The Centre’s slogan “Nature…Discover, Enjoy, Protect” encourages people to get outdoors and appreciate the green spaces available to us in the Ottawa Carleton region. When exploring nature, it is important to do so safely. Following these guidelines will ensure your nature walk is a positive experience.
The best way to avoid contact with plants such as Poison Ivy and Wild Parsnip that can grow along trails is to stay on the trail and avoid picking flowers. Furthermore, being cognisant of their shape is also important (see infographics below). If you are intending to go off the trail, or are looking to be safer, wear long pants and close-toed shoes. The fabric will prevent the sap from coming in contact with your legs. Should contact occur, wash the affected areas with cold water and soap. If a rash develops contact your doctor for further treatment.
Lyme Disease is of concern in the Ottawa region. Lyme disease can be contracted from the bite of an infected black legged tick (Deer Tick). Ticks like to live in long grasses and are prevalent in the Ottawa area. To limit your exposure to ticks, remain on the trail and wear long pants. Long pants can be tucked into tall socks for added protection. Furthermore, the use of insect repellant containing DEET can also deter ticks. Upon completion of your hike, do a quick scan to see if you’ve been bitten. For more information, review the infographic below.
*Click the images below to view them at a larger scale. These infographics were created for use on the Ottawa-Carleton Wildlife Centre trails.
In partnership with TD Park People, the Ottawa-Carleton Wildlife Centre provided free nature resources and activity booklets to the public for an event at Andrew Hayden Park. From July 4-5th people were encouraged to participate in our Explore Nature Near You Event. Participants explored the park and captured their best nature moment for a chance to win binoculars and a field guide!
The event was a great success with activities for all ages. From bingo, to nature riddles, to a Bio Blitz, there were lots of opportunities to learn about urban wildlife.
Need some nature inspiration? Check out some of our favourite nature moments below including a submission from Anita, the winner of our draw!
Anita picking up her binoculars and field guide, she "just loves her regular walks through that park with its variety of wildlife & beautiful scenery!"
Thanks to a generous $8000 grant from the TD Friends of the Environment (TD FEF), the OCWC was able to purchase snowshoes, binoculars, and field materials to allow community groups and families to enjoy safe and sustainable exercise in nature. By connecting with their local environment, participants can become stewards for protecting Ontario’s beautiful Greenbelt and meet many local species like White-Tailed Deer, Black-Capped Chickadees, Red Cardinals, and North American Porcupines. This new lending library will be used for years to come by visiting families, individuals, and community groups like the Girl Guides and Boy Scouts. Thank you, TD FEF!
A beautiful card featuring the acrylic on canvas painting “Fortunate to Have You Here” by Nicole Parent was just one of many in the Artists of Stonebridge 2019 Wildlife & Habitat Painting Collection that was gifted to the Ottawa-Carleton Wildlife Centre (OCWC). Kate MacNeil, the OCWC’s Executive Director, accepted the cards along with a donation to the OCWC at the Artists of Stonebridge’s 10th Anniversary Art Show in December 2019. The focus of the show was to promote the wildlife and habitat in our communities, a perfect fit for the OCWC that has been operating in the Ottawa community since 1987.
The sentiment behind the Collection, according to organizers, is to recognize, “it is essential that humans live in harmony with the natural world. We know, although we often forget, that proximity to nature is an immense benefit to our mental and physical well-being”.
The Artists of Stonebridge is a non-profit organization founded in October 2010. Their vision is to “increase awareness, appreciation and promotion of original art to the community and provide artists with the opportunity to interact and learn from other artists as well as exhibit and sell their artwork in the community”.
The OCWC is so grateful to have the support of the Ottawa community like this honour from the Artists of Stonebridge. The OCWC is committed to educating people about wildlife and helping to foster an appreciation for the natural world and the important role all species play in a healthy ecosystem.