Published on Tue, 12/19/2017 by Nature Conservancy of Canada

Conservation Volunteers 2017: Another year for the books!

Each year, the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is astonished at how much time and effort our volunteers across the country contribute. From removing invasive species in Boisé Papineau, Quebec, to conducting dragonfly inventories in Ontario’s Carden Alvar, much of the stewardship work that happens on NCC’s nature reserves is achieved through the support of dedicated volunteers. By December 2017, more than 200 volunteer events, engaging close to 2,750 Canadians, contributed close to 13,200 hours of action dedicated to nature.

“We’re so lucky to have an amazing community of volunteers giving their time and expertise to conserve Canada’s natural places,” said Micheline Khan, NCC’s conservation engagement coordinator “Every year they go above and beyond to have a measurable impact on conservation in their communities.”

Read some highlights and staff favourites from this year’s volunteer season:

Alberta: BC’s conservation and engagement coordinator Travis Muir’s favourite Conservation Volunteers (CV) memory this year took place on NCC’s Frayn property in Alberta. After CVs in Alberta pulled page wire on the Frayn property, they had the opportunity to listen to Peter Sherrington, director of research at the Rocky Mountain Eagle Research Foundation, discuss the North American migration of golden eagles. Volunteers also had the great fortune to witness 30 golden eagles during the peak of their migration!

Saskatchewan: Conservation science coordinator/GIS Sarah Ludlow’s favourite 2017 CV memory was of a young volunteer at Saskatchewan’s Old Man on His Back (OMB) event this past August. This young CV assembled a bat box almost entirely by himself and became very proficient as the day went on. Volunteers built 12 bat boxes, installing two of them at OMB.

NCC was fortunate to have bat expert Joseph Poissant attend the event and use his recording equipment. He documented four different species of bats in the yard at OMB, including endangered little brown bat.

British Columbia: Conservation Volunteers removed invasive Scotch broom from the provincially-significant coastal sand dune ecosystem on James Island.

Manitoba: Volunteers teamed up with NCC staff and the Manitoba Important Bird Areas in western Manitoba for a bioblitz. CVs inventoried more than 10,000 birds, representing 122 species, for a comprehensive survey of the wetlands, forests and grassland around the Oak Lake Sandhills.

Ontario: Volunteers documented more than 1,700 butterflies in Ontario’s Rice Lake Plains, to help with stewardship initiatives.

Quebec: CVs removed more than 500 common buckthorn plants in the Boisé Papineau region in Laval.

New Brunswick: Volunteers cleared two trails, Black Beach Trail and Five Fathom Hole Trail, on the Musquash Estuary, New Brunswick.

Newfoundland and Labrador: CVs collected 1,400 pounds of debris along the shores of Sandy Point — the largest amount ever collected during the annual Sandy Point beach sweep.

Nova Scotia: In only three hours, volunteers planted 500 trees along the Nova Scotia provincial border as part of NCC’s Acadian Forest Restoration Project.

Prince Edward Island: Volunteers picked up an incredible 2,300 pounds of garbage along the shores of the Percival River Nature Reserve on Prince Edward Island. These included 28 tires, hundreds of pieces of buoys, rope and netting, plastic water bottles and much more.

NCC is grateful for all of the support that our Conservation Volunteers have given us to help achieve our conservation goals in the communities where we work across the country.

Visit our blog Land Lines for a great collection of stories written by Conservation Volunteers.

The 2018 season will launch during National Volunteer Week, April 15–21, 2018. Mark your calendars and remember to visit our website ( for next year’s schedule of events.


conservation_volunteers_get_a_peek_at_migrating_golden_eagles_photo_by_ncc.jpgConservation Volunteers get a peek at migrating golden eagles (Photo by NCC) (JPG)1.62 MB
young_conservation_volunteer_building_a_bat_box._photo_by_ncc.jpgYoung Conservation Volunteer building a bat box (Photo by NCC) (JPG)5.77 MB