Naturehood

NATUREHOOD PROGRAM GOES AHEAD WITH INCREASED FUNDING

NatureHood is nature right in your neighbourhood. It’s nearby nature: the park at the end of your street, your backyard, a tree on your street, a community garden plot, an overlooked urban forest, or a special green space in your community. Your NatureHood is any place where you ‘connect’ with nature’s wonders—from watching a bee pollinate a flower, to feeding wild birds, to witnessing the trees change with the passing of the seasons.

The goal of the Long Point Biosphere Reserve NatureHood program is to connect young people to nearby nature and teach them about the importance of natural wildlife areas. The program is a response to society’s growing disconnect from nature, and an acknowledgement that many complex barriers limit children’s access to nature. This is an inclusive program welcoming children from all walks of life.

Covid-19 has hindered so many activities this year but with increased funding from Nature Canada, we are planning a series of outdoor activities combined with virtual “walks” through nature led by a knowledgeable outdoor educator and the use of citizen science technology.

We will provide more information as this exciting program unfolds.

 

New NatureHood Videos

With funding from Nature Canada, our NatureHood program went virtual this past year.

Due to Covid-19 new videos were produced to showcase the wonderful natural beauty and fragile ecosystem at locations where we normally take our students. We will feature new videos every couple of weeks so be sure to visit our website home page over the next couple of months to see them all.

We have seen a dramatic shift in the way children spend their time, with less time playing outside and more time spent indoors, sedentary and screen-based. Excessive screen time is having negative health impacts on Canadian children.

Vernal pools provide critical habitat for many species, including wood frogs, Jefferson salamanders and fairy shrimp. They dry out in the summer and vernal pools don’t support fish which might otherwise eat the eggs or young of these species. Frogs and Salamanders are widely accepted as environmental indicators and are important to Ontario’s biodiversity.

Students that join us on a trip to the Long Point Bird Observatory get an experience of a lifetime. This trip is highly recommended for anyone interested in birds. Long Point, Ontario, Canada is one of the most exciting places on the continent to observe our rich birdlife. LPBO biologists and visitors have studied birds here since 1960, and over 400 bird species have been observed in the Long Point area.

In southwestern Ontario’s Norfolk County lies an incredible natural oasis known as Backus Woods. This spectacular older-growth forest is home to some of the oldest living trees in Ontario and is one of the best remaining examples of Carolinian forest in Canada. A haven for species at risk, Backus Woods provides important habitat for prothonotary and cerulean warblers, Louisiana waterthrush, eastern foxsnake, Blanding’s turtle and Jefferson salamander.

Big Creek National Wildlife Area is located at the base of the Long Point peninsula on the north shore of Lake Erie. It consists of 3,250 hectares (8,030 acres) provincially significant wetlands. It is home to wildlife including birds, frogs, turtles and many other species that depend upon wetland habitats. The wetlands are a major staging area for waterfowl and hundreds of species of birds that use the area during their migrations in the spring and fall seasons.

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