On Thursday evening Jan. 18th the Midland-Penetanguishene Field Naturalists held their January meeting on Zoom.  Our amazing guest speaker was Claudette Sims of the Canadian Coalition for Invasive Plant Regulation (CCIPR).  Click on the following link to see the recording of the meeting and Claudette’s presentation. 

The results are in from the MPFN Christmas Bird Count 

Saturday Dec. 16, 2023.  

Thanks to our long-serving CBC coordinator David Schandlen for organizing and compiling the count
This year we set records for:
Highest number of species on the count: 64 plus 2 other taxa (hawk species and gull species); previous record 58 species plus 3 other taxa in 2012, 2021 and 2022.
Highest number of individual birds counted: 8,348 previous record 6,771 in 2022
And perhaps most importantly –
Highest number of volunteers involved in the count: 47 previous record 42 in 2022
Read all the details

Results of the 2022 MPFN

Christmas Bird Count and Christmas Party

We set a record in this year’s count for our club’s signature bird. 153 counted.

The results are in!

This was the 123rd edition of the annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count and the 36th year that our club, the Midland-Penetanguishene Field Naturalists, have organized the count locally.  Our first count was in 1980.  Our count circle was a little different from the current one in the years from 1980 to 1984.  There was a brief hiatus while things were reorganized.  Then the local count resumed in 1987, using the current circle centering on Wyebridge, and it has been run every year since then, Covid be damned!

Congratulations to our Count Coordinator David Schandlen for organizing another successful count.  I think David has lost track of the number of years he’s been doing this, but it’s been a long time!

Bill 23 Spells Disaster for Farmlands, Conservation Authorities
Wetlands and Natural Heritage

On October 25th, the Government of Ontario tabled Bill 23, the More Homes Built Faster Act, 2022, an omnibus bill proposing sweeping changes to the province’s natural heritage and land use planning legislation and policy. Overall, Bill 23 and associated policies remove and weaken environmental protections and diminish the role of Ontarians in land use planning and decision-making.

Ontarians of all political stripes should be deeply concerned by proposed legislative or regulatory changes that would:

  1. Remove requirements regarding public meetings on certain planning matters.  
  2. Remove your right to appeal planning decisions.  
  3. Remove the power of conservation authorities (CAs) to regulate or prohibit development that negatively impacts wetlands, rivers or streams.  
  4. Prohibit CAs from entering into agreements with municipalities to provide expert review of planning applications.  
  5. Limit CAs right to appeal land use planning decisions.  
  6. Require CAs to identify conservation authority owned or controlled lands that could support housing development.  
  7. Eliminate the role of seven regional municipalities in planning matters, thereby compromising coordinated efforts to protect farmland and natural areas, determine optimal locations for development and infrastructure, and efficiently deliver municipal services. 

Bill 23 and the accompanying policy changes spell disaster for the farmland and natural areas that sustain us. If passed, these changes will set land use planning back decades and will stymie societal efforts to address climate change and biodiversity loss.

Please join Ontario Nature in opposing the changes proposed and demanding that 1) all amendments likely to weaken the protection of farmland and natural heritage be withdrawn; and 2) the role of the public, CAs and regional municipalities in environmental planning and decision-making be retained and upheld.


The Midland-Penetanguishene Field Naturalists have prepared and submitted a joint statement to the Standing Committee of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario. Special thanks to Kate Harries for her quick and thorough efforts in preparing our submission.

You can read our submission by following the link below.

MIDLAND PENETANGUISHENE FIELD NATURALISTS – Bill 23 Submission to Standing Committee

You can also stand up for nature – literally.

Come and join our rally on Sunday November 20th

We have a really special MPFN Club Outing coming up this Sunday, Nov. 20th.  Let’s let the politicians know if they don’t get rid of Bill 23 and stop their assault on nature, it will be 23-Skidoo for them at the next election!

The results from Midland-Penetanguishene Field Naturalists’ first ever municipal election candidates questionnaire are in!

Read More:

MPFN has Partnered with the
Canadian Coalition for Invasive Plant Regulation
As Partners, we’ll help spread the word. Educate the public and political representatives about the need for better regulation of plants in the horticultural trade. We’ll proudly display our logo on the CCIPR. We’re already developing plans to reach out to, not only club members but the general public and in particular, local elected officials, Stay tuned!

Read the details here