Last night we were treated to an incredible presentation by Peter Middleton, Director of Ontario Nature. Peter taught for 35 years as an Outdoor Educator, sharing nature’s mysteries with students of all ages. He also assisted with Sauble Beach and Oliphant plover recovery programs since 2007. Peter reaches out now as a speaker to share the message of conservation in a world that finds less interest, or understanding of the natural environment and the importance of its protection.
Peter’s presentation focused on the beauty that surrounds us in this region. He walked his audience through the seasons and scenery of the Bruce Peninsula, highlighting the uniqueness of the area. From fens to fire-dependent prairies, he talked about the range of ecosystems along the escarpment and coastlines. He shared his beautiful photos of endemic orchids, primitive ferns, rare herpetofauna and rugged landscapes. We are so lucky to have these wonders in our backyard. In taking us on this journey with him, Peter left us with an appreciation for the natural world and with an optimistic outlook for the future. Peter finished off with a poem he had written about the Piping Plovers and the work that the volunteers do for them, which was a touching tribute to the birds and embryos that we lost this year and to the efforts of the monitors.
Next week we will wrap up the Beach Talk 2016 speaker series with a presentation by David McLeish, recently retired Lake Manager from the Ministry of Natural Resources & Forestry. His presentation entitled “The Evolution of an Ecological Ethic” will explore the colonization of the planet by humans, in the context of our relationship with its finite resources, how we have chosen to exploit them and how our environmental and ecological ethics continue to evolve. This promises to be a thought-provoking and captivating topic. We hope you can join us to finish off the season!