Species of the Week: The Northern Watersnake

This week’s #SpeciesOfTheWeek is the Northern Watersnake! Sometimes mistaken for Gray Ratsnakes, watersnakes are common at Murphys Point Provincial Park. One way to tell them apart is their colouration – ratsnakes are black with beige or white blotches and a bright white chin, while watersnakes are brown, with faint reddish bands. They can often be found swimming in lakes and rivers, hanging out by the shores of wetlands, or sunning themselves on rocks and logs. We often spot them at the Black Creek Marsh on the Lally Trail (where this one was spotted), or under the bridge by McParlan House. They’re good hunters, preying on fish and amphibians near shore. In the winter, they hibernate underground in rock crevices or in muskrat and beaver lodges. They breed in the spring and unlike Gray Ratsnakes (which lay eggs), watersnakes give birth to live young! Have you seen any Northern Watersnakes this summer?

Posted in Friends of Murphys Point, Murphys Point, Murphys Point Provincial Park, Species of the Week | Leave a comment

Species of the Week: The North American Luna Moth

#SpeciesOfTheWeek has returned! This week, our featured species is the North American Luna Moth! This enchanting creature is recognized by its lime-green colour, which helps it to camouflage with the undersides of leaves in its natural habitat. It has an eyespot on each wing to confuse predators and a wingspan of 10 centimetres or greater! The Luna Moth only has one generation per year in Canada and can be seen here at Murphys Point in late May/early June. They typically make their homes among deciduous trees such as white birch, maple, and oak. However, these moths only live for 1 week — making them a rare sighting. In this single week, their sole purpose is to reproduce. They do not even have a mouth for feeding and instead rely on stored fat from when they were a caterpillar. Have you been lucky enough to see one of these beauties here at Murphys Point?

Posted in Friends of Murphys Point, Murphys Point, Murphys Point Provincial Park, Species of the Week | Leave a comment

FMPP Online Silent Auction Open Until Noon on July 11, 2021!

The Friends of Murphys Point Park Online Silent Auction is now live and open until noon on July 11, 2021!

To place a bid, go to our Friends of Murphys Point Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/Friends-of-Murphys-Point-Park-685531544792293/ and visit the “2021 Online Silent Auction” item in the photo album. The procedure for placing bids is listed in the post.

Proceeds from the auction will support our effort to enhance natural and cultural education at Murphys Point through hiring students, developing displays and publications, providing special programming and much more.

Due to pandemic restrictions, we haven’t been able to host our usual in-person fundraisers, so we hope you will help support us with this socially distanced activity! Please spread the word.

Huge thanks to all of our generous donors for contributing beautiful items to this online silent auction.

Questions? E-mail friendsofmurphyspointpark@yahoo.ca

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment