Microplastics & Microfibers, Oh My!

More and more now, we hear the words microplastics and microfibers in the news, in classrooms, and in conversation with friends and family. Beaches covered in plastic bottles and fishing nets, turtles tangled in plastic wrapped, birds that have plastic in their stomachs; the list of plastic-related damage is very long. The plastic problem in

Read More


Picture This: Storytelling through Pictographs

Aanii! Hello! Niibin (summer) is all around us now and it is a beautiful season to be out paddling, hiking, or just generally exploring! There are many amazing things to see while out paddling, but if you’re very lucky you might see something very special: Anishinaabe pictographs. Indigenous peoples across the world have different methods

Read More


Antlers are Awesome

There are two animals in the biosphere that share an awesome feature: antlers! Can you guess which two animals they are? Moose (moozo) and white-tailed deer (waawaashkesh) are the two animals in the biosphere that grow antlers. They are both mammals and are both members of the deer family. Biologists call animals in the deer

Read More


Learning About Leeches

You might be thinking: AHHHHHH LEECHES or EWEEEEEE LEECHES. These plump little creatures get a bad rap. Like all of the animal neighbours in the Biosphere, leeches have some pretty interesting features and once we get to know them – from a distance – we might appreciate them a little more. There are about 700

Read More


Oshkinigig

A Wiigwaas Jiimaan named Oshkinigig

Niibin (summer) is here! With the warm weather and beautiful days, Oshkinigig is ready to get into the water. Oshkinigig is a wiigwaas jiimaan, a birch bark canoe. The Georgian Bay Anishinaabek Youth (GBAY) is a youth-led group who workes to create safe spaces for Indigenous youth to build community and cultural connections. GBAY is

Read More


This one is for the plants!

On the coast of Georgian Bay, like many places, native plants have adapted to survive harsh conditions, from -30 winters to +30 summers. This area is full of unique and diverse animal species that are very special, but it is also home to some pretty amazing plant species. There are too many cool and interesting

Read More


Biting Blackflies

Have you noticed lots of small, biting flies lately? It’s blackfly season in the Georgian Bay Biosphere. Have you ever wondered where all these flies come from? Mother blackflies lay hundreds of eggs in fast-moving, fresh water. The eggs hatch into larvae that live and grow in the water. The blackfly larvae look like bowling

Read More


A Biodiversity Showdown

What is Biodiversity? Biodiversity is the variety of life on earth. Better known as biological diversity, biodiversity can be broken down into bio (life) and diversity (variety). When we talk about the biodiversity of an area (such as Georgian Bay) we are talking about everything from people and other mammals, reptiles, amphibians, birds, plants, fungi,

Read More


How Sweet is the Sugar Bush?

Ziinzibaakwad – Maple Syrup Like a reliable friend, March has once again arrived to help shake off the colds of winter. There are a lot of exciting things happening in March, as spring gets closer and closer every day. The days become longer and warmer, and this can only mean one thing: the arrival of

Read More


The Iconic “Georgian Bay Tree”

Picture a Georgian Bay tree. Did you picture a white pine? I imagine you did! The white pine is the classic Georgian Bay tree. You know the one; its windswept branches arc across the surfaces of paintings, pillows, mugs, and t-shirts in nearly any gift shop or décor store in the Biosphere. In fact, the

Read More


Fuzzy Wonders: Woolly Bears

Even though many of us may be returning to school, that doesn’t mean it’s time to stop exploring the outdoors. It’s around this time of year that one of the coolest and cutest critters starts to crawl around: woolly bear caterpillars! Seeing a woolly bear is considered to be a sign of the changing seasons

Read More


The Coolest Hummers

Meet the tiniest bird in the Biosphere, the Ruby-throated Hummingbird! These amazing little creatures have a lot of attitude and determination, despite their size. We’ve got no time to waste! Let’s get going with some fast facts on the Ruby-throated Hummingbird! Here’s How You Can Help Hummingbirds 1. Hummingbirds like to perch in trees – especially

Read More


Meet the Meteors!

Have you ever made a wish on a falling star? Did you wish for a helpful Kids in the Biosphere blog post about what falling stars really are? I hope so! Let’s meet the meteoroids, meteors, and meteorites… otherwise known as shooting or falling stars! And at the end of the blog you’ll find out how to see an amazing

Read More


Pollination Nation: It’s the Bee’s Knees!

