Gulls deserve more respect

Ahhhh yes! It’s finally a beautiful Saturday, and a great opportunity for me to get outside. Without a cloud in the sky, Donna, Pam and I headed to Ashbridges Bay to see if there were any wintering ducks around. On arrival we could hear a few ducks (the yodeling of the Long-tailed ducks is quite […]

Saving the Scarborough Bluffs foxes

A while back I received a call from a neighbour on my street saying that they had found a fox with mange.  That was when I first discovered how many of my fellow Torontonians loved our animal neighbours and were willing to go above and beyond to help them. Together, the neighbour and I called […]

Owls a hoot, but keep your distance

Charlotte and I were walking down a path, through a generic patch of tall trees with branches everywhere. It didn’t seem to be anything special, least of all something to write an article about! As we were walking, talking, and enjoying the sunny day we both did a double take. We had walked within metres […]

How I fell in love with birds

People occasionally ask me how, out of all the possible hobbies out there, I ended up birding. The story began just seven years ago with a mother’s day present from my son. My son, who, in his words, always struggled to find me the right gift, decided upon a lovely bird feeder. A short while […]

Hummingbirds on the move in East Toronto

A streak of red and green followed by the slightest hum of tiny wings beating 55-75 times per second: the beautiful Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) makes its always-memorable presence known to me. On this particular day the little hummingbird, only 7.5-9cm (3-5 inches) from beak tip to tail tip, appeared to be studying me as […]

Make room for trees

Did you feel the heat this summer? I did, too. When I had to go out on foot, I criss-crossed the streets, looking for the shadiest stretches of sidewalk. Of course, I’ve always been a shameless tree-hugger. The landscape of the U.S. Gulf Coast city where I grew up alternated between patches of live oaks […]

Caring for nature a part of Christianity

What comes to mind when you think of the word ‘spirituality’? In connection with church we often picture Sunday services, prayers and sermons about how to get to Heaven. In bookstores the spirituality section will typically have numerous books on meditation, world religions or the afterlife. But there’s a spirituality which is about getting your […]

Kingfisher call brings to mind old money

As I stop my car, turn it off and listen for my feathery friends, I hear an unexpectedly harsh screeching and a sharp sound like tick-tick-tick-tick-tick. I instantly recognize the distinctive sound and I’m suddenly reminded of money! (I’ll explain later). Suddenly a streak of blue flies by and out of sight. Too fast to […]