Tag Archives: nature

Is This Rabbit City?

The area that we live in now has plenty of wildlife. We’re close to the edge of the city, as well as near a ravine with plenty of trees and a small creek. But running around the neighbourhood, there are many rabbits.


It seems that we see rabbits daily. We even saw four rabbits in one spot. They’re also many different colours. And they are huge. These are not the cute little fluffy ones, these are cat-sized.

They aren’t the only mammals around. Although we haven’t seen any yet, it’s possible to encounter deer, foxes, skunks, and coyotes. We saw a muskrat, though.

Birds are plentiful, too. Lots of ducks (mainly mallard), Canada geese, magpies, crows, pigeons, chickadees, robins, sparrows, and gulls. I’m looking forward to finding my old bird field guide and going birdwatching.

Whet animals live around where you live? Let me know in the comments below.

Advertisements

Spring Is Here

This morning, my wife and I went for a walk in Mill Creek Ravine. It’s definitely spring now. Green leaves and butterflies are only a couple things that are coming out.

  

  

  

One of these days, we’re going to walk the entire length of the ravine, all the way to the North Saskatchewan River.

Has spring sprung (or autumn fallen) where you are?

43 Days to Canada – Amazing Landscapes

It’s now February 16th. Only forty-three days until we leave Japan. The time is so near that it’s feeling real. Still a lot to do, though.

One thing I’m going to start doing is making frequent videos about our move, talking about things we’ve done, things we need to do, and my thoughts of the moment. They’ll be pretty brief, but you’ll get an idea about what’s going on in my mind, as well as find out what the whole process is like.

But for now, I’ll just share with you an article that features some incredibly beautiful, but lesser-known places in Canada. Huffington Post published this a couple years ago. Here’s what you can see:

  • Mount Thor – Wow. The mountains in Nunavut look amazing
  • Abraham Lake – Incredible in winter. This is in my home province of Alberta.
  • Manicouagan Crater – This is probably one of the most famous craters in the world. It looks amazing from space.
  • Pingualuit Crater – This is a relatively fresh crater in Quebec. Looks quite recent.
  • Pingos in the Northwest Territories – Very interesting hills that add to the unique tundra landscape.
  • The Sleeping Giant – That’s a massive hunk of rock rising above the surrounding land in Ontario.
  • The Bay of Fundy – Highest tides in the world. Would love to see that.
  • Nahanni National Park in Northwest Territories – This place looks incredible.
  • Spotted Lake in British Columbia – I’d love to see this in person. It looks like nothing I’ve ever seen before.
  • The sky in Saskatchewan – The clouds on the prairies are amazing. It’s similar in Edmonton.
  • Gros Morne National Park – Wow. That looks like an amazing view reminiscent of Iceland.
  • Ice Caves – Plenty of these, including one in Jasper! That’s not far from Edmonton.

What would you like to see?

Signs of Spring

It may only be early February, but that’s when the signs of spring appear in the Tokyo area of Japan. This morning, we went for a walk to see Mt. Fuji, but it was too hazy.

20160209-231535-83735549.jpg

So we focused on what was around us. We were near the Fujisawa campus of Keio University, one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in Japan, and we were able to enjoy nature.

20160209-231732-83852748.jpg

The Kawazu cherry trees have started blooming, and we were also greeted by some mejiro, or Japanese white-eye.

20160209-231830-83910977.jpg

20160209-231847-83927375.jpg

We were also surprised by a red-roofed shrine, Utsumochi Shrine.

20160209-232002-84002752.jpg

20160209-232020-84020421.jpg

The cherry trees weren’t the only things blooming. The Japanese plum trees continue to bloom, too.

20160209-232109-84069214.jpg

This week is going to warm up significantly. On average, February is the coldest month here. However, the forecast for Saturday is 18 degrees and cloudy. Valentine’s Day will be a balmy 23 degrees and rainy. Very surprising!

Are you stuck in the middle of winter, or is spring beginning to show itself where you live? Or are you in summer in the Southern Hemisphere?

Mission Statement – Passions and Beliefs

If you haven’t already done so, I recommend you read the following posts:

And now that you’re all caught up, it’s time for the fourth and final part of my blog Mission Statement. While those three posts talk about what you will see regularly on this blog in the future, this post will talk about some more behind the scenes things, passions of mine, and what drives me.

Education

I’m a big supporter of good education. As an English teacher and a former student, I believe in a good education. I strongly support the sciences, and think that they are an incredibly important part of education. They are what drive industry, innovation, health care, and research. Without these, society would stagnate. I’m extremely disappointed in how educators are regarded these days, and think that they deserve a lot of respect. They are what shape the youth of today and the future leaders of the world.

I’m also against misinformation by groups who deny responsible scientific research, such as anti-vaccination groups, climate change deniers, and creationists who want to take evolution out of science classes. Ignorance is not responsible education.

YouTube

Elsewhere on the internet, I’m active in making videos for my YouTube channel. At the moment, I have a huge number of Japan videos to edit and post, but in the future, I will discuss a lot about books, movies, and TV, as well as science. It’s a bit of a geeky channel. Whenever possible, I’ll be doing travel videos. I highly recommend subscribing.

Politics

In the past, I wasn’t into politics much. These days, I’m constantly watching what’s going on with the Canadian government, as well as other governments. I want to become more active politically, but not through this blog. I’m an Albertan, and my province is the most conservative in Canada. However, I am certainly not conservative. I’ve primarily been a Liberal Party supporter, and I have voted for them before.

Environment

I think this goes hand in hand with education. Good science education allows people to see the world as it is with an unbiased view. I love nature, and I wish to protect it. I’m all for research into alternative energy, and have the greatest hope in nuclear fusion. It’s clean and nearly limitless. I also support hybrid cars and advances in electric vehicles. Having lived in Japan for more than ten years, I’ve come to appreciate the train system here, and would love to see an all electric high speed rail system constructed in Canada, as well as extensive commuter rail systems in the major cities. And of course, let’s plant a lot of trees! I love homes that have trees and greenery.

While you may or may not see some of these things in my blog, I have mentioned them before. They won’t be a major part of the posts I make, but you can see aspects of them in my attitude and even my writing.

So, thank you to everyone for following this blog and reading it. I appreciate you all. You are also one of the biggest reasons I blog. The coming year will be exciting and full of new experiences, lots of writing, and hopefully a lot of books and movies. If you have any comments or questions, please leave them in the comments below.

Good-bye, National Geographic

So, it happened.  Rupert Murdoch has laid off the staff of National Geographic. They’re gone.  All gone. The award-winning staff no longer works for National Geographic. Editors, writers, photographers, all of them gone.

Who is it that thought selling National Geographic to Rupert Murdoch was a good idea? He’s destroyed it. They will no longer be pro-science, they’ll be a way for Murdoch to spread his anti-science garbage. Very sad day.

Update: Thanks to that above article, it made it sound much worse than it was. Here’s something more informative.

It’s still a massive cut in staff, including a lot of the fact-checking staff. While it’s not good-bye, I still think what’s going to happen is a reduction in the quality of the magazine. I’m hoping I’m wrong. I really want to be wrong.