As the crisp fall days get colder and the occasional dusting of snow whitens the landscape, we know that winter is just around the corner. For the countless songbirds of our forests, they avoid our cold winters and lack of food by migrating south. Other animals are adapted to the cold conditions and may grow a thicker coat of fur or feathers. Some, we think, have the enviable ability to sleep away the long Ontario winter by hibernating.
It’s not just students and birds on the move this fall.
As the cold weather approaches, reptiles are trekking across Rondeau Provincial Park in search of hibernacula (places in which wildlife overwinter). Researchers for Wildlife Preservation Canada are busy tracking the movements of snakes, turtles, and skinks within the park as they find suitable habitat for their hibernation.
In today’s post, Brad Steinberg, our Natural Heritage Education & Learning Coordinator, shares the story of how he (kinda) proposed to a Blanding’s turtle.
It was September 30, the last day of trout season in Algonquin Provincial Park. I was trudging out a portage with a canoe over my head when I saw it: a big, beautiful Blanding’s turtle, perched right on the edge of the old roadway.
While you’re cuddled up on the couch with your favourite book and a big cup of hot chocolate, have you ever wondered where our eight-legged friends spend the cold winter months? Well, I’ve got the answers to your winter-time ponderings.