Weather or not
|

Weather or not

Had King David lived in Ontario, I think a September day might well have inspired him to write Psalm 19. You know the sort – where the sapphire sky beckons your gaze irresistibly upward and your heart craves something more. It’s nothing less than a glimpse of the eternal. The breeze is like a heavenly…

A rare bird, a new word and why I quit my ‘life-list’
|

A rare bird, a new word and why I quit my ‘life-list’

Not being from the UK, I wasn’t exactly sure what a “twitch” was, when I came across it in the following caption recently: “The Long-toed Stint generated one of the biggest twitches seen in Britain in years.” The photo was on a Bird News website, part of a post about a rare bird sighting in…

Dishabille
|

Dishabille

Autumn is one of my favourite seasons (the others are winter, spring and summer). In autumn one can harvest potatoes, carrots, late cabbages, painted corn, hemp, beets, winter squash and more. Summer is a fading memory for me. And autumn has its times of glory, to be sure: when the aspen leaves resemble gold coins….

Quirky humour blended with a passion for conservation
|

Quirky humour blended with a passion for conservation

Author Bibi Dumon Tak blends quirky wit, scientific knowledge, and conservation facts with poems formatted as modern communication techniques to draw young readers into the world of creatures with hooves. In an email conversation between a wild boar and a pig, a radio announcement about a cape buffalo, a 911 call about a mountain goat,…

Drab beauty
|

Drab beauty

If you have never lived with bluebirds, you don’t know what you’re missing. Bluebird restoration projects – mostly involving the creation of nesting boxes – are very popular, and for good reason. The bluebird – eastern, western and mountain species – are the hobbits of the songbird nation. When my father “got” a pair of…

Finding life in a cold-water companion
| |

Finding life in a cold-water companion

When South African documentary filmmaker Craig Foster fell into a personal Slough of Despond, he came close to drowning emotionally and mentally. Netflix’s 85-minute My Octopus Teacher records his year-long recovery with daily baptisms in the eight-degree Centigrade sea off Cape Town. There he discovered he was not alone. As baptism declares, he died to…