Uncovering the “birdiest” trail at Pinery

Today’s post comes from Habitat Stewardship Technician Justin Johnson from Pinery Provincial Park. Justin has a M.Sc. in biology with a focus on bird acoustics. 

Birders are an interesting breed of people. Sometimes everything they do seems to subvert the norms of society.

Sleeping in? Rather not. Too much coffee? No such thing. $4500 binoculars? Yeah, I’ve seen it.

Birders’ bread and butter is local natural spaces and their trails. They can be very particular about which trails they walk. Seasoned birders often only use trails they perceive as “birdy,” neglecting those off their sacred path.

But how do we really know which trails are the “birdiest?”

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Add nature to your self-care toolkit

As the days get shorter and the colder weather arrives, it’s time to talk self-care.  Bubble baths and meditation are great options, but have you considered adding nature to your self-care toolkit?

October 10 is World Mental Health Day, and it’s the perfect time to think of ways we can take care of ourselves and our families.

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4 top tips for fall hiking adventures

Fall is our favourite hiking season.

It’s not too hot. The bugs are gone. Solitude is easier to find.

But fall hiking has its own complications, especially when it comes to weather.

Before heading out, check out this handy fall hiking checklist:

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Fascinating fall fungi at Frontenac

`From yeast fungi (responsible for leavening bread) to mold (we’ve all forgotten about food for just a little too long), the world of fungi is a large and fascinating one.

But the role fungi play in our natural environment is perhaps one of the most important roles of all.

Have you ever wondered how old tree stumps break down and are slowly reclaimed by the forest floor? Or how plants are able to obtain water and nutrients essential for their survival?

The answer is fungi.

Fungi are the powerhouses of forest ecosystems. They are the best wood decomposers found in the natural environment and form relationships with nearly 90% of the world’s land plants

At Frontenac Provincial Park, over 700 species of fungi have been identified in our forests.

Let’s find out some interesting facts about a handful of them:

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Improving access to Twin Points Trail at Killbear

Tucked away in a corner of Killbear Provincial Park is a special spot: the Twin Points Trail.

With windswept pines, rugged rocks, and a plethora of wildlife, this is the perfect place to fully absorb the beauty of Georgian Bay.

This natural gem has captured the hearts of many, including one special nature-lover: Teresa Daw.

She made a lasting contribution to help more people access the trail than ever before.

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How to plan your day trip to Forks of the Credit

Forks of the Credit Provincial Park is a beautiful park west of Toronto. It offers excellent hiking, picnicking, and fishing opportunities, as well as cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in winter.

But the secret is out on this hiking destination located close to home! Forks of the Credit can experience large crowds of visitors, especially on summer weekends.

As the park’s popularity has grown, so has our need for visitors to put extra thought into being respectful. Visitors should plan ahead to avoid large crowds, potential fines, or being turned away at the park gate.

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Bike and hike the Giant

In today’s post, Discovery Leader Rachelle Law answers a common question: “How do I get to the top of Sleeping Giant?”

Hiking up the Sleeping Giant and some of the tallest cliffs in Ontario can be quite the challenge, but the experience and the views are the ultimate reward.

One of the most commonly asked questions at Sleeping Giant Provincial Park is: “How do I get to the top of the Giant?”

Most are surprised to hear the three different hiking trails that go up the Sleeping Giant are long and rated difficult. But it’s no reason to be discouraged, as navigating to the Giant is also possible, in part, by bike!

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Healing in the forest: a guide to forest bathing

Let’s take a walk in the woods.

With no specific destination in mind, we will wander, observe and immerse ourselves in nature. Allow our senses to guide us.

When was the last time you walked into the woods with no plans? No final destination? Without a species to ID, hill to climb, or lookout to conquer?

This is exactly the experience offered by a forest bathing session.

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