2020 Christmas Bird Count – Fisherville

2020 Christmas Bird Count – Fisherville
(Feature photo, above: Tundra Swans, photo by Diane Salter) Report by Linda Thrower, Compiler As a compiler I was lucky enough to have a Christmas Bird Count this year. A lot of people had to do double duty and cover more than one square to say this count was covered. So, with a lot of co-operation from the birders and the weather the Fisherville CBC was held on December 28th, 2020. It had snowed for Christmas which a lot of parents and Santa were glad to see. The luck continued with enough warmer temperatures and rain to take away all of that snow by the 28th. But luck can only go so far and once again the winds picked up just enough to send all of the smaller species of birds and even some of the larger ones into hiding.…
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Canadian Bat Box Project

Canadian Bat Box Project
By Karen Vanderwolf If you have a bat box I want to know about it! Bats in Canada face multiple threats from habitat loss and disease. As towns and cities expand, the large old trees that bats call home are being cleared, and bats are losing their roosts. Bats need a warm and secure place to roost during the day in the summer. A bat box is a simple and effective way to provide additional roosting habitat for bats, but little is known about bat box use in Canada. This especially important as three bat species in Canada are listed as endangered: little brown bats, northern long-eared bats, and tricolored bats. Bats now face additional persecution due to worries about COVID-19, but bats in North America do not have the virus that causes COVID-19 https://cwf-fcf.org/en/about-cwf/faq/faqs/should-i-be-worried-bats.html?src=blog Which bat species use bat…
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Berries Are For the Birds

Berries Are For the Birds
Article and photos by Inga Hinnerichsen The last of the fall flowers have withered. Only dry brown stems remain of their former glory... but not all is lost yet. There are still lots of protein rich seed packets left at the ends of many stems. They not only insure the new plants germinating in the spring, but also provide nutrition for many over-wintering birds and small mammals in our area. By now most of the insect eating migratory birds have left on their annual trek south. A few hardy (foolhardy?) individuals are sticking it out for the winter. A handful of Robins always ignore the call of the south, but their normal ground foraging will be rudely interrupted by frost and a blanket of the white stuff. What to do? The smaller seed-eaters will soon polish off the remaining plant…
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2020 Long Point Butterfly Count Results

2020 Long Point Butterfly Count Results
By Adam Timpf (NFN member and event organizer) The heat and humidity were a challenge to the comfort and energy of observers, but the weather was far better than the rains we had last year. Some people (author included) found the butterflies to be in short supply, while others reported good numbers and diversity. It was feast or famine depending where you were looking. We had great coverage with 35 observers in 15 parties spending 67.5 hours in the field, covering approximately 85.5 km. 3997 individuals of 54 species were recorded. This is our fifth highest individual total (average 2615), and just shy of our record species total of 56. We set several record highs and even managed to add a new species to the count! Highlights New to the count: Mulberry Wing (3). Amazingly, three groups photographed three individual Mulberry…
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Levick honored for wildlife mortality reduction efforts

Levick honored for wildlife mortality reduction efforts
Norfolk Field Naturalists’ member and Long Point Biosphere Reserve President Rick Levick was recently honored by Ontario Nature with the Ian Shenstone Fraser Memorial Award.  Levick’s contributions to reducing wildlife road mortality and his work on the Long Point Causeway Improvement Project earned him the nod for this year’s award. Ontario Nature’s Conservation Awards recognize excellence by honouring the work of individuals, groups, government agencies and corporations to protect wild species and wild spaces in Ontario. More information can be found at the links below: https://ontarionature.org/news-release/2020-conservation-awards/ https://longpointbiosphere.com/news/ Congratulations to Rick on receiving this honour!    
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Species in Focus: Blanding’s Turtle

Species in Focus: Blanding’s Turtle
Status: Threatened — “Threatened” means the species lives in the wild in Ontario, is not endangered, but is likely to become endangered if steps are not taken to address factors threatening it. Date added to the Species at Risk in Ontario List — The Blanding’s Turtle was already assessed as threatened when the Endangered Species Act took effect in 2008. A reassessment in May 2017 confirmed this status. What it looks like: The Blanding’s Turtle is a medium-sized turtle easily identified by its bright yellow throat and chin. Unlike most Ontario turtles that have wide, flatter shells, the Blanding’s Turtle has a domed shell that resembles an army helmet. Its shell is black to brown with yellow flecks and streaks and can reach 27 centimetres long. Its head and limbs are black-grey and the bottom shell is rich yellow. Where…
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Forest Bathing

Forest Bathing
Story and photo by Inga Hinnerichsen Forest bathing . . . Forest what? Though the pairing of those two words may seem strange at first, forest bathing is a term used for the intentional practice of connecting with nature and surrounding yourself with the energy of the natural world. It is the Japanese concept of shinrin-yoku, or taking a slow walk in the woods and absorbing the forest atmosphere with all your senses. The Japanese word shinrin means forest and yoku means bath. Never have we humans been so far from merging with the natural world and so divorced from nature. According to a study sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency (USA), the average American spends 93% of his/her time indoors. Canadians are not far behind. The good news is that even a small amount of time in nature can…
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Fisherville Christmas Bird Count (December 2019)

Fisherville Christmas Bird Count (December 2019)
Report by Linda Thrower, Compiler December 28th, 2019 certainly didn’t bring the weather of 2017, but who needs wind chills of -30 C while trying to count birds? Instead it was on the plus side with the temperature of +2 C at midnight and no winds to speak of until later in the day. And who could complain about having open water—not the waterfowl. But even with the weather co-operating, the birds were well hidden. Did they know all of us were looking for them? Thankfully, there were a bunch of keen eyes out there and some really good species popped out here and there. So, the new high and low numbers look like this: Horned Grebes were found in their lowest numbers since 2001 when 197 were counted. This year, 76 were seen. American Wigeons are back on the…
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Woodhouse Christmas Bird Count (December 2019)

Woodhouse Christmas Bird Count (December 2019)
Report by Adam Timpf   These are the results of the 33rd Woodhouse CBC held on Sunday, December 15th, 2019. The Woodhouse CBC is centred seven kilometres east of Simcoe, at the crossroads of Highway 3 and Cockshutt Road at Renton in Norfolk County and roughly covers from Port Dover to Waterford and just west of Simcoe to east of Jarvis. First of all, let me thank all 45 participants for spending their time and energy and contributing important data to this count. It wouldn’t be possible without you and I hope I can count on you all again next December. Also, let me thank the NFN for sponsoring the count and to my mom Tresa for putting on a delicious wrap-up dinner at her house. Nourishment is always needed after a full day in the field! Weather: The weather…
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Ontario Nature Carolinian East — Fall Meeting

Ontario Nature Carolinian East — Fall Meeting
Report by Jan Grincevicius Twice a year the member clubs under the umbrella of Ontario Nature, Carolinian East Region, meet to update their activities and discuss other current issues. The member clubs take turns hosting these meetings. This time, the Fall Meeting was hosted by the Norfolk Field Naturalists in the Walsingham Community Centre. Ontario Nature was represented by Lisa Richardson, Nature Network and Communications Coordinator. Representatives from eight groups were present: Niagara Falls Nature Club, Halton/North Peel Naturalist Club, Hamilton Naturalists’ Club, Peninsula Field Naturalists, South Peel Naturalists’ Club, Norfolk Field Naturalists, The Long Point Biosphere, and Nature’s Calling Environmental Education. Discussion highlights include: Halton/North Peel Naturalists Club The Bees and Beyond — A Pollinator and Biodiversity Workshop was well attended. Participants learned about the importance of pollinators and native plants. Each participant received six native plants. Members participate…
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