I was fortunate to spend a few days in Ontario’s magnificent Algonquin Park recently and we had some wonderful wildlife sightings. The highlight was a close encounter with a female moose as we canoed up the Amable du Fond river from North Tea Lake back to the put-in. We knew we were in for a [...]
Disney, in the movie Bambi, had a great word for it: Twitterpated (before the days of social media, of course). With melting snow and warm weather comes natural desires among many species to start the cycle of life over again. Among red squirrels in the trees above, formerly hostile male and female neighbours react to [...]
I know it’s not exactly up north, but a recent drive by Pearson Airport on the 401 reminded me again of nature’s resilience. In addition to the red-tailed hawk posed majestically on the airport sign (the hawks are common along highway corridors), I was surprised to see a couple of white-tailed deer grazing on a [...]
Fox and coyote breeding season comes in late January and early February. Competing male foxes go nose to nose in screaming matches until one backs down. Mates remain together to raise their young born in March or April. The family stays together until the fall. Foxes typically live up to 12 years in the wild, [...]
The cold weather we’re currently having can help deer. Mild weather followed by a freeze can leave a crust on the snow thick enough to support deer, who take the opportunity to browse on previously unreachable vegetation. A thinner crust may make progress difficult for them but support the wolves at their heels.
In January or February, when females are in estrus, beaver couples exit their lodgings — which may also be occupied by the previous year’s offspring — and swim attentively together. Without further preliminaries, the male clasps his partner, moves aside her paddled tail and slides around her so that they are both turned slightly sideways. [...]
Moose ring in the new year by dropping their antlers around this time, in late December and early January. Deer may keep their horns till February. Discarded antlers are gnawed by mice, hares, porcupines and other vegetarians to obtain calcium and salt, in short supply during winter.