In search of Borneo’s elusive ‘man of the forest’

Deep in a jungled land, where monkeys and apes share the trees with myriad snakes, birds and giant insects – and the orangutan

In search of Borneo’s elusive ‘man of the forest’As the flight neared the Borneo shore, the forest merged from the fog. The steam wafted skyward, slowly and mysteriously revealing the grandeur of the last remaining patches of Malaysian rainforest. Thoughts of strange wild men and headhunters still lingered as I contemplated my imminent arrival in Kota Kinabalu (K.K. to the locals), the capital…

Monarch butterflies here today, gone tomorrow

Surprisingly, plenty of insects migrate. Just like birds, they seek to escape the cold, and find food and places where competition is lessened

Monarch butterflies here today, gone tomorrowMigration is a concept most people don’t really understand and have difficulty relating to, since it’s something we humans just don’t normally do. When we think of migration, we think of birds and mammals primarily, for these are the most obvious creatures to migrate. Twice each year, billions of them travel to or from their…

The amazing wild horses of Sable Island

As we approached the island, our anticipation rose and ebbed as we watched the weather. We weren’t sure if, after travelling so far, we could even land

The amazing wild horses of Sable IslandAs a guide, I often get to travel to exciting destinations. For example, I recently participated in an adventure to the Canadian Maritime provinces that took me to Sable Island. I’ve felt the urge, almost the need, to visit this magical place for most of my adult life. I’m not sure really why since it’s…

Letting your creative spirit loose

Back in the studio after a lifetime of sporadic art lessons, embracing the spirituality and fun

Letting your creative spirit looseMaking art is fun, spiritually soothing and a wonderful outlet for non-verbal, non-scripted creativity. At least that’s what I think after nearly seven decades of observing, sketching and painting. Each of several defined periods of my life was led by one or two talented art teachers, including my mom Frankie Robinson and her pal Peg…

Keeping an eye on the uncharted course ahead

Too many right-wing politicians base their policy thinking on antiquarian dogma, and not contemporary science or even democratic values

Keeping an eye on the uncharted course aheadThe other day my wife looked at me in a familiar way and said, “You are such a ‘rowboat’ thinker.” I knew immediately what she was getting at. Maybe it’s because I grew up with a father and grandfather who were inveterate hand-line fishers out of clinker-built rowboats. They first got me out on the…

It’s still winter but my trees are getting chubby

In January as the days get longer, the trees start preparing for spring and the buds start to swell

It’s still winter but my trees are getting chubbyEvery year about this time, I get quite excited as my trees start to get chubby! They aren’t really putting on weight, but their profile looks different than it did in November and December, when it was easy to see the sky through the branches since the buds were very small and the twigs weren’t…

Self-discovery, one shovelful of snow at a time

Snow throws a lot at us. Our response to it can be seen in how we navigate the challenges of building a business, writing a book or tackling a project

Self-discovery, one shovelful of snow at a timeThe sun is shining, even if the air is still frigid, so I’ll take it. After several days of digging out my huge driveway – 100 metres, to be exact – and coping with drifting snow, even my most optimistic “Shovelling is a great full-body workout strategy” is feeling less than enthusiastic. I love the…

Surefire ways to find out if you’re a naturalist

Troy Media is pleased to introduce a biweekly column by naturalist and author Geoff Carpentier

Surefire ways to find out if you’re a naturalistTroy Media is pleased to introduce a biweekly column by naturalist Geoff Carpentier. Geoff’s interest in nature started when he was 13, wandering through the woods near his home in northern Ontario. He studied zoology and biological sciences at the University of Guelph before working for more than three decades in senior positions with the…

The ritual and love of Christmas at Skelhp

Whales, glorious sunsets, warming fires, close-knit family, a hand-cut tree, elaborate toasts – and plaid!

The ritual and love of Christmas at SkelhpThe humpback whales were still breaching and blowing as we crossed by ferry from Little River to Powell River on our way back to Skelhp after a week with friends. In mid-December, the big ocean visitors begin their travels south, and once again the local orcas and sea lions become the dominant residents of the…

A sexual twist on environmental activism

In one amazing swoop, pagan spiritism, Earth worship, environmental activism, untethered eroticism and necromancy all come together

A sexual twist on environmental activismWhen creative intellect, left-wing politics and sexuality meet, the bizarre is sure to follow, even if it gets few followers. Take the ecosexual movement, pioneered by California PhDs Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens. In 2016, they penned the Ecosexual Manifesto. Maybe the Earth was screwed before, but this couple wants to work it over in…

Approaching the end of fall on the Sunshine Coast

The days are increasingly short and grey, but nature is on full display everywhere we look

Approaching the end of fall on the Sunshine CoastI’m looking out of our living room window on a predominantly grey sea and landscape. The eye first trips over some close-in treetops before it encompasses five km of Jervis Inlet, leading to Scotch Fir Point in the mid-distance. The bulk of Texada Island beckons in the further background, hiding whatever it wishes behind its…

An epic fishing adventure at the Arctic Circle

Ten friends, a rustic lodge and days spent on the pristine waters of Great Bear Lake

An epic fishing adventure at the Arctic CircleBy Grady Semmens “Well, I guess I actually have to do this now that we’ve come all this way,” says Jeff warily as he eyes the cloud of mosquitoes that tracks our every move and bounces off the nets that cover our heads. And with that, he casts off every stitch of clothing save for…

Finding your business’s sweet spot

Berry picking is a lot like business: you need to to work through the thorns, avoid the bears and pick where others aren’t

Finding your business’s sweet spotI like picking berries in the summer. It’s one of those memories that lasts into the fall and winter, much like the frozen berries that are hidden in the freezer for a tasty bit of summer on a cold day. I’m not sure if I was always a good berry picker but I do remember…

Going bananas for a threatened fruit

A deadly fungus is spreading all over the world, so we can expect to pay more for bananas. But our world-class scientists could help solve the problem

Going bananas for a threatened fruitThe world could run out of bananas. Reports this summer suggest that a banana-killing fungus, Fusarium TR4 or the Panama disease, has reached Latin America. And it could spread, affecting crops sold in the United States and Canada. After having been detected in the Middle East, Asia and Australia, many experts were expecting the highly-contagious…