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Learning with ABOS

The Alderville Black Oak Savanna is a research, restoration and ecology centre located on Alderville First Nation within the Rice Lake Plains. Tallgrass ecosystems are globally rare, and the Alderville Black Oak Savanna represents one on the largest remnants of tallgrass communities in Ontario. An important part of the Alderville Black Oak Savanna mandate is community and public outreach promoting the importance of these fragile ecosystems.


The Field

Butterfly Count 2018, Photo by Nhan Ng

Interest groups, educators and students are invited to schedule an interpretive tour or volunteer day, where participants experience hands-on restoration activities, citizen science programs or other learning experiences.

The Classroom

Photo by Chelsea Brash

Alderville BOS can bring nature to the classroom in a variety of ways. Workshops are a great way to connect students with the natural world. Workshops may include a thematic presentation, educational activity and/or planting activity involving native species. One of our major goals is to help schools and other facilities create natural areas in developed settings; including gardens that promote tallgrass species, pollinator habitat and traditional use.

Better Together

Alderville Black Oak Savanna
Photo by Colton Johnstone

While both options outlined above are fun and educational, we find that combining field and in classroom activates helps students understand and appreciate all that this beautiful and rare ecosystem has to offer. We will work with educators and partners to customize an experience promoting the understanding and importance of stewardship, and the excitement that can come from interacting with nature!


Workshops and Major Events

Throughout the year, the Alderville Black Oak Savanna hosts many workshops and events.


Photo by Eiblin Koch

Workshops change seasonally and centre around themes such as traditional plant use/harvesting, species a risk, the importance of pollinators, traditional land use and gardening with native plant species- just to name a few. Please check our website ( under “Events” for the latest information on upcoming workshops.

Prairie Day

Photo by Chelsea Brash

Our biggest open-house of the year, Prairie Day is held each fall to showcase the beauty of the Alderville First Nation Black Oak Savanna restoration site and the hard work of our partner organizations, including the Rice Lake Plain Joint Initiative. Prairie Day hosts fun for the whole family including guided hikes, workshops and entertainment. We hope to see you there! Check our website ( and our Facebook ( for more details.

Planting Days

Planting at ABOS
Photo by Mark Bernards

To support our restoration work, we frequently hold planting days. These are typically large events, where anyone is welcome to get their hands dirty and enjoy the feeling of teamwork. The goal of our Planting Days vary with the specific restoration initiative that we are undertaking. Please check our website ( under “Events” for the latest information on scheduled Planting Days.

Habitat Stewardship and Volunteer Days

Our Interpretive Garden and Gitigaan is a platform to host volunteer opportunities, workshops outreach sessions. Some of the events that center around the Gitigaan include citizen science monitoring, native species planting/uses and invasive species removal.

Bumble Bee Watch

Photo by Chelsea Brash

Bumble Bee Watch is a collaborative effort organized by Wildlife Preservation Canada to track and conserve North America’s bumble bee species. This citizen science project allows for individuals to:

  • Identify the bumble bees using photos and have your identifications verified by experts,
  • Help researchers determine the status and conservation needs of bumble bees,
  • Learn about bumble bees, their ecology, and ongoing conservation efforts.

Mission Monarch

Photo by Alicia Yee

Mission Monarch is a citizen science program committed to helping the recovery of Monarch Butterflies. Across Canada, people are heading outdoors to hunt for Monarch Butterfly eggs and caterpillars and sharing their finds with the program researchers. Join Mission Monarch, and be part of the solution!

Native Species Planting

Photo by Alanna Evans

Our main mission is to restore the native tallgrass habitat that exists on site. One of the ways we accomplish this is by planting native species that are locally grown by seeds collected on site.

Invasive Species Removal

Photo by Chelsea Brash

One of the threats to tallgrass ecosystems is the encroachment of non-native and invasive plant species like Spotted Knapweed, Dog-strangling Vine and Sweet White Clover. In order to maintain the tallgrass habitats we need to remove these species, the hours dedicated to this task by volunteers are invaluable.

To arrange or participate in any of these activities, please visit the Alderville Black Oak Savanna website, submit a request or call 905-352-1008. Please also follow us on Instagram @aldervilleblackoaksavanna and Facebook