They have poor eyesight and would barely win a race against a turtle, but porcupines are not defenseless against predators. Their coats include about 30,000 pointy quills; modified hairs which with a flick of the tail, can be dislodged into an enemy’s flesh. During a single encounter, a porcupine may lose hundreds of quills – which can measure up to 12 centimeters long – but can regrow them just like other hairs.
What would you do to attract a mate and make a family? If you’re an American White Pelican, it’s obvious, grow a large bump on your bright orange-yellow beak. The bony protrusion (also called a caruncle) grows on both male and female pelicans and is believed be an ornament to attract an ideal breeding partner.
The boreal provides clean water and oxygen, foods and medicine, stores carbon, mitigates flood impacts, and forms the foundations of many cultural practices. It is a vast region that has long supported people, organisms and landscapes well deserving of both reverence and celebration! It is through careful planning for the future that the integrity of the boreal can continue to be upheld in order to support future generations for another 150 years and onward.
An alliance of two First Nations and two conservation organizations are hoping Manitobans will weigh-in on a proposal to protect eight islands on Lake Winnipegosis from developments. The provincial government is presently asking Manitobans how they feel about establishing the Grand and Goose Islands complex as provincial parks. March 24th is the deadline for public comments.
Like many species including moose, and golden winged warblers, the red headed woodpecker thrive in habitats that are transitional in nature. Younger, disturbed forests that have not yet reached maturity or open forest areas where the boreal blends into grasslands can offer ideal conditions for these annual migrants. It’s a species in peril that underlines the importance of conserving landscapes of sufficient size to allow for natural processes to like habitat succession and natural fires, to occur. Read our newest blog on the challenges facing this species.
Many views have been expressed recently about how Manitoba can do its part to help address climate change. The potential for a carbon tax or a cap and trade system have dominated these discussions. Many wonder how Manitoba can make a significant contribution to the effort when we are responsible for only a small fraction of global emissions.
Our trip this summer was a steep learning curve for me on multiple fronts. (I mean, sure I had paddled before… but 46 straight days of paddling really gave me an opportunity to perfect skills that I may have previously considered to be more than adequate…) To my surprise, the most important lesson that I learned had nothing at all to do with canoeing.