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Kick-off for Hike the Greenbelt Sat July 18, 2015

“Join us for a celebratory send-off in Point Pleasant Park to start the Hike the Greenbelt Project! Pack a lunch and kayak with us to McNabs Island to join the Friends of McNabs annual picnic, with guided tours, children’s activities, and musical acts!” Details.

Events continue until Aug. 16th. You can sign up for any event. Check it out: The goal is to get out as many people, from as many walks of life, as possible. Here’s the map:Hike the Greenbelt

Nature Writing Class at SMU

The Writer and Nature
English 2318.1 — Saint Mary’s University, Halifax
Fridays – 10:00-12:30
Sept.-Dec. 2015
Instructor: Brian Bartlett
You can drive out nature with a pitch fork
but it always comes roaring back again – Tom Waits
This course is centered on “nature writing” in the U.S. and Britain over the past two centuries. Read more »

Two of HFN Founders still at it

Two of the HFN founders, Paul and Cathy Keddy, are featured in “Gifted, Naturally”, an article in the July issue of Ottawa Magazine. The article by Moira Farr, well illustrated with colour photos by By David Tratiles, describes how Paul and Cathy “spent decades buying up Iand in Lamark County. Then they gave it all away.” View HFN History | View Ottawa Magazine (The Ottawa Magazine tells me that an electronic version will be available on the web in the next weeks – I will post a link to it when it is… – David P)

Wed July 15, 2015: Shark Night

Twenty-eight species of shark have been reported across Canada’s Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic oceans. Close to half of them are threatened, but still many Canadians don’t know that sharks are at home in our waters. Attend a keynote presentation by Dr. Nigel Hussey (University of Windsor), an expert on the mysterious Greenland shark. Wednesday, July 15, 2015 7:00 – 10:00 pm at Potter Auditorium, Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Ave, Halifax, Nova Scotia. Please RSVP by Monday, July 13, 2015 to Chris Chaplin
416-669-9155 or

Nova Scotia Nature Writing and Art Contest for Youth

NatureArtWritingPoster1000 Nature Nova Scotia, the Young Naturalists Club of Nova Scotia and the Wildland Writers are sponsoring a Nature Writing and Art Contest for Nova Scotian youth ages 8 – 15 years. Submissions may be a written piece (shortstory, non fiction, poetry ,etc.) OR an original artwork (painting, drawing, collage, etc.) that is inspired by:

  • native plants or animals of Nova Scotia (native means a species that occurs naturally in a region)
  • an adventure, personal moment, or happy experience in Nova Scotia’s wild places (lake, river, ocean, forest, trail)
  • an injustice that impacts nature in Nova Scotia
  • Entries must be submitted by October 31, 2015. View Rules and Poster for more details.

    Calling all Naturalists! Biota Survey at Otter Pond Demo. Forest June 27

    Calling all Naturalists! Biota Survey at Otter Pond Demo. Forest June 27
    “Please join us for a day in the woods at Otter Ponds Demonstration Forest. A biota survey will take place on Saturday June 27th – and we’d like your help! The site is located roughly an hour and a half from Halifax, near the community of Mooseland, in the interior of the Eastern Shore.

    “Our goal is to increase our knowledge about the property’s flora and fauna. Naturalists with various interests are invited to participate. Please bring along field guides, GPS, binoculars, sturdy waterproof footwear, snacks, water, and insect repellent. The survey will take place throughout the day. We intend to focus on four areas of interest: hardwood drumlins, softwood lowlands, wetlands, and a core area of old forest that hasn’t been harvested since the late 1800’s. Read more »

    100 Islands Celebration

    At the NS Nature Trust 2015 Conservation Showcase held at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic on June 18, 2015, NS Nature Trust personnel said that their 7M$ project to protect private lands in the 100 islands Campaign is now almost 90% funded and that they have protected more than 5000 acres. Minister of Environment, Randy Delorey announced that the Province has now legally protected the Eastern Shore Islands Wilderness Area which is 4600 acreas.  “Together, we are protecting a globally significant island wilderness, at a scale that neither the province nor the Nature Trust could do on its own,” said Delorey. Read more »

    Most past HFN newsletters now searchable

    newsletterThe Halifax Field Naturalists have published a newsletter, generally four per year, since its inception in 1975. Most of the past HFN Newsletters (The Halifax Field Naturalist) have now been scanned into a text-readable PDF format, and are available on this website. (The most recent 3 years are available only as print copies distributed to members.) Browse issues or conduct a search of issues at Archived Newsletters. Today I was asked about a 1970s report on Halifax City trees; I found it quickly by searching for “Norway Maple”. – David P

    HFN Art Exhibit runs ’till Sep. 27

    Charlie Cron PicThe Halifax Field Naturalists have partnered with the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History to hold a Members’ Art Exhibit in celebration of the 40th anniversary of our founding. The official opening took place at the Museum on June 4th. The exhibit will run until September 27th, 2015, so plan to visit with your family and friends! View a few pics from the opening.

    NS Nature Trust seeking help to secure land in Rogue’s Roost area

    Rogue Roost, Chronicle Herald 8 June 2015A front page article in the Chronicle Herald features efforts of The Nova Scotia Nature Trust to acquire a critical piece of land in the Rogues Roost Wilderness Area. The Nature Trust will be hosting a conservation showcase event on June 18 at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic to talk about the Rogues Roost campaign and accept donations. Read more in the Chronicle Herald

    Contribute to Online Map for Halifax Green Network – by June 30

    Screen Capture of the online mapping tool All nature lovers are encouraged to provide input to the Halifax Green Network Plan (HGNP) by adding pins/descriptions to the HGNP online mapping tool to identify lands are that important for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem services.

    This map and information about the HGNP are available at

    A memo written by the Our HRM Alliance Greenbelt Scientific Advisory Committee
    provides some further context from an ecological perspective.

    As a component of Phase 1 (Phase 1 – Planning Foundations the values, issues and goals) of the Halifax Green Network Plan the map is available for input is available only to the end of June, 2015.
    Read more »

    Halifax Green Network Public Consultations May 30 – June 20, 2015

    “Halifax Regional Council has identified the need for a strategic vision and a planning & implementation framework for protecting and managing open space. The public is being asked to give input into the plan. Here’s a list of the upcoming public engagement opportunities. Please join us. We want to hear from you!”

    Saturday, May 30th 9:00 am – 12:00 pm Pop-Up Event
    Halifax Central Library, 5440 Spring Garden Road, Halifax
    Read more »