Today’s post comes from Maddie Bray, a naturalist at Awenda Provincial Park.
As park naturalists, we get asked all sorts of questions about various organisms that live within the park. Campers will describe the call of a bird they didn’t quite see or the colouring of an insect that was just too quick to photograph.
One of these questions in particular always seems to come up in the summertime – what are those pale yellow things sticking up out of the ground?
Continue reading The curious Conopholis plant
Our “Forever protected” series shares why each and every one belongs in Ontario Parks. In today’s post, Biologist Lauren Trute tells us Westmeath’s story.
Westmeath Provincial Park, located approximately 15 km from the City of Pembroke, is one of the most ecologically diverse provincial parks in Renfrew County.
This 610 ha park sits on the shore of the mighty Ottawa River, and offers a glimpse into the glacial history of the Ottawa Valley. This site was also likely an important stopover area for Indigenous peoples and fur traders travelling along the waterway.
Continue reading Forever protected: why Westmeath belongs
Our “Forever protected” series shares why each and every park belongs in Ontario Parks. In today’s post, Social Media Specialist Alexander Renaud tells us Mark S. Burnham’s story.
For almost two centuries — as the area around Mark S. Burnham Provincial Park turned from wilderness to farm fields, and eventually, to a bustling city — the trees within its boundaries have remained relatively untouched.
This lack of development is a rare phenomenon in southern Ontario. The ecosystem within has been able to thrive and provide habitat for a variety of species, becoming one of the best-preserved old-growth forests in the county.
For these reasons, Mark S. Burnham belongs. Continue reading Forever protected: why Mark S. Burnham belongs
When you hear the name “orchid,” you may automatically think of some bizarre or fantastically coloured flower from some remote and steamy tropical jungle.
But not all orchids hail from tropic climes.
If you’ve taken a hike in the woods in many of our provincial parks you’ve probably seen some native orchids.
Continue reading Orchids of the north: the life of the Pink Lady’s Slipper
Preserving ecological integrity is a priority for all of us here at Ontario Parks. But just what does ecological integrity look like? Algonquin Provincial Park Naturalist David LeGros explains…
When I start many of my evening programs at Algonquin, I often ask the audience if they like nature.
Usually I get a lot of hands up in the air, but there are always a few that don’t put their hands up. I tell those people, “You might be in the wrong place, because Algonquin is crawling with nature.” I know these folks may have not been paying attention to what I was saying or chose not to participate in my survey, but it always gets a laugh from the crowd.
However, this did get me thinking about why we go to parks over staying home or visiting a big city…
Continue reading How will I know ecological integrity when I see it?
Today’s post comes to us from Naturalist Yvette Bree of Sandbanks Provincial Park.
Many visitors to Sandbanks may remember 2017 as the year of high water levels. Along with many other lakes, Lake Ontario reached record highs in the spring and early summer, resulting in widespread flooding.
As a result, it definitely wasn’t “business as usual.”
Continue reading What a difference a year makes!