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PLEASE NOTE: This web page contains the most up-to-date information on events. Please check it regularly for changes or additions to events. The Club's Facebook group and Twitter account (@OttawaFieldNat) will also be used to announce last-minute changes to events.

We expect to hold several weather- and year-dependent events that are not included in Trail & Landscape and will only be announced at the last minute via our website, Facebook and Twitter. These include seasonal events such as Snowy Owl viewing, the spring Snow Goose spectacle, Eardley Eagles and Mudpuppy Night.

Please read
Guidelines for participants on field trips

Check out the web site of the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists for more local events.

The OFNC's Events Committee plans an extensive program of monthly meetings, workshops, day trips, and longer excursions for the education and interest of our members.

Almost every weekend all year round, you can join a knowledgeable nature buff on an excursion to one of the many conservation areas in our region. Learn to identify some of the hundreds of birds that frequent our lakes, fields, and forests; wade through a marsh searching for amphibians; or take a leisurely stroll with fellow nature lovers.

Complete details of all the activities can be found in our quarterly newsletter Trail & Landscape, which is free to members.

All outings

Field trips to natural areas in our region and beyond take place all year round. OFNC events are for members only. Prospective members interested in attending should contact the trip leader in advance. For some events, participation is limited and members will be given priority. Times given for events are departure times. Please arrive earlier, as leaders start promptly. If you need a ride, please contact the leader.

Please bring a lunch on full-day trips and dress according to the weather forecast and activity. Binoculars and/or spotting scopes are essential on all birding trips. Unless otherwise stated, transportation will be by car pool.

Trip waiver

There can be risks associated with any recreational pursuit. Before you participate in nature walks and similar outdoor activities, we will ask you to read and sign a statement in which you assume the risk of the activity and release the OFNC from liability for any loss, damage or injury, however caused and whether or not contributed to by the OFNC’s negligence. This assumption of risk and release includes any minors accompanying you.

Monthly meetings

Our monthly meetings are be held on the second Tuesday of every month except July and August in the K.W. Neatby Building, Salon B, at 960 Carling Avenue. There is ample free parking in the lot on the west side of Maple Drive by Carling Ave., immediately to the east of the main entrance to the Neatby Building. Details below.

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Events oriented to all ages

Kids are welcome on all of our trips. We have highlighted particular hikes as "oriented to all ages" as these are most likely to be enjoyed by typical children. Depending on your child(ren)'s interests and stamina, please feel free to bring them along on any events. For events tailored to kids, check out the Macoun Field Club.

Sunday, October 9, 8 a.m. to noon
*oriented to all ages*
Leader: Roy John
Meet: Lincoln Fields Shopping Centre, northeast corner of parking lot, Richmond Road at Assaly Road, near Pizza Pizza

Stop or stops along the Ottawa River, depending on what has been sighted and where, to look for Fall migrants. This is a rain or shine walk, so dress for the weather. Bring binoculars, a scope if you have one, a drink and a snack.

Tuesday, 11 October, 7 pm social; 7:30 pm presentation
Speaker: Justin Peter
Location: Salon B, K.W. Neatby Building, Central Experimental Farm, 960 Carling Avenue

The Galapagos Islands are often touted as a laboratory of evolution by natural selection, and some of the archipelago's birds are among the best-studied organisms anywhere. In this illustrated talk, Justin will help us get acquainted with some of these birds. We'll see what they look like and how they behave, as well as gain insights into their origins through some of the latest research findings stemming from decades of research.

Monthly meetings are open to the general public.

Thursday, 20 October, 7-8:30 p.m.
Presenter: Greg Froude
Location: Fletcher Wildlife Garden Interpretation Centre

Greg is a Carleton University graduate student in earth sciences who has experience leading field trips as a teaching assistant with both Memorial University of Newfoundland and Carleton University. As the former Geological Association of Canada-Newfoundland Division vice-president he was expected to give public outreach lectures and field trips about local eastern Newfoundland Paleozoic palaeontology. He also has 13 years of experience giving lectures as an interpreter and resident geologist at the Johnson Geo Centre in St. John's. Now, having lived in Ottawa for a year, he hopes to bring his previous experiences as a passionate lecture to introduce a broad-spectrum view to the discipline of palaeontology and highlight the paleo-environmental history of Ottawa using photos and information collected over the past year.

