One of Canada's Premier Birding and Nature Festivals



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1 Butterfly Gardens Logo with OF with TAG.jpg

Consider the Monarch Butterfly and the troubles they must contend with throughout North America. Illegal logging, use of pesticides and herbicides, habitat loss and the misunderstanding of milkweed (its only host plant) have led to its demise.

BGOSS June 17 2015 image by ©kerry JARVIS-100

Thankfully, concerned groups have taken up the cause. In the fall of 2014, a newly formed community group, “Butterfly Gardens of Saugeen Shores” spearheaded by naturalists’, Melitta Smole, Stew Nutt and Kerry Jarvis was formed. They were determined to make a difference with their ambitious plans of creating butterfly garden friendly pods throughout Saugeen Shores to help save the Monarchs. Their purpose was to provide a food source for Monarchs and other pollinators – enhance the visitors experience in Saugeen Shores and educate people on the plight of Monarch butterflies and native gardening.

BGOSS planting and prep June 2015 image by ©kerry JARVIS-97

By the end of 2015, Butterfly Gardens of Saugeen Shores had planted over 1,400 native plants in 13 different pods. The largest pods are along the Lake Huron shoreline in the newly created Captain Spence Path in Southampton. Other pods were created at: Saugeen First Nation, MacGregor Point Provincial Park, Perkins Park, and the Bruce County Museum and Cultural Centre. All of these pods have been certified and registered as Monarch Way Stations. Lending a hand is something Canadians do well. In year one of this project, over 60 volunteers contributed over 1,720 hours to assist our troubled Monarchs. (Story and photographs by Kerry Jarvis)

shoreline beacon interview feb 2016

Join Kerry Jarvis as he showcases some very special gardens throughout Saugeen Shores.

A34 – SUNDAY, MAY 29 – 1:30 pm – SAUGEEN SHORES BUTTERFLY TRAIL This workshop will start with a walk along the Captain Spence Path in Southampton, where Butterfly Gardens of Saugeen Shores planted over 1000 native plants! Planting native plants and providing shelter, water and food are key ingredients in attracting birds, insects, mammals, reptiles and amphibians to your property. You’ll learn about the “magic plants” that are magnets for birds, butterflies, caterpillars and mammals and the hidden secrets in successful gardening.


Registration inquiries: 519-389-6231

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Mr. Lonely

With permission, Hart’s Tongue Herald (Spring, 2016) Owen Sound Field Naturalists

We know there are more than a few Plover Lover’s out there. If not, the above story  from Cheryl Ferguson should be enough to pique your interest, or at least warm your heart.

On that note, the Huron Fringe Birding Festival invites you to join Stewart Nutt for a trip to the Piping Plover nesting sites at Sauble Beach to experience the unique, fragile world of these special birds and what is being done to help this species survive.

PIPL Female Brooding 1 SB

StewHere’s what Stewart has to say about there brave and beautiful birds:Sometimes, we are presented with unique opportunities that can change our lives. For me this opportunity came in the summer of 2007 when the endangered Piping Plovers arrived and established a nest at Sauble Beach. Their presence so close to home marked the beginning of now continuing efforts to see that the Plover’s return becomes an annual event, helping to secure their survival. These birds build their nests, mere scrapes in the sand, on the beach close to the shoreline and usually in the same area. This becomes their habitat for feeding, nesting and raising young. Such habitats are mostly inhospitable for survival as many beach areas are used for beach and water-based recreation. They are also, of course, used for development. As such Piping Plovers are struggling to survive. They are forced to battle the elements, human encroachment, and many predators.

Image 3You’ll observe the Plovers’ behaviors including: courtship, feeding, life history. Territorial displays and fierce protection will be observed and explained as well as local attempts to protect these charismatic, endangered birds.

Stewart will be leading three separate events to the nesting sites. All you need to do is pick one to become an official Plover Lover.

A7Friday, May 27 – 1:30 pmARE YOU A PLOVER LOVER?

B29 – Saturday, June 4 – 1:30 pmARE YOU A PLOVER LOVER?

B14Friday, June 3 – 1:30 pm – WOULDN’T IT BE PLOVERLY


Plover App


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Registration Inquiries: or call 519-389-6231