Northern Cardinal, courtesy of Bruce Di Labio



The Mississippi Madawaska Land Trust (MMLT) will hold its Annual Dinner and Silent Auction on Friday, November 13th at the Almonte Civitan Club. This year’s speaker is Bruce Di Labio who will speak on the topic Changes to Bird Life in Eastern Ontario Over 50 Years. His talk will cover status changes in various species from the Turkey Vulture to the Northern Cardinal, the declines in other species such as the Loggerhead Shrike and the Red-headed Woodpecker to new species found over the past 5 years.

Bruce is a native of Ottawa and his passion for birds and birding began at the age of 8, when he hand-tamed a Black-capped Chickadee at his family cottage at Constance Bay, Ontario. From these simple beginnings emerged both a life-long passion and career in the field of birding. He is a weekly columnist on birding in the Ottawa Citizen and teaches birding courses.

In addition, Bruce has authored numerous articles over the years for Nature Canada, Ontario Birds, Birding, and Ontario Birding News. Bruce was a member of the championship Kowa Birding Team that successfully won three World Series of Birding titles in New Jersey and one championship title in the Texas Birding Classic.

The evening will also feature a Silent Auction which will offer a wide range of useful and interesting items, with an emphasis on services, ranging from a weekend stay at a cabin in the woods to guided walks in beautiful nature settings. It’s an opportunity to support the Land Trust and reap some great benefits at the same time, all while enjoying the pleasant company of like-minded friends.

This annual event is a fundraiser for the MMLT, a charitable organization that works with landowners interested in permanently protecting properties with exceptional ecological value. To date, the Land Trust has conserved over 2400 acres of land in eastern Ontario. The board of the MMLT believes that exposure to nature provides numerous personal benefits and offers regular opportunities to the general public to experience the wilderness first-hand on its nature reserves.

The Almonte Civitan Club is located at 500 Almonte St. (Wolf Grove Rd). Doors will open at 6:00 p.m. to allow time to look over the auction items and mix and mingle with friends. Dinner will be served at 7:00. Dress is casual. Tickets are $40, cheque or cash only, available at Hello Yellow in Almonte, The Granary in Carleton Place, Village Treats in Lanark, Shadowfax in Perth, Pakenham General Store, and Arnprior Book Shop. For your convenience, you may also e-mail or call 613-278-2939 to reserve tickets for pick-up at the door. Deadline for ticket purchase is November 6, 2015 or when tickets are sold out. For more information, visit the Land Trust’s website at