This guest blog (including the photos) was written by the Comeau family. Monte Comeau was the grand prize winner of last year’s 75th Anniversary Photo Contest. He and his family were awarded a horseback trip for two courtesy of Copper Cayuse Outfitters. Are you interested in submitting to our 2015 Nature Photo Contest? Are you curious about the grand prize? The Comeau family, last year’s photo contest winners, recently redeemed their prize and went on an expedition with Copper Cayuse Outfitters. This year’s top prize will be similar. Here are the Comeau’s highlights from their exciting adventure. Our trip began with an introduction to the guides and horses and a brief information session then we were off on our first days ride! … read more →
Are you looking for a fun, innovative gift for Father’s Day? Want to find a way to spend some quality time with your Dad and spend time outdoors? Well if your Dad likes puttering in the backyard, has a green thumb (or likes to think he does), or is always looking for home improvement jobs, look no further! Nature Canada has the perfect solution – put your dad on the map. That is, put a space that’s special to your dad on the map – such as your yard, a nearby green space, a park, or even a campsite. Stumped? Try to think of where your dad goes to connect with nature… Is it nearby nature? Is it in your… read more →
With the opportunity to participate in IceWatch this month, we decided we want to know more about ice! Ice seems to be simply a state of water, however many do not know that there are different types of ice. These ice types are known as the phases in which the ice is in. Depending on the age, ice can vary in salinity, roughness, and the overall strength. The phases of ice range from I to XVI (1 to 16). These phases describe the characteristics of the ice itself, explaining the chemical structure of the ice and at what temperature they are formed. For example, Ice IX is when the ice is in a tetragonal metastable phase. This ice is formed… read more →
Last week residents in Ontario and Quebec were waken up at night from loud booming sounds. What was the cause of this? Well, you may not believe it but it was from ice! Ice or frost quakes, as they are called, are when crashes occur from the breaking up of ice. These quakes are scientifically known as cryoseisms, and they are caused by water in the ground expanding at cold temperatures. Once the water expands, the ice and ground below cracks and crumbles causing loud noises. Not only are there loud noises, but these ice quakes can even shake the ground. In Ottawa, Nature Canada’s staff member Julia Gamble said “At first it felt like snow or ice was cracking and… read more →
“Do we have this one yet?” Harold Sotomayor asked his friend and project partner Patrick Killeen after we came across a white capped mushroom covered by bushes to the side of the trail. “Well, let’s snap a photo of it anyways, just in case.” Welcome to the world of the Mud Lake Biodiversity project, an ongoing citizen science experiment in which the goal is to document and record every living organism in the Mud Lake Conservation Area of Ottawa, Ontario. The project, which has attracted photo contributions from outside members of the community, is a mix of deductive science and taxonomic gamification and has helped its creators learn a lot about their local environment and its biodiversity. Sotomayor explained the… read more →
Nature Canada wants to thank the wonderful volunteers at Foresters for joining us at the Fall BioBlitz. Foresters insurance company partners with charitable organizations to support families and communities through volunteering events. The Fall BioBlitz was one such event. 15 volunteers joined Nature Canada at the Fall BioBlitz at Mud Lake to build bird and bat houses. In total 24 bird houses and 12 bat houses were constructed and donated to Nature Canada. We will work with communities to place the bird and bat houses in critical spots around the city to support healthy urban wildlife populations. Thank you Foresters volunteers! Photography by Susanne Ure.
Thanks to everyone who came out to take part in the adventure and help us identify local wildlife at Nature Canada’s Fall BioBlitz. Over 150 citizens of the national capital region accompanied local expert naturalists on guided walks where they learned to identify plants, birds, amphibians, reptiles and more! The BioBlitz brought out experts and amateur enthusiasts alike on one of the first brisk weekends of the fall to Mud Lake conservation area. Mud Lake is considered by many to be a wilderness gem in the heart of our busy city and is found within the Lac Deschênes- Ottawa River Important Bird Area. It was the perfect location for such an inventory. Easy to get to and containing various habitats… read more →
Mark your calendars! Did you know September 21st is Zero Emissions Days? This event aims towards giving our planet a break and reducing the use of fossil fuels in our everyday lives. What do this day entail? Here are some fun facts and ways to participate: This day was specifically chosen because the length of days and nights are equal! It is the same day as International Day of Peace and World Gratitude Day The Goal: Have minimal use of gas, oil, coal, or electricity generated by fossil fuels One way to do this is to eat food that does not require the use of energy to make, or prepare your food a day early Join the fun and make… read more →
This past weekend Nature Canada hosted a Fall BioBlitz at Mud Lake Conservation Area in Ottawa, ON. Over 150 local citizens came out to explore the area and learn the secrets of identifying birds, plants, insects, reptiles and more! Everyone had a great time enjoying the beautiful area and the brisk weather. Here are some photos from the event. Thanks to our wonderful experts for making this event possible. You can read full details of the event and see the complete list of species identified at the BioBlitz (coming soon).
Vancouver now has over 75 of them; Halifax 25; and Ottawa, at least 40. No matter where you look in Canada, community gardens are becoming one of the country’s quickest growing outdoor activities as more people look for a way to get outdoors, grow their own plants and get back to nature. A community garden is an urban green space allotted to the growing of plants by the public. All manner of plants can be grown, from herbs and vegetables to fruits and flowers. The green space is divided into plots and each plot is assigned to the public on a first come first serve basis. The spaces themselves are as diverse as the plants grown on them. Some are… read more →