Canadian wildlife discoveries

This video from Canada says about itself:

This young bald eagle was released outside Windsor, Nova Scotia after rehabilitation at the Hope for Wildlife Centre.

From the Sackville Tribune Post in Canada:

Conservation scientists make interesting discoveries in 2011

Katie Tower

Published on June 27, 2012

SACKVILLE, NB – The team of scientists at Atlantic Canada’s Conservation Data Centre (ACCDC) have had another busy and productive year, discovering several new species of flora and fauna in the Maritimes and gathering data that is essential in helping to protect the natural environment.

“It’s been an exciting year for the CDC,” said Sherman Boates, chair of the Sackville-based conservation centre during the group’s annual general meeting earlier this month.

Through their extensive field work in 2011, the staff not only identified a number of new provincial species records of flower fly in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, but also found three plant species, two dragonfly species and a butterfly species never before documented in Nova Scotia. One of those plant species, the Maleberry, was also a new species for Canada and will likely be listed as a federal Species at Risk in the future.

Boates applauded the work of the staff – who have a broad range of expertise in botany, zoology, landscape ecology and forestry – saying their “remarkable amount of knowledge” has really made a difference in the world of conservation.

Botanists Sean Blaney and David Mazerolle made the Maleberry discovery late last summer on a property purchased last year by the Nova Scotia Nature Trust near Springhaven in Yarmouth County.

The Maleberry, a coastal plain shrub, is a member of the blueberry family that can reach heights of 3.5 m (12 feet) and does not produce edible fruit. It is otherwise found in southern Maine and southward through the eastern United States and it joins a suite of 40 other “Atlantic Coastal Plain Flora” species restricted within Canada to the special climatic and environmental conditions of southern Nova Scotia.

Blaney and Mazerolle located a small population of the Maleberry in a swamp on Long Lake.

“It’s one of the best finds we’ve had since I’ve been at the CDC,” said Mazerolle. “It’s a new species for Canada . . . and it’s a good candidate to become a listed species.

During that same trip, Mazerolle and Blaney also found Canada’s third population of the Threatened Water Pennywort, a small population of the provincially-endangered Eastern White Cedar and a large population of Spotted Pondweed, currently under evaluation as a potential provincially-endangered species.

Also last summer, during a plant survey for the Mersey Tobeatic Research Institute, the botanists discovered an extremely rare plant at Shingle Lake Barrens in Nova Scotia – Bluecurls, a member of the mint family.

“This hadn’t ever been found before in Nova Scotia . . . and it’s quite rare in Canada,” said Blaney. “So that was an exciting find.”

He noted the Bluecurls are now a high-priority candidate for federal evaluation under the species of concern list.

John Klymko, zoologist with the conservation data centre, also kept busy in 2011, continuing his efforts on the Maritimes Butterfly Atlas, a five-year citizen science project that was launched in 2010 to help document butterfly occurrences in the Maritimes. The first two years of the effort has produced more than 6,000 records with 80 different butterfly species documented.

Klymko said in 2011, there were a number of spottings of rare species in both New Brunswick and Nova Scotia and also documentation of a significant range expansion for one species in particular, the Salt Marsh Copper.

Populations of the Salt Marsh Copper were detected twice in the Cape Breton area last August, the first time the species was documented that far away from its known range of the Gaspe Peninsula, Chaleur Bay, the Northumberland Coast and coastal areas of PEI.

Klymko said the butterfly atlas project, which is the first comprehensive survey of butterflies ever done in the region, just recently received national coverage on the Weather Network, hopefully helping the ACCDC “reach a whole new demographic” of volunteers who want to participate in the initiative.

Klymko also conducted both Dragonfly and Pollinator surveys last summer, identifying new species of dragonflies in Nova Scotia and new provincial records of flower fly in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, 26 of which were new to the Maritimes.

Also moving forward with research last year was Sarah Robinson, who works in landscape ecology. Robinson conducted a biodiversity assessment of the coastal dune systems of Nova Scotia, the “first data of this type and in this much detail ever done in the province.”

Robinson collected data from 12 different dune systems and 300 plots within those systems. During her research, she came across a number of rare species, including Umbellate Bastard Toadflax and Slender Flatsedge, and also noted the unique conditions of some of the dune systems which were dominated by Bearberry, a species of dwarf shrub, or lichens. She was also able to document the prevalence of exotic species that were of concern, such as Purple Loosestrife and Scotch Broom.

2 thoughts on “Canadian wildlife discoveries

  1. Pingback: Canadian birds report | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Injured Utah baby golden eagle survives wildfire | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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