We hear the word pollination more and more now, but what does it actually mean? Pollination is the process of pollen travelling from the male part of the plant to the female part of the plant (or to a different plant) so that the plant can make seeds and fruit. Wait a second! Plants have

Read More


Toad-day’s the Day!

Have you seen a toad in the Biosphere? I’ll bet you have! For some reason, we sometimes hear that toads are yucky and ugly, but once you get to know toads you will learn that they are TOAD-ally awesome animals! Let’s start by clearing up some confusion. Toads are similar to frogs but not exactly

Read More


The Flashy Lives of Lightning Bugs

It’s nighttime and you’re sitting outside around a campfire looking up at the stars and the trees and suddenly you see a tiny blinking light. You think to yourself: did I really just see that? What was that? You see it again and again, then another and another… Are they aliens? Could these lights be

Read More


Eyes See What You Did There

Animal Vision What if I told you that you have the ability to see radiation? When we use our eyes to look around we are detecting one type of radiation. That radiation is light! Light is a type of radiation called electromagnetic radiation (ell-ECK-tro-mag-NET-ick ray-dee-AY-shun). There are other kinds of radiation but the only kind we

Read More


Are You Likin’ the Lichen?

Before you read any further, STOP and look outside. Notice all the life that exists around you from the grass and trees to the insects and animals. How did it get here? When and how was life able to thrive here in the biosphere? Well, it was all made possible by an organism you likely

Read More


Quick Tick Tricks

Ticks are NOT insects! Does that bug you?  Ticks are actually arachnids, just like spiders and mites. Ticks eat the blood of living animals, almost like little mini vampires (minus the cape and spooky castle). Ticks latch on to the skin of their host animal – usually some sort of mammal or bird. It’s called

Read More


LOON-ey Tunes

Picture this… it’s a calm, quiet night and you’re sitting by the shore. What do you see? The stars? The moon? The shapes of pine and oak trees all around? What do you smell? Perhaps a campfire? Now, what do you hear? A loon, right? Chances are you’re imagining the call of a loon. After

Read More


From Garbage to Garden

We all know that littering is bad for the environment. Did you also know “throwing away” our garbage pollutes the earth?  When the garbage truck comes every week, they take the trash to a landfill, where everything is left to breakdown. Putting organic food waste into a landfill does not breakdown properly and can create

Read More


Stories in the Stars

Clear summer nights in the Biosphere are perfect times to go stargazing! If you’ve been stargazing before, you know how amazing it is to lie back, look up, and see a sky full of wonders. If you’ve never gotten the chance before, here’s a helpful guide! Our summer skies are spectacular, but have you ever

Read More


The Buzz on Mosquitoes

Bzz…bzz…bzz…smack! You finally got that mosquito that’s been buzzing around your head all afternoon. Mosquitoes and other ‘pests’ are a Biosphere summer constant – especially at dawn and dusk. They gather blood from people and other animals to feed their eggs, and in some cases can carry disease. We might be tempted to get rid

Read More


The Canadian Shield Rocks

Have you ever heard of the Canadian Shield? The Canadian Shield is the name for a large area of exposed bedrock. The Georgian Bay Biosphere Reserve is on part of the Canadian Shield, which is why there are such interesting and unique landscapes! Rock formations and land forms like the ones in these pictures are

Read More


A Beaver’s Job is Never Done

Beavers are a favourite Canadian icon. We even have them on the nickel! Beavers love water, and while they are slow moving on land, they are super-fast in water and can even hold their breath for up to 15 minutes! Did you know that in Ojibwe the beaver is called “Amik”?  Engineering in the Environment Beavers are

Read More


Why Did the Turtle Cross the Road?

During the warmer months of the year, you may notice turtles crossing the road. Turtles are so slow, and cars are so fast… why would turtles take that risk!? Turtles have been on this land long before cars were and, in some cases, even long before roads. They know that one particular wetland is perfect

Read More


Spidey Senses

Do you ever see spiders and think “ew“? I used to too, but that was before I realized how cool spiders are! Since many spiders don’t have the best eyesight, they often use their “spidey senses” to locate their prey!  What are these “spidey senses“? They are vibrations that spiders can feel through the strands

Read More