Celebrating nature and wildlife

Upper Canada Migratory Bird Sanctuary’s Nature & Wildlife Day on October 2nd.

The yearly event, hosted by the Friends of the Sanctuary, offered an array of informative, educational and entertaining  options.

Little Ray’s Reptile Zoo brought a few residents from their home in Ottawa. The lucky reptiles and amphibians in attendance were able to enjoy the warmth of being inside the Interpretive Centre.

Outside, despite the cold and mist, everyone seemed to enjoy the various exhibits.

“The Roasting Man” filled the autumn air with the delicious smell of summertime barbecue.

Under the shelter of tents, visitors could browse the tables filled with various items for the silent auction, arts and crafts, baking, and used books. They could also try their luck with some raffles. 

Visitors were given the opportunity to build a birdhouse or sift through samples of water for various bugs and other living things.

The Raisin Region Conservation Authority and the South Nation Conservation (SNC) were in attendance to answer questions. 

In fact, the SNC was also hoping for some votes. They were recently “awarded $10,000 in funding from the SHELL Environmental Fund.” By voting online for SNC, the $10,000 could turn into $25,000. Shell will choose the top eight programs. If interested in voting, the link is http://fuellingchange.com/#org-list where South Nation is listed in the project profiles.

The Canadian Carp Club was also available with their freshly caught carp. For those who were curious, “petting” the carp or more precisely “toughing” the carp was also possible. The club was there to bring awareness to the “sport” of carp fishing. It was pointed out that the majority of all carp caught are again returned to their habitats, including the visitors to Nature & Wildlife Day.

For those looking to pet wildlife with fur, there were a number of opportunities. The Monalea Petting Zoo’s llamas and goats were more than eager to say hello. Also there were rabbits and ducks.

The Muskoka Wildlife Centre’s demonstration included an introduction to a skunk, a grey fox, an opposum, a porcupine, and a groundhog. For those who wished, the groundhog welcomed a friendly pat.

Falcon Environmental Services provided the airborne wildlife who couldn’t be touched, but could definitely be admired and appreciated.  Among the guests present were the Harris Hawk, the Peregrine Falcon, the  American Kestral, the Barn Owl, and the Great Horned Owl.

The proceeds from the event will “assist in the promotion of educational, resource management, recreational and interpretive programs at the Sanctuary.”

The free-to-use walking trails are open year round.

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