Warbler Soup!

Warbler Soup! The waterfall earned its keep today with six species of migrating warblers plus a warbling vireo. Shortly after luncheon there was a terrific commotion on the header pool of the waterfall with between 15 and 20 small birds frantically competing for the chance to splash in the water. They splashed around [...]

2021-09-14T13:39:58-04:00Saturday, September 11, 2021|

How Many Species Live In Baie-D’Urfé?

Looking about you and learning about what you see About a week ago we wrote about our participation in the Nature Conservancy Canada “Bioblitz” during which we recorded all the species we saw in a five day period in our garden and the nearby roads and parks. The total came to 217. We [...]

2021-08-14T16:34:55-04:00Saturday, August 14, 2021|

Small Town Biodiversity

IS THIS THE ‘MOST BIODIVERSE” COMMUNITY IN CANADA For a five day period that took in last weekend we took part in a Canada-wide “Bioblitz” organized by the Nature Conservancy of Canada and the Canadian Wildlife Federation. We (and our little town of Baie-D’Urfé) came within a whisker of being the top [...]

2021-08-07T15:10:50-04:00Saturday, August 7, 2021|

500 … and a change of pace

500 days ago I set myself the daily challenge of identifying and then sharing at least one different species of bird, insect, plant etc that I could find locally. Yesterday the number reached the 500 mark. My intention is to double that and reach at least 1000 species but no longer will I [...]

2021-07-18T11:09:17-04:00Sunday, July 18, 2021|

Scientific Stamp Collecting

I am reading and enjoying a fascinating memoir at the moment. If you'd like to read it, look for "A Curious Boy: The Making of a Scientist" by Richard Fortey. The author is a contemporary of mine, just a couple of years older, and was a palaeontologist at the Natural History Museum in [...]

2021-03-25T20:43:11-04:00Thursday, March 25, 2021|

A Year of Neighbourhood Nature

How time does fly — just over a year ago I was inspired by a fine naturalist from England (thanks Tom) who had set himself the challenge of identifying 1000 UK species — birds, grasses, spiders, whatever. I had a couple of exchanges with him was assured that the concept was not trademarked, [...]

2021-03-05T12:18:00-05:00Thursday, March 4, 2021|

“Naturally Speaking” – A Really Big Woodpecker

Even the woodpecker owes its success to the fact that he used his head. —Author Unknown Continuing with the theme of occasional “Naturally Speaking” accounts of species you can encounter on the West Island of Montreal I am going to introduce a another bird. Botanists and entomologist friends of mine need [...]

2021-01-11T21:59:21-05:00Friday, January 8, 2021|

West Island Wildlife #1

West Island Wildlife #1 A new venture ...  A 14 page illustrated "webzine" to introduce readers to the amazing variety of wildlife and plants to be found in the green spaces, parks and gardens of the West Island of Montreal. This is the first of what is hoped to become an occasional [...]

2020-09-24T16:39:17-04:00Thursday, September 24, 2020|

Fungal Bonanza

That time of year again A couple of days ago we took our exercise in the arboretum (again) and found the trail we were exploring to be leading us past one after another after another "mushroom" which were popping up and spore shedding everywhere we looked. There will be more in the coming [...]

2020-08-14T12:17:36-04:00Friday, August 14, 2020|

Afternoon Snack

Common Yellow Garden Spider (Argiope aurantia) About this time of year we start to enjoy the big webs and bright yellow bodies of the Yellow Garden Spider. Today we found one busily wrapping up a snack she had caught in her web ... hard to tell, but just possibly a Japanese Beetle. [...]

2020-09-24T16:38:05-04:00Saturday, August 8, 2020|
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