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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What’s with all the caterpillars?

You arrive at your campsite on a beautiful spring weekend for some early-season camping and begin to set up your site. You’ve already noticed that the trees on the way to the park look a bit thin, like they do at the beginning of spring.

Then one of the kids notices that one of the trees has a big clump of blackish stuff that’s moving…

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Pecking away at Presqu’ile: High Bluff and Gull Island bird colonies

This post was written by David Bree, Natural Heritage Education Leader at Presqu’ile Provincial Park.

While Presqu’ile is not the busiest park in Ontario, it can get quite hectic at times in the summer. However, I am pretty sure most people could not guess where the busiest place in the park is.

It is not the Friday line-up to register your campsite, or the beach on a sunny Sunday in July. It is not even the line-up for ice cream at the park store on a hot summer day.

It is a place most campers never go…

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Hitting the trail at Esker Lakes

This post is written by Dave Sproule, Natural Heritage Education Specialist with Ontario Parks.

If you are looking for a new trail to explore this summer, the Lonesome Bog Trail at Esker Lakes Provincial Park might be just the ticket! This 1.5 km interpretive trail sweeps around Sausage Lake and travels through a variety of habitats, introducing visitors to boreal forest ecosystems and ancient glacial landscapes.

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