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Endangered Perspective – Plight of the Piping Plover

An article by Zack Metcalfe on Halifax media Co-op highlights our need to respect the significance of coastal habitat. “The piping plover is an excellent example of how dangerous unintended consequences can be, everything from taking your four-wheeler down the beach to enjoying a fire in the sand with friends and family. Public awareness of the piping plover’s plight could be its last best hope for survival.” Read more

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 7, 2015: YOUR CONSERVATION LANDS

The Nova Scotia Nature Trust, now in its 20th year, has formally protected 65 ‘Conservation Lands’ across Nova Scotia for wildlife and people to enjoy. Karen McKendry, Conservation Coordinator with the Nature Trust will highlight a few of the protected sites, and delve into the world of working with landowners to accomplish private land conservation. 7:30 p.m. at the NSMNH. Read more

New Invasive Species found in Frog Pond

fanwortDiscovery of Fanwort (Cabomba caroliniana) in Frog Pond (Halifax, N.S.) by Halifax Field Naturalists Burkhard & Ingrid Plache appears to be the first report of this species in Nova Scotia. The source is likely discarded aquarium contents. It may have been in Frog Pond for more than five years. Read more

From the Archives: West Dover – Peggy’s Cove Barrens 1980

The June to December 1980 issue of the Halifax Field Naturalist, No. 24, includes info. on the geology, soils, history, habitats, vegetal history, birds, and the intertidal zone with species lists for lichens, liverworts and mosses (likely not comprehensive) and vascular plants (more comprehensive). It’s a good introduction to the area, not readily available elsewhere.
View Issue No 24 | All archived issues

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 7, 2015: YOUR CONSERVATION LANDS

align=The Nova Scotia Nature Trust, now in its 20th year, has formally protected 65 ‘Conservation Lands’ across Nova Scotia for wildlife and people to enjoy. What is special about these properties? How did they come to be? How do we get to them? These and other questions will be addressed by HFN member Karen McKendry, Conservation Coordinator with the Nature Trust. 7:30 pm at NSMNH Read more

SATURDAY JAN. 3, 2015: ANNUAL SEWER STROLL

sewer strollHFN and the Nova Scotia Bird Society, led by HFN/NSBS member Dennis Hippern, will visit all the favourite winter bird sites in and around Halifax Harbour looking for ducks, gulls, and alcids–Hartlen Point, Eastern Passage, Dartmouth Cove, Sullivan’s Pond, Tuft’s cove, and the Bedford Waterfront. Read more

Methane from Northern Permafrost — A Cause for Concern?

Large areas of northern regions are covered by permafrost. As the Arctic warms, the permafrost will degrade and lead to increased emissions of greenhouse gases such as methane. Recently, global atmospheric methane concentrations have begun to increase again after being stable for a decade, and the Arctic is one of the possible sources. Dr. Rachel Chang will outline results from her Arctic research and discuss potential causes that could be contributing to this increase in a talk to the Nova Scotia Institute of Science on Monday Jan 5, 2015. Read more

Bob Bancroft: Time to clean house at Natural Resources

forestIn the Saturday Chronicle Herald, Bob Bancroft, wildlife biologist, Chair of Nature NS, and co-author of the 2010 report Restoring the Health of Nova Scotia Forests writes that “…protected areas need to be connected by ecologically healthy working forests over about 60 per cent of the province. Quality forests would replace prices like $8.20 per tonne for fibre that now exist….It’s time to think beyond four-year terms with respect to DNR’s mandate for forests and wildlife. Politicians talk about balance, but there is no ecological balance in Nova Scotia’s current forest practices. Effective environmental legislation is long overdue. ” Rick Howe and Bob will be discussing these issues on News 95.7 Monday Dec 15 at 12:30 pm (link to archive). Read more

HFN Members’ Art Exhibit – call for entries

HFN is partnering with the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History to hold a Members’ Art Exhibit. The exhibit will open on June 4th prior to our regular “talk.” Members are invited to submit one piece of art related to nature or natural history. All forms of art are welcome; some examples are: basket making, carving, felting, hooking, painting, quilting, sculpturing, and needlework (like crewel embroidery or needlepoint). Even a favorite photograph you’ve taken qualifies. The 40th Anniversary Committee needs members to register an intention to participate in the Art Exhibit by mid-January. The contact person is Grace Beazley, 902-429-6626, rbeazleyATdal.ca.

Sharing Halifax space with wildlife

Unlike most Canadian cities, the urban core of Halifax is surrounded not by farms or endless burbs but by forested and coastal landscapes. Even within 30 kilometres of downtown Halifax, where approximately three-quarters of the population resides, developed areas are interspersed with substantive wild spaces. An article in the Nova Scotia Naturally series in the Chronicle Herald, highlights Halifax’s wild spaces and discusses some of what has to be done to preserve their wildness. View Article. Some supplementary materials are posted on the Wildland Writers’ website.

Bees of Canada

beeMargarita Miklasevskaja, Jakov Musafija and Laurence Packer of the Department of Biology at York University have set up an image database for the Bees of Canada View Image Database

Birds At Risk

Birds at Risk“Birds At Risk is a half hour documentary that travels to birding hotspots around Nova Scotia to examine the health of our bird populations. The film introduces a passionate group of birdwatchers, biologists and volunteers that are playing an important role in the scientific research that is critical to keeping bird species alive.” See the Broadcast Premiere on CBC Television’s Land & Sea on Sunday, December 7, 2014 at 12 Noon. View Trailer UPDATE (Dec 8): Entire Show