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Walks & Talks

OUR WALKS are led by specialists or well schooled naturalists, and provide a good way to expand your knowledge of local natural history as well as to mingle with members of the natural history community.

Deep Cove Nature Reserve
Brad Armstrong and Doug van Hemessen led HFN participants into the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Deep Cove Nature Reserve on Oct 24, 2015.
Click on photo for larger version

We usually have one or more walks a month throughout the year. It may be possible for the contact person (who may or may not be the same as the trip leader) to organize a ride for an event outside the city. If this is possible, a contribution towards the fuel costs would be appropriate. All participants in HFN activities are responsible for their own safety. Always wear suitable clothing and footwear for the weather, the activity, and the terrain. If in doubt, call the contact person listed for each field trip.

OUR TALKS are given by both experts and interested amateurs – one every month except during the summer. They provide an opportunity to learn what local scientists, volunteers, and HFN members are up to. Regular meetings with talks are held on the first Thursday of every month except July and August at 7:30 PM in the auditorium of the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History, 1747 Summer Street, Halifax. Meetings are open to the public. Use the entrance next to the parking lot. There is a charge for parking at the Museum; usually, two hours will be adequate.

AN EVENING STROLL IN THE HALIFAX PUBLIC GARDENS TUES, AUGUST 1st
Join seasoned gardener Sheldon Harper (some of you may remember Sheldon’s excellent tour for HFN over 20 years ago) as he wanders and narrates the tree lined curved paths of mature trees, shrub beds, extensive floral displays of annuals, perennials, roses, dahlias, ferns, tropicals, succulents, and even cactus. As well we’ll hear historical facts on statuary and gates. Have your gardening questions ready for Sheldon! Limited to 20 participants; registration is required.
Rain date:  Wed August 2
Contact: Carol Klar  cklar@bellaliant.net  Phone 443 3385
Time/Place  6pm @ the Main Gates corner of South Park St. and Spring Garden Rd.
Duration: 1.5 to 2 hours until closing
Difficulty: Easy

COLD CRITTERS: HOW INSECTS SURVIVE THE WINTER! THURS, SEPTEMBER 7th
Surviving Canadian winters is hard enough with indoor heating – but for many creatures, like insects, cold temperatures mean cold bodies.  So, when it’s -20 C, how can these animals possibly survive this reading on the thermometer? Dr. Laura Ferguson will walk us through how insects survive the winter, from creating their own antifreezes to “re-animation” from a frozen state. Join us to learn more about how your favourite six-legged critters manage to keep coming back, spring after spring! 7:30 pm at the NSMNH

150 BIOBLITZ SAT, SEPTEMBER 16th  
In conjunction with the Ecology Action Centre & the Canadian Wildlife Federation, please join us for Bioblitz Canada 150! A BioBlitz is an effort to record all living species within a designated area over a short time period. We will meet at 9:00am on Saturday, Sept. 16th in the parking lot (off Tower Road) to help identify and inventory the flora and fauna in Halifax’s own Point Pleasant Park. No need to be an expert, there will opportunities for people with all backgrounds to participate. This is a great opportunity to become a “citizen scientist” and work alongside conservationists and specialists in a national inventory of Canadian Species! Registration required!
Rain Date: none.
Contact: Bethany Nordstrom, (506) 260-1197, bethany.nordstrom@dal.ca
Time/Place: 9:00 am to 3:00pm- Point Pleasant Park (Meet in parking lot off Tower Road) 
Difficulty: Easy to moderate.
Duration: An all-day event (you don’t have to stay for the whole day)

SHUBENACADIE WILDLIFE PARK SUNSET TOUR SAT, SEPTEMBER 23rd
Dusk is a busy time of day for Nova Scotia’s wildlife, particularly in autumn when the sun sets early and they need to gather food and find warm shelter to prepare for the long winter. Come get an up-close view of over 50 species of animals and birds. The beautiful Shubenacadie Wildlife Park has been a refuge for animals for over 60 years, operated by the Department of Natural Resources. An experienced Nature Interpreter will take you on a tour through the park sharing lots of “wild” facts and answering all of your questions. Bring your camera, a flashlight, and dress for the weather with comfortable walking shoes. Registration Required: A minimum of 10 participants is required or the walk will be cancelled.  Shubie Wildlife Park is charging a fee of $10 per person for 10 participants and the price will go down the more participants there are.
Rain Date: none.
Contact: Denyse Contrasty, 902-478-1706, dcontrasty@yahoo.com
Time/Place: 7:30pm to 9pm. Carpooling will be organized to leave from Halifax.
Difficulty: Easy to moderate.
Duration: 1.5 hours