Happy World Ranger Day!

Ontario Parks staff tackle a huge array of tasks and challenges.

Our days are diverse. You might find us researching rare species, applying First Aid to injured guests, maintaining safe and healthy water systems, building a boardwalk, or welcoming families to a busy campground.

We’re stewards of our province’s most treasured natural resources. We’re educators, instilling a love of nature in new generations of Ontarians.

Internationally, World Ranger Day celebrates their wonderful work protecting our parks, and commemorates park rangers killed or injured in the line of duty in park organizations with high-risk activities.

We’re proud to keep our parks safe and welcoming to visitors, while protecting our amazing natural world.

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How to plan your visit to Presqu’ile

Located on Lake Ontario in Brighton, Presqu’ile Provincial Park is one of our most popular parks in Southeastern Ontario, welcoming thousands of visitors every month.

From the long, sandy beach to beautiful hiking trails to world-class bird migrations, Presqu’ile is a favourite for many.

During the hot summer months, the park can get extremely busy. Presqu’ile often hits capacity — especially on weekends — and can’t welcome any more visitors.

This year, you need to book your day use permit in advance to guarantee entry.

We really hate to turn away visitors, especially knowing many have driven several hours to get here.

Planning a day-trip to Presqu’ile? Here’s what you need to know to have a fun and frustration-free visit:

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How to plan your day-trip to Bon Echo

Bon Echo Provincial Park has long been a favorite destination for day-trippers, and this year is no exception!

However, there is a capacity to how many day-visitors the park can accommodate.

Planning a day-trip to Bon Echo? Check out our top tips for a fun and frustration-free visit:

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The curious Conopholis plant

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?

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The dragonfly hunter

Sonje Bols is an interpreter and naturalist with Ontario Parks, and coordinates the Discovery Drop-in program at a number of parks in Northeastern Ontario. She loves dragonflies: watching them, catching and identifying their species, and pretty much everything else about them.

As soon as it’s warm enough to be outside in a t-shirt and shorts, chances are you’ll find me out “odeing.”

Odeing? Is that a typo?

The root of the word – ode – is the short form many naturalists use for Odonate, the scientific family name for a group of insects made up of dragonflies and damselflies.

To go “odeing” is to venture outside to catch and identify these insects.

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Nature is calling – are you listening?

When’s the last time you really appreciated your surroundings?

This summer has flown by. It’s been difficult to make time to get outside and experience the rejuvenating effects of nature.

Luckily, Healthy Parks Healthy People’s 30×30 Challenge happens every August! It’s a month-long opportunity for you to get outside into nature for 30 minutes for 30 days in a row.

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Hitting the MOTHerlode at Rondeau

Today’s post comes Kevin Gevaert, senior Discovery staff at Rondeau Provincial Park

Not too many people are fond of the idea of staying in the forest when it gets dark.

It might sound sound discouraging or even scary to most, but experiencing Rondeau Provincial Park’s forest at night is something you won’t soon forget!

The billions of stars in the night sky, the sound of owls hooting, coyotes howling in the distance, and the odd mosquitos buzzing are all part of the magic that makes nighttime here at Rondeau so special.

Things really start to appear when we shine a bit of light on the subject!

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The not-too-alike lookalikes: the Massasauga Rattlesnake and the Northern Watersnake

Today’s post comes from the Discovery Program staff at Killbear Provincial Park.

Snakes: some people love them, some people don’t.

However you feel about them, they are an important part of our ecosystems, and you may see one when you visit us.

Here at Killbear, we get a lot of questions about snakes, and especially the difference between watersnakes and rattlesnakes as they are often confused for each other.

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How to successfully camp in the rain

Is the forecast looking a little rainy for your upcoming camping trip?

Don’t let it bring you down! Some of the best memories happen on the rainiest days.

All you need are a few tips and tricks to ensure you’re prepared for inclement weather. Keep these tips in mind even if the forecast calls for sunny skies!

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