven, starling, stoat, stork, terrapin, thrush, weasel, wren. Acorn, almond, apricot, ash, beech, beetroot, blackberry, bluebell, bramble, brook, buttercup, carnation, catkin, cauliflower, chestnut, clover, conker, cowslip, crocus, dandelion, fern, fungus, gooseberry, hazel, hazelnut, heather, holly, horse chestnut, ivy, lavender, leek, melon,… read more →
From one of our favourite photo contributors in Nature Canada’s online community, Jim Dubois. Striking resemblance, no? Dilbert’s boss… Dilbert’s boss’s twin? Jim’s got his own web site, you should check it out. Thanks Jim!
Wildlife in the Mackenzie River Valley have gained a reprieve as plans to industrialize their habitat have been delayed by at least a year. From Reuters: A regulatory panel weighing a proposal for a $16.2-billion pipeline to ship gas from Canada’s Arctic will not complete its report for one year, spelling another in a long list of delays for the embattled project. The Joint Review Panel, which is examining the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline, said it will release its report in December, 2009, months later that expected. More reporting here and here. The Joint Review Panel has a huge job ahead, and the delay in… read more →
Last week, the Boreal Songbird Initiative, Pembina Institute and the Natural Resources Defence Council released a report describing the predicted impact of the tar sands on bird populations. The report, Danger in the Nursery, used modelling based on best current knowledge of bird populations in northeastern Alberta, combined with documented and estimated impacts of different elements of tar sands development and expansion on bird populations. The picture is grim for many reasons. Impacts include: direct lost of habitat to strip mining settling ponds threat to migrants fragmentation and destruction of habitat from deep drilling installations with their road and pipeline networks air pollution from the operations and the production and… read more →