Fall 2011

Fall 2011

Passing on the conservation torch. By Caroline Schultz   Ontario Nature’s fall birding hot spots: staff reveal their favourite places to witness the fall migration; farmers learn to live with at-risk species; who speaks for the environment in the upcoming election?; Peter Gilchrist, past president of Ontario Nature’s Board of Directors and champion birder. Honouring […]

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A native non-native

A native non-native

I have some reflections on Lorraine Johnson’s “Natural invaders” article on invasive non-native plants [Spring 2011, page 22]. It would be wonderful if nurseries in Ontario began to label native plants that are good for sustaining birds and other animals as “eco-friendly.” Education would be a necessary component, as gardeners would need to be convinced […]

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Looking to the future

Looking to the future

By Caroline Schultz Over the course of Ontario Nature’s 80-year history, we have fought numerous battles for conservation. With you, we have witnessed many wins for the environment and also, regrettably, some losses. As the voice for nature in Ontario, we find ourselves preoccupied with the most immediate conservation battles of the day: fending off […]

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Ontario Nature’s Watch List

Ontario Nature’s Watch List

By John Hassell Last June, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources released an updated version of its Species at Risk in Ontario List, and the numbers are disquieting. Forty-seven species are listed as being of special concern, 53 are threatened, 94 are endangered and 13 are locally extinct. Three species are of particular concern to […]

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Ontario Nature’s fall birding hot spots

Ontario Nature’s fall birding hot spots

By John Hassell You can learn a lot about the culture of an office by its internal memos. This past June, Ontario Nature’s executive director, Caroline Schultz circulated an all-staff memo alerting us that several chimney swifts – listed by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada as a threatened species – were […]

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Wetlands in trouble

Wetlands in trouble

By Joshua Wise Ontario Nature, working in partnership with the David Suzuki Foundation, Ecojustice, Ducks Unlimited Canada and Earthroots, are publishing two reports, one focused on the level of protection afforded fragile wetlands in the Greenbelt, the other on the rich diversity of species and ecosystems within the Greenbelt.

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Animal farm

Animal farm

By Andrea McDowell “Farming,” says Henry Bakker of Field Sparrow Farms, “is about good land management,” thus explaining his participation in Trent University’s innovative two-year research project on alternative approaches to hay harvesting that can help protect important bobolink habitat.

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The big pit

The big pit

When the Highland Companies announced plans to dig one of the largest quarries in North America, a small but determined army of farmers, citizens and local politicians declared war. And, in the court of public opinion, they’re winning. By Cecily Ross

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Congratulations to our Conservation Award Winners

Congratulations to our Conservation Award Winners

Ontario Nature celebrated 80 years of protecting wild species and wild spaces at our annual general meeting last June. One of the highlights of our gathering at the Ganaraska Forest Centre on the Oak Ridges Moraine was presenting our conservation awards to eight individuals and groups that have made exceptional contributions to natural habitat protection. […]

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Treasure islands

Treasure islands

Wild spaces, like Ontario Nature’s reserves, are rich in plants, animals and history. By Peter Middleton Last June at Ontario Nature’s annual general meeting, I joined a field trip on which our guides led us through a rare remnant of prairie and black-oak savannah habitat on a lovely stretch of the Oak Ridges Moraine. We […]

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Vote for the environment

Vote for the environment

By Peter Gorrie It often seems that specific issues count for little during elections. Instead,voters are subjected to general images of each party, encapsulated in brief, usually negative sound bites. Campaigning for the October 6 Ontario election, the Official Opposition Conservatives simply distil Premier Dalton McGuinty and his eight-year Liberal administration into one word: “Taxman.” The […]

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Out of the woods

Out of the woods

By Sharon Oosthoek The woodlands of London, Ontario, have been saved from the axe. Legal battles over stronger protection for the city’s wooded areas finally ended in May, when local developers lost a bid to appeal the case to the Supreme Court of Canada.

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Meet our board: Peter Gilchrist, Past President

Meet our board: Peter Gilchrist, Past President

John Hassell What initially got you interested in nature? Peter Gilchrist I grew up as an outdoor boy in Ottawa when the city was just developing, so there were farms and streams to explore in the immediate area. It was fun to be outdoors, but it wasn’t until my mid to late twenties when I […]

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The Ottawa Valley in autumn

The Ottawa Valley in autumn

A guided tour of nine great nature getaways in eastern Ontario. By Caroline Schultz and Mark Stabb

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The scent of a turtle

The scent of a turtle

Scientists turn to man’s best friend to help recovery efforts for one of our most endangered species. By Conor Mihell

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Wild child

Wild child

Our Nature Guardians program sows the seeds for a new crop of environmentalists. By Denis Seguin

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