Squirrels for sale: the incredible history of squirrels at Rondeau

Today’s post is by Jess Matthews, the chief park naturalist at Rondeau Provincial Park.

One hundred years ago, there was a lot we didn’t know about managing parks.

The idea of maintaining ecological integrity is relatively new. Ontario’s first parks were primarily established for recreation and tourism.

During the first half of the 20th century, wildlife was often seen as a tourist attraction or a nuisance. There was little understanding of how animal diseases spread, or how local populations were adapted to the places they lived.

Because park managers didn’t know about any of this, some animals found themselves packed up and shipped off far from their homes.

This is the story of squirrels from Rondeau Provincial Park that, due to their fashionable coats, traveled as far as the White House lawn.

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Fall warbler migration at Rondeau Provincial Park

Today’s post comes from Laura Penner, a Discovery Program Group Leader at Rondeau Provincial Park.

Thousands of birdwatchers flock to Rondeau each spring to take part in one of natures most spectacular events, the annual songbird migration.

The male warblers, in their attempt to attract mates, are in their finest plumage with bold patterns and bright colours. Their unique songs fill the air! Beginner birders focus on the bird’s appearance to identify it. For more advanced birders, the songs may help identify birds that aren’t out in the open putting on a show.

But for those who are ready to take their warbler identification skills to the next level, there is the fall migration!

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Campsite vacancy highlights: October 8-11

Gather friends and family around the picnic table this year and spend the long weekend out in nature surrounded by beautiful fall colours!

Scout out your ideal campsite on our reservation service (including pictures of most campsites!), or check out these featured campsites (available as of 3:00 p.m. on October 6, 2021):

Continue reading Campsite vacancy highlights: October 8-11

Perfect parks for your late fall camping trip

Looking to extend your camping season?

Many of our parks are open for overnight stays in October and November. Whether you snuggle up in your tent or get cozy in your RV, make sure you pack extra socks!

Bundle up and book a trip to one of these late fall camping spots:

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Campsite vacancy highlights: October 1-3

With beautiful weather and stunning fall colours on the way, there couldn’t be a better weekend to enjoy fall in a provincial park.

Plenty of RV-friendly electrical sites are available around the province! Why not try somewhere new?

Scout out your ideal campsite on our reservation service (including pictures of most campsites!), or check out these featured campsites (available as of 3:00 p.m. on September 29, 2021): Continue reading Campsite vacancy highlights: October 1-3

Fall hiking gems in Ontario’s southwest

When it comes to fall, Ontario’s southwest can be overlooked.

While crowds of people flock to Algonquin Provincial Park or the Niagara Escarpment, there are many places elsewhere in the province that showcase the beauty of Ontario’s changing colours.

What better way to see the colours than by tackling a trail? Here are just a few of our best-kept secrets in southwestern Ontario:

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Slithering into fall: hibernation for Ontario’s reptiles

Today’s post was written by seasonal student Heather Van Den Diepstraten from Rondeau Provincial Park.

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.

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Campsite vacancy highlights: September 24-26

Well WATT do you know? We have electrical sites available across the province!

No matter where you go, you’ll find a hook up waiting for you, including at a few roofed accommodations!

Scout out your ideal campsite on our reservation service (including pictures of most campsites!), or check out these featured campsites (available as of noon on September 23, 2021):

Continue reading Campsite vacancy highlights: September 24-26

Accessible locations to view fall colours

As the cold weather hits, opportunities to view a stunning array of fall colours are popping up around the province.

Ontario Parks is committed to making our parks as accessible as possible for visitors. If you’re planning a trip, we’ve rounded up a list of parks with accessibility features that are perfect for viewing the beauty of fall.

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