Snapping Turtles

Today’s post comes from David LeGros, a Natural Heritage Education Specialist at Algonquin Provincial Park.

I spent most of my youth in rubber boots and obsessed with nature. I was always looking for interesting animals and plants.

There are a few creatures then, just like now, that always inspire me.

Top of my list: the Snapping Turtle.

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Why driftwood matters

Today’s post comes from Laura Myers, Senior Park Interpreter of Neys Provincial Park.

Driftwood – it makes a great bench to watch the sunset, a balancing beam to play on, or that perfect element to your photograph.

There’s something about driftwood that gives beaches that rugged beauty factor. Walking on a beach, listening to the waves and the birds, and looking at the different pieces of driftwood can be wondrous and relaxing.

Has a piece of driftwood ever caught your eye and made you wonder where it originally came from? How it got that far up the beach? The size of the wave that put it there? What species of tree or how old it is?

Each piece of driftwood has its own journey and its own story. But its story isn’t over when it washes up on the beach.

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Summer bioblitzes at Algonquin

In honour of our 125th anniversary, our oldest provincial park, Algonquin, is hosting a bioblitz series!

Join park naturalists for weekly programs where you will learn how to identify and inventory different species, as well as the importance of citizen science in protecting the biodiversity of our parks.

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Howling with the wolves at Bonnechere Provincial Park

Today’s post comes to us from MacKenzie Schmidt, Discovery Program Coordinator for our Algonquin Zone.

For centuries, wolves have captured our imagination and wonder. Tolstoy wrote about them, biologists have studied them in earnest, and campers staying at Ontario Parks have had the opportunity to howl to them during public wolf howls since the 1960s.

In fact, the very first public wolf howl at Algonquin Provincial Park (1963) represents some of our earliest educational programming that is paramount to Ontario Parks’ mission today.

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The dazzling tigers at Charleston Lake

Today’s post comes to us from Chris Robinson, Natural Heritage Education Leader at Charleston Lake Provincial Park.

This is a vibrant, colourful time of year at Charleston Lake Provincial Park, with lasting sunshine and seemingly endless days. June and July are also when butterfly watching is at its best!

Some of the park’s most showy butterflies are the tiger swallowtails, known for their large size, distinctive colours and streamer-like “tails” on their hindwings.

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Calling all citizen scientists: come to the Killarney Butterfly Count

For the 20th year in a row, Killarney Provincial Park is hosting its Annual Butterfly Count.

And if you’re heading to Killarney on July 14, 2018, we’d like your help!

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Guess how many bee species call Ontario home?

When we think of bees, we often picture Honey Bees. We imagine a swarm buzzing around a honeycomb hive.

But the Honey Bee is just one of 400 different types of bees in Ontario (and we’re discovering new bee species all the time!).

And Honey Bees aren’t even a native species.

In fact, Honey Bees are relatively new to Ontario. They were an agricultural import, brought to North America for honey production and crop pollination. Before Honey Bees crossed the ocean, Ontario’s major pollinators were native bees, whose behaviour is often very different from the stereotypical honey bees.

Here are five other types of bees buzzing around our parks:

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