Fabulous Field Finds 2023

A person outside, holding a plastic container and looking at it.

Let’s See What Staff Discovered

Now that summer is coming to an end, our monitoring, restoration and forestry staff are beginning to pack up their field equipment and prepare for the winter, when they will analyze their summer findings. Field staff find some amazing species of wildlife and capture some incredible photos throughout the summer. Here are just a few of the amazing things staff discovered this season:

Feel Good Moment

In October, our staff found a garter snake looking for refuge in our head office. The snake’s tail was badly injured. CVC staff volunteered their time and brought the snake to a rehabilitation centre. The tail healed beautifully and staff were able to successfully release the snake back into nature by our office in May.

Snake slithering on person’s shoulder.
The average life span of a garter snake is two to three years.

Hungry, Hungry Gull

Staff watched a gull devour an adult sea lamprey along the Credit River. Unlike the native American brook lamprey, the sea lamprey is an invasive, parasitic species that is harmful to native fish in our watershed. 

Bird with an eel-shaped fish in its mouth.
Gulls can eat about 20 percent of their bodyweight.

Say Cheese!

Observing wildlife in the future Jim Tovey Lakeview Conservation Area, has been incredible. We have already monitored dozens of native fish species in the newly constructed wetland, as well as several native insects, bird species and mammals. Staff hide waterproof cameras around the site to capture images of wildlife – and the pictures do not disappoint.

Hawk with wings spread flying towards the camera over wetland.
Red-tailed hawk at Jim Tovey Lakeview Conservation Area.

Turkey Time

Turkey vulture young are so cute with their white fluffy feathers. While on a landowner’s property, CVC staff stumbled upon a turkey vulture nest in a barn. Females generally lay two eggs at a time.

Young bird in a wooden box.
Their wingspan can reach over six feet.
Fluffy bird under a tree branch.
Young turkey vulture. Photo credit: “Turkey vulture”, by brendanboyd, licenced under CC BY 4.0 on iNaturalist.

Thriving Habitats

Part of the work our field staff conducts is visiting pollinator gardens throughout the watershed to make sure they’re properly maintained and thriving. Throughout several visits, staff captured beautiful insects enjoying these landscapes.

Small wooden structure filled with sticks on a post in a garden.
Bee house at our demonstration garden at Jack Darling Park in Mississauga.
Insect sitting on top of flower.
Sweat bee (Bicolored agapostemon) by CVC’s Kyle Swanson.

Beautiful Bald Eagles

Seeing one bald eagle is an amazing experience, but seeing three at one time? That’s a win! While headed into CVC’s head office, staff member Jon Clayton spotted three bald eagles drying out after a morning rain.

Three birds perched on a tree branches.
Bald eagles can have over 7,000 feathers.

More Roots in the Ground

This season, our incredible planting teams planted 41,151 trees, shrubs, wildflowers and grasses across the Credit River Watershed, which included tree planting events, private landowner properties and municipal grounds. Our hard-working staff at Warwick nursery potted 53,150 plants to be grown for future projects. We’re grateful to everyone who helped plant these trees and shrubs – especially our volunteers!

Several shovels in the ground in a field, with a ground of people in the background.
Tree planting events are a great way to connect with your neighbours and community.

Year after year, the Credit River Watershed continues to surprise us. To keep the watershed thriving for generations to come, there’s a lot of work to be done. Learn how you can get involved in programs and activities to improve the health and learn about our watershed.

Learn more the monitoring work we do and about previous fabulous field finds from 2021 and 2022.

Visit our events calendar to get involved in the Credit River Watershed.

Have your own interesting findings from this summer? Share your photos with us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.

By Kimberley Laird, Associate, Marketing and Communications

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