Museum news: The gray whale

Surface feeding gray whale. Photo courtesy Jay Feaver. By contributors James Mackinnon & Iona Kearns Perhaps it’s the sheer size of the ocean that makes it so alluring to most people, or the fact that, while it makes up more than three quarters of the surface of our planet, we know so little about what’s living … Continued

Museum news: Garry Oak ecosystems

Quercus Garryana aka Garry Oak. Photo  Maleea Acker By contributor James Mackinnon Sitting in the lee of the Vancouver Island mountain range, much of the south-east shores of our island are graced by mild climates and relatively low precipitation—a rain shadow effect. These conditions have given rise to different types of forests than the damp, … Continued

VIU Museum of Natural History: Who’s bugging you?

By contributor James Mackinnon Bugs rule the world, and the sooner we realize this the better. But let’s clarify that. What many of us usually refer to as “bugs” probably fall into the phylum Arthropoda (Latin for sectioned-legs), a group that includes spiders, mosquitos, crabs, butterflies, and more than a million other invertebrates who live … Continued

VIU Museum of Natural History: Winter birding

By contributor James Mackinnon The excuses are endless: “The weather is too nasty,” “Everything’s gone away for the winter,” “I just got a sweet Playstation for Christmas.” During the colder months, it’s easy to be deterred from getting out for a hike or an expedition in search of the plant and wildlife the Nanaimo area … Continued

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