Northern solutions

Northern solutions

By Peter Rosenbluth Working with Environment North and Lakehead University’s Faculty of Education and Student Union, Ontario Nature’s Northern Connections program held a one-day conference on adaptation to climate change last March in Thunder Bay, which more than 80 people attended.

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A very surprising discovery

A very surprising discovery

By Allan Britnell Flamborough resident Paul D. Smith has turned the beach-vacation hobby of collecting interesting shells into an innovative biodiversity study. Each year since 2007, he has searched for freshwater mussel shells along the muddy shoreline of Cootes Paradise, an 800-hectare wetland sanctuary managed by the Royal Botanical Gardens (RBG), at the western end […]

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Coalition fights off construction

Coalition fights off construction

By Brian Banks Paul Renaud sighs as he describes the current situation in the South March Highlands, 895 hectares of ecologically and culturally significant forest and wetlands within Ottawa’s city limits that he and a coalition of community groups are fighting to protect. “Subdivisions,” he observes, “follow roads.”

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On guard for the moraine

On guard for the moraine

By Caroline Schultz Formed 11, 000 years ago by retreating glaciers, and stretching 160 kilometres end to end, the Oak Ridges Moraine is one of southern Ontario’s most distinctive physical features. Before European settlement, the moraine’s rolling hills were blanketed by forests and punctuated by kettle lakes and streams. Expanses of tallgrass prairie and savannah […]

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The case of the blue butterfly

The case of the blue butterfly

The disappearance of the exquisite Karner blue butterfly signalled significant declines in Ontario’s rare oak savannah habitat. Undaunted, some naturalists believe the brilliantly coloured insect can still make a comeback. By Peter Christie

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Shelly Candel, Nature Guardians Sponsor

Shelly Candel, Nature Guardians Sponsor

Ontario Nature deeply appreciates Shelly Candel’s generous support of Ontario Nature’s Nature Guardians program. We asked Shelly to tell us why this program is important to her. The Nature Guardians are my hope for the future. I love the outdoors – feeling the fresh air, the sun and the wind. I love hearing songbirds and […]

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The renegade

The renegade

Unabashed tree lover Diana Beresford-Kroeger declares that forests hold the key to combating climate change and curing a multitude of ailments including cancer. By Conor Mihell

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Conservation takes teamwork

Conservation takes teamwork

By Amber Cowie In the countdown to the provincial election, the Green Prosperity Initiative, a coalition of 21 environmental organizations including Ontario Nature, released seven green priorities that the coalition believes are the most important provincial environmental concerns in 2011 (see “Seeing green,” Spring 2011, page 8).

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Birds on the farm

Birds on the farm

Conservationists and cattlemen join forces to save a rare species. By Ron Reid Grassland birds across North America are in big trouble, none more than the bobolink, whose rollicking songs once graced hayfields and pasture lands across southern Ontario. Since 1968, Ontario’s bobolink populations have plummeted by two-thirds (see “Songs of the bobolink,” Summer 2010), […]

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The gene pool

The gene pool

Sharon Oosthoek A tiny water flea possessing more genes than you or I has the potential to be a highly sensitive and inexpensive pollution detector, say scientists who recently sequenced its genome.

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Turtle hunting

Turtle hunting

By John Urquhart With its large shell – up to 47 centimetres in length – and the series of triangular spikes lining its tail, the snapping turtle looks prehistoric, and it is. Sadly, Ontario’s biggest and longest-lived turtle – estimates based on size and growth rates suggest snapping turtles could live to be over 150 […]

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Summer 2011

Summer 2011

Conservation politics and a treasured landscape. By Caroline Schultz A win for wildlife: The Bruce Trail Conservancy secures more of the Niagara Escarpment; the great outdoors: having a field day with conservation staff; we object: the Province allows hunting at-risk snapping turtles; pleased to meet you: Chris Rathgeber, treasurer for Ontario Nature’s Board of Directors. […]

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Meet our board: Chris Rathgeber

Meet our board: Chris Rathgeber

Chris Rathgeber is the secretary/treasurer of Ontario Nature’s board of directors and the chief operating officer of Memofix Hitech Services.   John Hassell How did you first become involved with Ontario Nature? Chris Rathgeber My wife, who was familiar with the organization from her work in the nonprofit sector, introduced me to Ontario Nature in […]

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Where the wildlife is

Where the wildlife is

From rugged coastlines to old-growth forests to orchid-carpeted swamplands, Ontario Nature’s reserves protect the province’s most imperilled wild spaces. By Brian Banks

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Showdown on the Oak Ridges Moraine

Showdown on the Oak Ridges Moraine

On the 10-year anniversary of the protection plan for one of southern Ontario’s most treasured landscapes, Ontario Nature and fellow environmentalists concede that the fight for the moraine is not over yet. By Peter Gorrie

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A great deal

A great deal

By John Hassell Congratulations to our partner organization, the Bruce Trail Conservancy (BTC), for raising $1 million to secure an additional 114 hectares of Malcolm Bluff Shores, a spectacular 423-hectare (1,045- acre) area on the Niagara Escarpment, north of Owen Sound. Together, Ontario Nature and BTC have raised the funds needed to permanently protect 346 […]

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Having a field day

Having a field day

By John Urquhart Ontario Nature’s conservation staff is back in the field! We are continuing our research on reptiles and amphibians as we work toward the completion of the Ontario Reptile and Amphibian Atlas. One of the unique aspects of the atlas is the opportunity it provides for citizen scientists. Anyone can contribute valuable data […]

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