Every fall and winter, Nature Manitoba offers a series of indoor presentations featuring guest speakers on relevant, local, nature-related topics.
They are usually on Monday evenings at 7:30pm, and take place at the Franco-Manitoban Cultural Centre (340 Provencher Blvd) on the second floor (Salle Antoine-Gaborieau). Admission is only $3 ($2 for members).
The best reason to get off the couch and learn something new!
Monday, October 6, 2014 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by Dr. Diana Bizecki Robson, Curator of Botany, Manitoba Museum
***NOTE*** Due to construction, the room for October 6 has been changed to the Jean-Paul-Aubry Hall on the main level. Directional signs will be posted. You can enter the Jean-Paul-Aubry Hall from the outside, i.e. you do not need to go through the building.
News that the world’s pollinators are in danger has received much attention in the media lately. But what is pollination and why is it so important? In this reflective lecture, Dr. Diana Bizecki Robson will talk about her ten years of research on pollination in Manitoba’s endangered prairies, and what she has learned from her patient observation of life. You’ll hear stories about the amazing and morbid life cycles of some of the most important pollinators of Canada’s rarest plants. Did you know that the pollinator of the rare Western Silvery Aster is a bee fly that parasitizes grasshoppers? Or that some insects hide on goldenrod flowers so they can paralyse and consume the pollinating insects that come to it for nectar? Photographs of Manitoba’s prairie ecosystems, wildflowers and insect pollinators will illustrate and enhance this lecture. You will come away with a new appreciation of an intricate world that most people simply pass by!
Monday, October 20, 2014 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by Dr. James Hare, Dept. of Biological Sciences, University of Manitoba
Jim Hare has specialized in the study of animal behaviour for over 30 years, focusing on ants, moths, fireflies, squirrels, bats, birds, fish, snakes and humans. With his students, Jim has made intriguing discoveries regarding how Richardson's ground squirrels – a species that humans often take for granted and target for extermination – communicate within their colonies to cope with their many predators. He will show us evidence of the exacting abilities of these squirrels to broadcast and decode information regarding predators, as well as cognitive skills we normally deny non-human animals. Squirrels recognize alarm callers as individuals, allowing them to count the number of individuals calling, and to track the movement of predators within their colony by integrating information from multiple signalers. They also base their response to individual callers on how reliable those individuals have been in the past! Upon hearing what these common prairie animals can do, you'll undoubtedly have newfound respect for these and the other animals we share the world with!
Monday, November 3, 2014 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by Dr. Terry Galloway, Dept. of Entomology, University of Manitoba
Terry Galloway has been studying ectoparasites in Manitoba for 35 years. In the past twenty years, he has worked closely with wildlife rehabilitation centres in Winnipeg to expand our knowledge of the startling diversity of these remarkable arthropods. Fleas, lice, flies, mites and ticks typically live on the external surfaces of their hosts, but among them are those that live in the pouches of pelicans, and inhabit the nasal cavities and feather shafts of birds. In this presentation, you will be introduced to these highly specialized organisms; you will learn a little about what they do and how they live together with their hosts. It's a guarantee you will never look at birds and mammals the same way again!
Monday, November 17, 2014 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by Martha Barwinski, Urban Forestry Branch, City of Winnipeg
More details on this presentation will appear here soon, and will be sent with our regular email notices closer to the program date.
Monday, December 1, 2014 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by Brad Carey, Rudolf Koes, Peter Taylor, and Gene Walz
In September 2013, four Nature Manitoba members (Brad Carey, Rudolf Koes, Peter Taylor, and Gene Walz) spent three weeks exploring some of the wild places of southern Brazil. The emphasis was on birding, with over 400 species identified, but we also came back with memories of friendly people, great food, some challenging hikes in spectacular scenery, crazy drivers, and fabulous wildlife sightings beyond the birds. We even got to see a soccer match in the jungle! Peter, Rudolf and Gene will share images and anecdotes from their adventure.
Monday, January 5, 2015 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by John Morgan, Prairie Habitats, Inc.
Donated to the Canadian Department of National Defence in 1911 by Sir Henry Pallot, the St. Charles Ranges became a training centre for soldiers heading to the battlefields of WWI, WWII, Korea and Afghanistan. This little known 400+ hectare gem with a view of Winnipeg's skyline has been completely protected by military personnel for over a century. The St. Charles Ranges is the largest tall grass prairie remaining in the central Red River Valley. Several biological studies have been undertaken there, with vegetation and wildlife data dating back to the 1870’s. This includes some of Canada’s first aerial photo vegetation maps from 1929, insect species new to science and nearly 200 native plants. Biologist John Morgan will reveal the fascinating history of this amazing site, and tell us about its uncertain future, as development plans threaten its very existence.
Monday, January 19, 2015 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by Dr. Robert Currie, Dept. of Entomology, University of Manitoba
Dr. Robert Currie, Dept. of Entomology, University of Manitoba, will speak to us about bees and the stresses they face in Manitoba and elsewhere. More details to follow.
Monday, February 2, 2015 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by Dr. Steve Ferguson, Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans (Freshwater Institute, University of Manitoba)
Dr. Steve Ferguson, Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans (Freshwater Institute, University of Manitoba) will present on killer whales in the Arctic, including those that visit the Hudson Bay coast in Manitoba. More details to follow.
Monday, March 2, 2015 at 7:30 pm.
Presented by Dr. Kevin Campbell, Dept. of Biological Sciences, University of Manitoba
Dr. Kevin Campbell, Dept. of Biological Sciences, University of Manitoba will talk about how DNA technology can be used to learn how the bodies of long-extinct species such as mammoths once functioned. More details to follow.
Monday, March 16, 2015 at 7:00 pm.
Presented by Christian Artuso, Manitoba Breeding Bird Atlas Coordinator
(NOTE: Presentation to follow A.G.M. which starts at 7 pm)
From 2010 to 2014, over 1,000 skilled and dedicated volunteers travelled to almost every corner of Manitoba in an unparalleled effort to complete a comprehensive survey of the distribution and relative abundance of all bird species that breed in the province. This volunteer army donated over 40,000 hours of survey effort and completed over 36,000 point counts, summing to a staggering total of over 300,000 records of 299 species, including five species confirmed as breeding in Manitoba for the first time. These data will redefine our understanding of many Manitoba birds. We will discuss some of the highlights and interesting findings and swap a story or two of the many trials and tribulations along the route to this extraordinary success.