Connecting Lake Simcoe's Community

Unique Birds on the Carden Alvar

Bird watchers and seasoned birders joined us at the Nature Centre on a recent Sunday morning to observe and learn about the rare and endangered bird species that make the Carden Alvar their home.

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Dendrology - 2 Weeks Later

Dendrology: The science and study of woody plants, specifically trees and shrubs.

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Winter Dendrology: The Study of Trees

Most of us learned about trees in elementary school. We learned how to identify them mainly by the shape of their leaves and on occasion, some teachers would talk about the bark of the tree. Recently, we had an in-field workshop, led by Bob Bowles. Bob taught us there are many other ways to identify trees, especially this time of year before leaf out.

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Spring has Sprung

Happy Spring, everyone!

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Mammal Tracking - The Eye of a Detective

Diagonal walkers, pacers or waddlers, bounders and gallopers; these are just some of the new terms we learned at our Mammal Tracking workshop last Saturday, Feb. 26. Bob Bowles led a group of outdoor enthusiasts on an expedition into the wetlands at the Robert L. Bowles Nature Centre, where so many mammals make the area their winter home. The wetland is protected and shielded from a good deal of adverse weather and also predators. With everything frozen over, we were able to hike into the heart of the wetland.

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The wonder of the Wolf Moon

Once a month, or more specifically every 29.5 days, we have a full moon.

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24th Carden Alvar Christmas Bird Count

We started our bird and mammal count at the nature centre just after the sun rose on Monday, Jan. 3. It was certainly a very chilly start with the temperature registering -15 Celsius. But as the day went on it brought some wonders — well worth being outdoors and participating in this very important activity.

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Holidays - A magical time for gratefulness

"There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle." Albert Einstein

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Massive and majestic moose

We just had to write about the massive and majestic Moose (Alces alces) after capturing this great photo with our game camera of a bull moose in our wetland area at the Nature Centre.

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It is time to empower young people

Our previous three blogs were about wetlands and their significant role in keeping our environment healthy and combating climate change. Our children and young adults are the next generation that will experience the devastating effects of global warming if action is not taken now.

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So many creatures in Ontario's Wetlands — and we put them at risk

King rails (Rallus elegans), frogs (Lithobates), salamanders (Ambystoma), spotted turtles (Clemmys Guttata) and seven other turtle species, Eastern foxsnake (Pantherophis gloydi) and nine other snake species and fairy shrimp (Anostraca) — all are species at risk, threatened, endangered or of special concern in Ontario that dwell in Wetlands.

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Wetlands and Climate Change

Last week we talked about the importance of wetlands and listed five to 10 benefits of protecting and restoring our wetlands.

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Wetlands help keep us and the environment healthy

We have all heard of wetlands but do we really know their significance and importance to the health of our environment?

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Thankful for the trees and colours

Our 'Giving Thanks For a Rainbow of Colour (and Mushrooms)' workshop, held over Thanksgiving weekend, was a success even though it rained and was overcast during most of Bob's presentation. Our participants wanted the show to go on, so large patio style umbrellas were put up to keep us dry. Jim and Donna, participants of all of Bob's workshops brought them and their act of kindness saved the day.

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Tis the season — for mushrooms

Some would think Tis the Season with the activity that is happening currently on social media. So much excitement and enthusiasm going on with many who are talking and sharing photographs of their latest find — you guessed it, mushrooms.

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Sunflowers - A vision of gratitude

Those beautiful, tall, (sometimes) yellow flower heads facing the sun. You can't help but smile and acknowledge their beauty when you see them in a field or in a garden.

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The butterfly journey continues

2021 09 14 butterfly4We wrote at the beginning of September about the migration of the Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) to Mexico.

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Don't spread this new invasive aquatic plant!

2021 08 28 bowles frogbit2
2021 08 28 bowles frogbit1

By Bob Bowles -- Several hours spent monitoring lakes, rivers and creeks in North Simcoe has made me realize roadside ditches, creeks and small streams are being choked out by a new invasive aquatic plant native to Europe.

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The elegant trumpeter swan

2021 08 22 naturecentre Tswans

The majestic trumpeter swan can have a wingspan up to three meters and weigh between seven and 13 kilograms making these the heaviest, native waterfowl in Ontario. They were near extinction during the 1980s-1990s but with aggressive conservation efforts, this graceful bird has rebounded.

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The Life of Monty, the Monarch butterfly

2021 08 07 monarch

We watched as "Monty" the Monarch butterfly took his first flight last Saturday, July 31, at our workshop "Monarch Butterfly Birthday — A Celebration" led by wildlife biologist Ryan Lamoureux

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