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Showing posts from December, 2015

Do turtles talk to each other?

It's rarely heard, and not by people over 40 years-old, and usually with special equipment underwater, and out of their natural habitat it stops: Turtles do vocalize and we think it's pretty sweet. (see link to article below)

But we wonder about the conditions for the turtles of Cootes, swimming in a noisy environment filled with the sounds of traffic.

If anyone knows more about turtles communicating, feel free to pipe-up in the comments!




LINKS:
http://www.newsweek.com/turtles-talk-each-other-parents-call-out-offspring-265613
http://www.seaturtle.org/PDF/FerraraCR_2013_JCompPsychol.pdf


Growing the Connection: Expanding the Cootes To Escarpment Eco Park

Some tremendously good news - any expansion of protected habitat is welcomed, and this is a fairly significant addition to the Cootes to Escarpment Eco Park. Read the release about the land purchase to create an intact wildlife corridor connecting Cootes Paradise to the Niagara Escarpment here.

From the release:
The land, in Dundas’ Pleasant View (York and Valley Roads and York and Old Guelph Roads), falls within one of Canada’s biodiversity hotspots.  It is home to more than 1,500 species of plants and animals, including nearly one- quarter of Canada’s wild plants and more than 50 at-risk species.  It provides the last intact ecological connection between Lake Ontario wetlands and the Niagara escarpment.   Later generations may take such protected areas for granted, but it is certainly exciting to see the pieces fall in to place during our lifetime. This is a big project (evidenced by the cooperation from some large institutions) and speaks well of their collective foresight.


Parking to Paradise: Retrofitting a Parking Lot to Increase Sustainability

Guest blogger: Reyna Matties 

Urbanization displaces and degrades ecosystems that are critical for humans, animals, and plants. Sustainable urban development has become a priority in the challenge to re-design our ageing infrastructure. Working to coexist peacefully with the surrounding environment will increase sustainability. As a graduate student of Biology at McMaster University, I am studying the applied ecology and hydrology of a parking lot system (Lot M). Ancaster Creek, a rare cold-water ecosystem, runs along Lot M and is part of an essential wildlife corridor for native species such as salmon, turtle, and deer. Together with Dr. Susan Dudley, I am working to retrofit the stormwater management of the system to minimize the impact of contaminants and runoff into the creek.

One method of achieving this goal is through increasing and restoring the land next to the creek. This is called a riparian buffer, which protects the system by providing habitat for animals, increasing sto…