The newest member of the CPAWS Nova Scotia team

  • Published on Dec 14 2017 |
  • by Meghan Borland |
  • This article is tagged as:

Hi Everyone!

My name is Meghan Borland and I am thrilled to be the newest addition to the CPAWS-NS team. I will be working with Chris Miller to protect Nova Scotia’s precious wilderness. With a background in Marine Management, I will be primarily focusing on issues related to the marine environment, more specifically marine protected areas (MPAs). The purpose of my very first blog post at CPAWS-NS is to share with you a little bit about myself and why I am so passionate about protecting the ocean and the creatures who call it home. I will posting about MPAs on the blog soon, so stay tuned!

From a young age, I’ve had an affinity for wilderness and conservation. My grandparents have a place in Florida, where as a child, I was lucky enough to spend many holidays. Each morning, I would wake up early to join my Nan and Pops on a morning walk. This was not just any old walk. It started on a pathway that meandered through salt marshes, which then led to a wooden foot path through mangrove forests and finally ended at the beach. I loved these morning walks and the creatures that I saw, especially the birds; my Pops taught me all about them. I can still hear the winding sound of my disposable Kodak camera as I eagerly awaited the next Nat Geo worthy photograph of a pelican swooping down to the sea or an anhinga spreading its wings, drying off in the hot mid-day sun. When I trace back my love for the ocean and environment, this is where it began.

During these walks in Florida, I was too young to understand that without adequate protection and conservation measures, these coastal and marine environments would not be pristine forever. As I furthered my education, this harsh reality revealed itself. I knew that I wanted to study the environment and how to protect it. Growing up in Southern Ontario, I sought out opportunities to study aquatic ecosystems both locally and abroad. For example, I spent a summer conducting limnological research at the Queen’s University Biological Station. This work became the foundation for my undergraduate honours thesis, where I investigated factors that determine zooplankton community composition. So, if you need to identifying a bird in Florida, or you need to ID a zooplankton, just let me know.

My lifelong curiousity for the ocean remained, and in 2015 I moved to Halifax to pursue a Master of Marine Management degree at Dalhousie University. This was my very first time visiting the Canadian Atlantic. From the turquoise water of Crystal Cresecent Beach to the rugged shoreline of Duncan’s Cove, I was blown away. To this day, I still am. During my Master’s degree, I travelled to Indonesia to complete an internship at a non-profit organization, collect research for my thesis project, and to learn about parasites and travel insurance (the hard way).

Having had the opportunity to fulfil a life-long dream of conducting research within small-scale fisheries in the developing world, I am ready to make conservation gains here in a province that I have grown to love and now call home (sorry Ontario). I love Nova Scotia for many reasons, but first and foremost is because of its natural beauty and the numerous places, even just 10 minutes from the city core, that offer stunning hikes and endless views. I believe that MPAs are an important piece of the puzzle to help protect the environment for both current and for future generations. I look forward to working with all of you to ensure that Nova Scotia stays wild.

Best fishes,

Meghan Borland