Today’s post comes from Indigenous Project Relations Intern Adam Solomon and Discovery Program Leader Kenton Otterbein at Killbear Provincial Park. Adam is a member of Henvey Inlet First Nation.
Seeing a Massasauga Rattlesnake (“Zhiishiigweg“ in Anishinaabemowin) can provoke a variety of emotions ranging from fear to fascination.
Unfortunately, fear caused by misinformation exaggerating the danger of rattlesnake bites has caused many to kill rattlesnakes over the past 200 years of European settlement in this province.
The Anishinaabek have a different worldview of the Massasauga Rattlesnake.
Continue reading Living with Zhiishiigweg (Massasauga Rattlesnake): an Anishinaabek perspective
Today’s post comes from Shane Smits, senior park interpreter at Rondeau Provincial Park.
Are you terrified of snakes?
Do you believe they’re all large and frightening?
Well, everyone has a right to their own fears, but what if snakes aren’t all what the movies make them out to be?
It’s a common misconception that snakes are big and scary creatures. In reality, there are many species that are actually quite small and rather harmless.
Let’s discuss a few of Ontario’s smallest snake species, so we can hopefully change some opinions on snakes:
Continue reading Ontario’s smallest snakes
You might think that snakes are creatures of the night, slithering around in the dark, looking for prey and striking when they find it.
But you’d be wrong. Most of our snakes are active during the day, though the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake, Milksnake and Ring-necked Snake do come out at night.
Continue reading 8 cool facts about snakes
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.
Continue reading Slithering into fall: hibernation for Ontario’s reptiles
We often hear our visitors say how much they fear or hate snakes.
Ophidiophobia, the name for an intense fear of snakes, is certainly a legitimate condition, and we do not judge anyone who struggles with it.
Many of our own staff are working through this fear. No one chooses to have a phobia. The outdoors should be a place for relaxation and rejuvenation, not the constant fear of a chance encounter with a native species.
Continue reading Why are snakes so misunderstood?
Well… it had to happen eventually!
Ontario Parks’ longest serving employee has retired after working 62 years at Killbear Provincial Park.
Eddie started working at the park in 1959 and helped to build the roads and campgrounds before the park officially opened in 1960.
After a full career training countless staff and keeping the maintenance department ticking, Eddie decided to hang up his chainsaw for good last summer.
Hats off to Eddie and we wish him a long and healthy retirement!
When most people think of a career, they might think of working 30, 35, or perhaps even 40 years before enjoying a well-earned retirement.
Eddie Ramsay doesn’t subscribe to that point of view.
Continue reading The remarkable 62-year career of Eddie Ramsay
Today’s post comes from Megan Loucks, Discovery Lead at Pinery Provincial Park.
If you explore Pinery’s Old Ausable Channel, you might see a variety of fish swimming, water lilies floating in the sun, or even a beaver ducking into its lodge.
However, we have recently received reports of a large reptilian creature swimming just below the surface.
Continue reading Pinery’s Loch Ness Monster
Today’s post comes from Megan and Cora, two of Halfway Lake Provincial Park‘s discovery guides.
As discovery guides, part of our job is inspiring, encouraging, and motivating visitor to explore and discover nature everywhere!
Continue reading Hiking through Halfway Lake, discovery-style