By: Kristin Palilionis, Invasive Species Centre (ISC)
A beautiful, bright red, showy invasive insect is making headlines in North America. It is known as the spotted lanternfly (SLF; Lycorma delicatula). It swarms by the hundreds to thousands, damages farm crops, and disrupts natural ecosystems. While it has not been found in Canada, we are concerned about the risk of introduction, as this notorious invasive species has been intercepted in two New York counties right across the border from Ontario’s Niagara region.
By (Blog & Images): Safe Wings
Every Spring, organizations like Safe Wings experience a significant increase in the number of
reported bird-window collisions as large numbers of migrating birds return to their breeding
grounds in Canada. Raising awareness of window collisions and the need to rescue survivors is
just one of the ways Safe Wings Ottawa is helping to reduce bird deaths through research,
prevention and rescue. These efforts are important because North America has lost one-third of all its birds in the last 50 years, and window collisions are one of the main reasons for this
By: John Gould, Communications Assistant, Not Far From the Tree
Around the world, there is enough food produced to feed everybody; and yet a billion people go hungry each day. In a city where 1 in 7 households are food insecure, we believe the massive bounty produced by Toronto’s orchard shouldn’t fall to waste, when it can instead be shared with the community. We are Not Far From the Tree (NFFTT), Toronto’s fruit picking and sharing program. Our mission is to increase food access, promote a healthy environment and build community by empowering Torontonians to pick and share the 1.5 million pounds of fruit that grows in the city every year. The bounty from each fruit pick is split 3 ways: ⅓ is provided to the tree owner , ⅓ is split among the picking volunteers, and ⅓ is delivered via cargo bike to food banks, shelters, and community kitchens in the neighbourhood.
By: Wildlife Conservation Society Canada
Now, more than ever, people and nations across the world are recognizing the growing threat of biodiversity loss. The Canadian federal government has responded to this crisis by announcing its intention to protect 25% of lands and waters by 2025. At local and provincial levels, stewardship and conservation initiatives, as well as land use and development policies, can give nature a chance to thrive. However, in order to conserve biodiversity effectively with these initiatives and policies, we must identify those areas that are most vital to the persistence of biodiversity.
By: Allison Hands & Bethany Kempster, BEAN Co-Chairs
When you hear the word “biodiversity” does your mind conjure images of lush rainforests or tropical coral reefs? What about your own backyard? Would you be surprised to learn that Ontario is home to 30,000 known species of plants and animals? Biodiversity supports the natural systems which we rely on - getting to know what lives in Ontario is the first step to understanding and protecting it. Getting outdoors and exploring biodiversity doesn’t have to be hard! Check out these easy to-do backyard activities
From Holiday Cheer, to Keeping our Streams Clear: Discarded Christmas Trees used in Greater Toronto Area Stream Restoration Projects
By: Ashley Smith, Streams Ontario Volunteer
Throughout the environmental industry, stream restoration professionals have been incorporating bioengineering practices into stream bank erosion control projects. As you may have guessed, these bioengineering techniques involve the use of natural materials such as debris from trees, logs, and shrubs, but did you know that your real Christmas trees can be used too? After spending a long winter inside your home, when their job of providing holiday cheer is over, they often end up on curb sides, waiting to be picked up and disposed of. Instead, why not donate them to a great cause, where they can be incorporated back into the natural environment as a tool for erosion control and habitat enhancement in your local watersheds?
By: Colin Cassin, Policy Analyst, Invasive Species Centre (ISC)
Hemlock fans, I have some bad news for you. There is a new forest pest in Ontario that requires your attention. Now, if the name hemlock woolly adelgid sounds familiar to you, it may be because in the last decade two populations of HWA were detected and eradicated in Ontario. Immediate action was taken in both instances and our woodlots have enjoyed several HWA-free years as a result.
By: City of Toronto
On October 3rd, Toronto City Council unanimously passed the City's first Biodiversity Strategy. The Strategy aims to support healthier, more robust biodiversity and increased awareness of nature in Toronto. The Strategy recognizes biodiversity as fundamental to supporting the livability and resilience of the city.
Every person has the right to access clean and healthy lakes and rivers in Canada. At Watersheds Canada, we work to keep these precious places naturally clean and healthy for people and wildlife to continue using for years to come. We work with others to meet the needs of local communities, whether you are a concerned citizen, a landowner, a lake association looking for help, or a coalition of groups interested in activating your local community. While we are a small grassroots organization, we offer Canadians many great open-source programs:
By: Kathryn Peiman, Ph.D., OFAH Atlantic Salmon Restoration Program Coordinator. Images Provided by OFAH
As I walk down the school hallway carrying Atlantic Salmon eggs, two girls are leading me to their classroom. One is walking fast. The other girl asks her to slow down. She responds with, “I can’t, I’m too excited - the eggs are here!”
For five months every year, hundreds of students raise and release baby Atlantic Salmon into local streams. Atlantic Salmon were extirpated from Lake Ontario by 1896, and since 2006, the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry have partnered to Bring Back the Salmon, a program sponsored by Ontario Power Generation with classroom hatcheries currently funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation.