In 2022 Island Nature Trust (INT) was awarded funding from RBC Foundation through RBC Tech for Nature to implement a technology-based project, “LandSteward: Artificial Intelligence for Island Community Conservation.” Through this project INT collaborated with Korotu Technology Inc. (Korotu) to create, launch, and pilot “LandSteward” – a cutting edge technology utilizing remote sensing data and artificial intelligence driven analysis tools to monitor changes in the landscape – allowing INT to explore ways that technology can help the organization achieve its vision of a network of protected areas across Prince Edward Island.
Celebrating a true Island steward
Prince Edward Island has lost a great champion of our land and water with the passing of Dr. John Andrew of Charlottetown (East Royalty) on January 24th. John learned the importance of soil and water quality on the family’s multi-generational, mixed farm and Andrew’s Mills property. He used this knowledge and advocated for better stewardship, trail development, and enjoyment of nature in both Halifax and Charlottetown.
Women and Girls in Science
It’s no secret that Island Nature Trust relies on incredible scientists to help communicate our mission and vision and shape the work that happens in our Natural Areas, but did you know that the majority of the scientists who work at INT are women?
Mother Tree Initiative
In response to the damage created by post-tropical storm Fiona, and the anticipated long recovery process for INT’s forested areas, the Trust has recently launched an initiative aimed at protecting and stewarding important native seed trees. Through the Mother Tree Initiative we are asking individuals and businesses to sponsor an identified seed tree in one of our natural areas. These trees, with their proven DNA, will be instrumental in the natural regeneration of their respective immediate landscapes, not to mention great seed providers for nurseries dedicated to ensuring a steady supply of native species for planting.Read more
2022 Bank Swallow Review
Bank swallows (Riparia riparia) are insectivorous songbirds with a distinctive dark brown breast band separating their brown upperparts from their white underparts. Known for their fast, agile flights, these small passerines can be seen buzzing acrobatically through the air along Prince Edward Island’s coasts during the spring and summertime. Bank swallows nest colonially in sandstone cliffs, till bluffs, high sand dunes, and sand pits. As they fly over nearby meadows, wetlands, and agricultural grasslands they forage on insects like beetles, wasps, bees, flying ants, and mayflies. Based on this feeding strategy, bank swallows belong to a guild of birds called aerial insectivores. Like many aerial insectivores, bank swallow populations in Canada are declining due to threats contributing to the loss of their breeding and foraging habitats: land use changes and associated agricultural intensification, and the practice of shoreline armouring. Bank swallow may also be indirectly impacted by pesticide use, which reduces the abundance and availability of their insect prey. In recognition of these threats, bank swallow was listed as a threatened species under the Species at Risk Act (SARA) in 2017.Read more
Buote family donates legacy upland hardwood forest in New Glasgow
It’s a crisp fall morning. The leaves crunching under our feet betray the silence as Rowena Lawlor and Faren Buote accompany me into the Buote Heritage Woods Natural Area in New Glasgow. The stand of old white pine trees greeting us at the entrance to the trail have a stoic presence. The forest is looking unusually skeletal for this time of year thanks to the recent destruction of Hurricane Fiona. Only a few isolated red and amber patches are visible, indicating some leafed branches were spared the intense winds that tore through the rest of the canopy not long ago.
‘This is the spot where my siblings and I came across a large owl last year,’ says Rowena, one of eight siblings who – as a family – donated the woods to Island Nature Trust in 2021. Her voice crackles with emotion. ‘Walking together in the woods it suddenly appeared ahead of us in the trees. It felt like the owl was our mother Clarice proudly looking down on us. She would have been so happy to know that this land is now protected, forever’.
Thanking nature in the wake of post-tropical storm Fiona
‘It could have been worse!’ This is the sentiment lingering in the minds of many Islanders after Hurricane Fiona hit the Island as a powerful post-tropical storm on September 23-24, 2022. Those who saw iconic sand dunes disappear and swaths of forested areas flattened by the winds witnessed the immediate impacts of one of the most damaging events in recent Island history. Nevertheless, the team at Island Nature Trust is striving for a more positive outlook and a regenerative way forward that can give hope to all Islanders.Read more
Farmland Birds Program – 2022 Season In Review
As the summer comes to an end, so does our Farmland Birds program. This program is a partnership with the provincial department of Environment, Energy and Climate Action, as well as the federal program for Species at Risk Partnerships on Agricultural Lands.Read more
Fluttery new beer launched by Lone Oak Brewery in partnership with INT aims to raise awareness for the endangered Monarch butterfly
On Thursday, July 21, 2022, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature announced that the Monarch butterfly has been place on the international endangered list. Coincidentally, Lone Oak Brewery in partnership with Island Nature Trust are today launching a limited-edition beer in tribute of the iconic species.Read more
Island Nature Trust showcases never-before-seen drone footage of recently acquired natural areas
To celebrate the record-breaking success of last years Saving Our Island campaign, the Trust is launching a series of short videos revealing a birds-eye view and first glimpse of the natural areas acquired in 2021. The purchase of these ecologically rich properties was only made possible because of the generosity of Islanders.Read more