Connecting people with nature in Ontario's Mississippi Valley

Field naturalists enjoy nature outing in Pakenham wilderness

Saturday, February 7th was a perfect winter day for a large group of members from the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists (MVFN) enjoying the club’s annual winter outing.  With medium-cold temperatures and softly falling snow, the group wandered a trail in a deeply wooded area of the Pakenham uplands, enjoying the solitude, searching for animal tracks and listening for bird sounds.

The trek ended at the camp of noted conservationist Gerry Lee, who graciously hosted the group and provided a warm interior around a wood fire and also a pot of delicious mulled cider. Lee then gave a learned dissertation on the trapping industry and how traps are studied and constructed to have the minimum negative effect on the welfare of the animals sought. In addressing a question about the trapper as a conservationist, Gerry pointed out that it is always in the trappers’ economic interest not to rid the area of entire populations. Trapping is regulated and controlled by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and all trappers must be licensed.

Gerry Lee, (far right) noted local conservationist, greets the MVFN group at his camp in the Pakenham highlands and explains the setting. Photo by Howard Robinson

Gerry Lee, (far right) noted local conservationist, greets the MVFN group at his camp in the Pakenham highlands and explains the setting. Photo by Howard Robinson

 

Outside, the group watched the bird activity at one of Gerry’s bird feeders and sought out eagles at a carcass feeding area on a rock across a stream from the cabin. Only one bald eagle was sighted but other birds at the feeders included over a dozen chickadees, both hairy and downy woodpeckers, white breasted nuthatches and blue jays. A ruffed grouse was seen earlier, budding in a tree along the trail.

MVFN President and local bird columnist Cliff Bennett (centre), leads the nature ramble group in identifying birds coming in to feed. Photo by Howard Robinson

MVFN President and local bird columnist Cliff Bennett (centre), leads the nature ramble group in identifying birds coming in to feed. Photo by Howard Robinson

Warm thanks were presented to the host Gerry Lee, noting especially his great humour and generous hospitality. Leader of the group was MVFN President Cliff Bennett, who announced that the next MVFN outing will be April 25 and the theme will be nature photography. For more information on MVFN membership and programming, go to the website at mvfn.ca. MVFN is a local naturalist group and member of the Ontario Nature Network.

 

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A Winter Nature Ramble into the Pakenham Highlands

 A Winter Nature Ramble into the Pakenham Highlands

Date: Saturday, February 7, 2015

Car pooling: from the  Esso Gas Bar, Almonte at 9:30 am.

Bring:  lunch, hot beverage, snowshoes or cross- country skis.

Host: Jerry Lee. NOTE: the trail in to Jerry Lee’s cabin is groomed

You must pre-register for this event. Please register before hand with Cliff Bennett  613-256-5013 or bennett @magma.ca. For more information please contact Cliff.

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Geoheritage Tour

The Friends of Murphy’s Point Park are hosting a Geoheritage Tour on Saturday, October 25th, 2014.  For full details please see the poster below and the Friends of Murphy’s Point Park Website.

For further information about geological heritage of our area, visit the Ottawa-Gatineau Geoheritage Project website. The Ottawa-Gatineau Geoheritage Project promotes greater public knowledge and appreciation of the geology and related landscapes in and around Canada’s National Capital Region.

 

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MVFN Fall Nature Ramble at Gunn Creek Trail

MVFN Fall Nature Ramble at Gunn Creek Trail

Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014

Led by Joel Byrne

Car pooling: East Lanark meet at Union Hall for departure at 9:45 am. West Lanark meet at Hopetown, 10:15 am.

Gunn Creek Trail is in the County Forest between Dalhousie Conc. 2 and 3, County Road 16.

Bring: lunch, binoculars, camera, magnifying glass, field sketch book and any texts you wish.

For further information, please contact Cliff Bennett at 613-256-5013 or .

Note: Rain date Sunday, Nov. 5. If in doubt, please call Cliff no later than 9:30 am

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MVFN Program Events – Winter/Spring 2012

The following are the program dates planned thus far. Full details will be posted under ‘upcoming events’ for each event in turn.

March 3 Outing: Hawks and Owls on Amherst Island

Mar 15 Lecture: The Great River Project with Ottawa Riverkeeper Meredith Brown

March 27 Outing: Ducks at Presqu’ile – CANCELLED

April 4 Outing: Owl Prowl

April 11 Outing: Early Bird Walk

April 18 Outing: Early Bird Walk

Apr 19 Lecture: Spring bird tune-up: be ready to identify them before they arrive!

(Lesley Howes, Canadian Wildlife Service)

April 25 Outing: Early Bird Walk

May 17 Annual Banquet: Spring Gathering 2012

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