Sunday, 23 October, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Leaders: Greg Froude and Martha Farkas
Meet: W. Erskine Johnston Public School, 50 Varley Dr., Kanata

This site is a wonderful exposure to Precambrian shield metamorphic paragneiss with various generations of both mafic and felsic igneous intrusions. After examining this "basement rock" the participants will visit other sites representative of different layers of sedimentary rock which accumulated in the various paleoenvironments that existed in Ottawa during the Cambrian to Ordovician. Participants will get introduced to, discuss and apply various Earth Sciences topics including paleontology, sedimentology and stratigraphy, mineralogy, as well as basic metamorphic and igneous petrology. All sites go ahead regardless of weather. Bring a lunch, something to drink, dress for the weather and wear comfortable walking shoes/boots.

Tuesday, 8 November, 7 pm social; 7:30 pm presentation
Speaker: John Alexander
Location: Salon B, K.W. Neatby Building, Central Experimental Farm, 960 Carling Avenue

John Alexander and Peter Kaellgren began exploring nature together in 2003. A suggestion from friends had them looking for wild orchids after a visit to Purdon Conservation Area in 2011. In their quest to document the wild orchids of Ontario, they have found many other unusual and intriguing plants. In Weird, Wild and Wonderful - Carnivores, Parasites and other unusual plants John and Peter will introduce you to some of our unique botanical curiosities. And the Wonderful? Of course it will be orchids.

Monthly meetings are open to the general public.

Sunday, 13 November, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Leader: Owen Clarkin
Meet: Gillies Grove main entrance at the west end of Ottawa Street, around 100 m west of Harrington Street. Coordinates: 45.439221, -76.358559

Gillies Grove in Arnprior has the distinction of being one of the few old-growth forests in Ontario containing an original stand of our provincial tree: White Pine (Pinus strobus). Full sized pines in the range of 110'-140' tall are the highlight of this small forest, and many impressive specimens of other trees such as Sugar Maple, Hemlock, etc. are also to be found. This event will focus on showing not only the magnificent large specimens of various trees present, but also highlight the biodiversity located in this relatively small woodlot at the edge of the Ottawa district. Bring a lunch and something to drink. This is a rain or shine outing, so dress appropriately.

Tuesday, 13 December, 7 pm social; 7:30 pm presentation
Speaker: Roy John
Location: Salon B, K.W. Neatby Building, Central Experimental Farm, 960 Carling Avenue

Join Roy and Stephanie on a trip along Mexico's Baja coast into the Sea of Cortez looking for whales and other marine animals. While the land is arid and life is sparse, the sea is rich in plankton and attracts birds, fish, turtles, pinnipeds - and whales. Some species use the warm coastal waters to give birth. Now we have stopped slaughtering for profit, these giant animals have become friendly, allowing for close, personal encounters.

Monthly meetings are open to the general public.

Tuesday, 10 January, 7 pm social; 7:30 pm presentation
Speaker: Roy John
Location: Fletcher Wildlife Garden Interpretive Centre

The Council for 2017 will be elected at this meeting. There will be a brief review of the activities in 2016 and a statement of the Club's finances will be given. This is an opportunity to meet most of the Club's executive and the chairs of the various committees and to find out what makes your Club tick.

Monthly meetings are open to the general public.

Saturday, 14 January, 7-10 p.m.
*oriented to all ages*
Leaders: Barry Cottam and Hume Douglas
Location: K.W. Neatby Building, 960 Carling Ave.

If you take natural history photos, this is your opportunity to share some of your images with fellow members. The mix of different topics and voices makes for an enjoyable evening. Contributions may be 7-10 minutes long. We can handle most digital presentations (images on a flash-drive), and even conventional slides (with some warning please). We encourage presenters to speak about their images. Please contact Hume Douglas (humedgl (at) gmail.com) or Barry Cottam (b.cottam (at) rogers.com) so that we can organize the presentations.

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This page was revised on 9 October 2016
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