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Opinion: Everyone can help Alberta's bats

Opinion: Everyone can help Alberta's bats
(July 31, 2018) Alberta has more than just oil and gas underground - it also has the largest bat hobernaculum found in the boreal forest in Western Canada. Hundreds of bat hibernate in a muddy cave carved out of bedrock by weak sulphuric acid northeast of Edmonton. It may not sound like the most luxurious living space but it is safe. It may not be for much longer.

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As deadly white-nose syndrome spreads west, bat biologists race to prepare

As deadly white-nose syndrome spreads west, bat biologists race to prepare
(July 18, 2018) "Spring is a time when life bursts forth. We see new growth, births, and the emergence of hibernating animals. But as a bat biologist, spring is now a season of dread for me. Once again this year, I found myself awaiting news of the spread of deadly white-nose syndrome (WNS). We have learned that the fungus that causes this disease, attacking bats as they overwinter, has continued its westward march, appearing for the first time this year in Manitoba, Wyoming and Minnesota. T...

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A sustainable plan for Ontario's Ring of Fire

A sustainable plan for Ontario's Ring of Fire
(July 17, 2018) How can Ontario best approach the development of the mineral-rich Ring of Fire in the Far North of Ontario? How do we protect the millions of tonnes of carbon stored in peatlands and forests in the area?  How do we intelligently design infrastructure to ensure maximum benefit and minimum impact on ecosystems?If new mining projects and all-weather roads are to be accepted by First Nations communities and others who care about the future of the region, they will need to be planned in ways tha...

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A big fish story - in maps!

A big fish story - in maps!
(June 20, 2018) Freshwater fish are swimming upstream in a battle against everything from climate change to increased fishing pressure as new roads reach remote lakes.  Our new story map, The Water We Share, explains how we are studying the major challenges facing fish in Ontario’s Far North, including how we are identifying which watersheds should be priorities for conservation in this vast and largely untouched region. One of the biggest challenges for understanding the more than 50 fish species th...

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Seven Winters and 70,000 Kilometers

Seven Winters and 70,000 Kilometers
(June 08, 2018) It took seven winters and 70,000 kilometres of flying over the vast forests and lowlands of far northern Ontario to build a picture of where wolverines are – and aren’t – in their easternmost North American outpost.  Our goal was to develop a method for accurately predicting where these elusive creatures were likely to be found in order to be able to track changes in their range in the face of climate change and resource development. We flew low and slow for hundreds of ho...

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Searching for Wolverines in a Vast Northern Wilderness

Searching for Wolverines in a Vast Northern Wilderness
(June 08, 2018) It was truly like searching for a needle in a haystack: finding an average-dog-size mammal in a vast expanse of boreal forest larger than the state of California. Yet our seven-year effort at the conservation organization WCS Canada to survey the elusive wolverine in the province of Ontario has provided us with a much clearer picture of how this threatened species is faring in its easternmost North American outpost.Wolverines, especially males, have home ranges as large as 1,000 square...

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The Clock is Ticking; Are We Making Progress?

The Clock is Ticking; Are We Making Progress?
(May 10, 2018) The federal Liberal Party made a number of important commitments during the last election campaign on improving environmental protections. In an era when political promises often bring low expectations, it is important to note that this government has made progress on some commitments, like setting out a pathway for increasing our protected areas and taking action to help species of risk. But there is still a long road ahead, especially on issues like modernizing our environmental assessment pro...

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Protecting Whales in an Ice-free Arctic

Protecting Whales in an Ice-free Arctic
(May 07, 2018) Canadians watched in horror last summer as one North Atlantic right whale after another was found dead around the Gulf of St. Lawrence, washed up on beaches or floating offshore, apparent victims of ship strikes or fishing gear entanglements.  Scientists think part of the problem may stem from the whales moving into new territory in the Gulf of St. Lawrence in search of food, where they instead encounter busy shipping lanes and commercial fishing zones. This set of circumstan...

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Our assessment of Impact Assessment Act gives it a C-

Our assessment of Impact Assessment Act gives it a C-
(March 29, 2018) The federal government’s new Impact Assessment Act could be a game changer for ensuring short-term decision making does not undermine the long-term health of ecosystems and species.  But in its current draft form, the Act is long on talk and short on action. WCS Canada is one of eight major environmental groups that have jointly issued a report card on the bill that gives it a C grade. The report card notes that while the proposed Act touches on many of the basic requirements of next-...

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Welcome Martin von Mirbach!

Welcome Martin von Mirbach!
(February 26, 2018) Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) Canada is pleased to welcome Martin von Mirbach to a new position at WCS Canada -- Director for Conservation Strategy. Martin will be responsible for providing strategic oversight to WCS Canada’s programs. He will be seeking opportunities to advance our conservation objectives and improve our effectiveness and conservation impact. He will help formulate strategies to build strong relationships and formal partnerships with governments and Indigenous group...

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