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Cafetalk Tutor's Column

Tutor Zach McLaughlin 's Column

I’m a forest person!

Weekly Topic: Are you more of a “beach person (海派)” or a “mountain person (山派)“? or a "〇〇person?

Oct 25, 2021

I’m not a mountain person because there are no mountains anywhere nearby and I’m not a beach person, either, because I can get a sunburn in 20 minutes. Instead, I think I’m a forest person! 

I love the fresh smell of forests and the soft, filtered light coming through the leaves. There’s shelter from wind, sun, and rain, so forests are great in all kinds of weather. I also love all of the animal and insect life in forests. I grew up in the countryside and used to work with insects, so I love finding all kinds of creatures in the forest. Even in a city like Toronto, we can find chipmunks, squirrels, rabbits, raccoons, foxes, coyotes, and more in the forested trails and parks. 

Forests always have interesting rocks and trees to discover, unique landmarks that give each forest its own character. I really like rocks that have moss on them and old trees with knotholes and tangled roots. It’s even better if there’s a small pond with some ducks or a stream with fish or crayfish. Forests are very peaceful places where you really feel alive.

One of the strangest things I’ve ever seen in a forest is a “rain” of green worms. For just a couple of days in the summer in this particular forest, thousands of tiny green worms descend from the canopy on silk lines, so it seems like it’s raining worms. After walking through the forest, I was covered in little worms, which was actually pretty disgusting, but it was also quite interesting! 

One of the dangers in Canadian forests is ticks. Ticks look like small insects, but they’re actually arachnids (like spiders), and they are blood-sucking parasites that can transmit Lyme disease. If you spend a long time in a forest, it’s a good idea to check your clothes and skin for ticks. Don’t be too worried, though. I’ve only ever found one on me in my whole life!

Try this short quiz to check your knowledge of Canadian forest creatures. (They’re all mentioned above!)  


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