Nature & Geography | The Canadian Encyclopedia

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  • Macleans

    100th Anniversary of Frank Slide Disaster

    This article was originally published in Maclean’s magazine on April 28, 2003. Partner content is not updated.

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  • Article


    Abalone (Haliotis), genus of primitive marine gastropod molluscs with over 70 species worldwide. There are 2 species in Canada. The pinto abalone (Haliotis kamtschatkana) also known as the Japanese or northern ear shell, is found along the entire BC coast.

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  • Article

    Acid Rain

    Acid rain is the wet or dry deposition of acidic substances and their precursors on the Earth's surface. The ongoing industrialization of society has resulted in the increased release of acidic chemicals into the atmosphere.

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  • Article

    Aeolian Landform

    Wind erosion processes consist of abrasion, the scouring of exposed surfaces by the sand-blasting action of wind-borne material; and deflation, the removal of sand-sized and smaller particles by the wind.

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  • Article

    Agriculture in Canada

    Agriculture is the practice of growing crops and rearing animals mainly for food. Farmers also produce other items such as wool from sheep and CBD oil from hemp plants. In Canada, agriculture is an important industry. Only about 7 per cent of Canada’s land can be farmed. Other marginal (poorer) land can be used to ranch cattle. Aquaculture operations are found on the East and West Coasts and in the Great Lakes. Some crops such as tomatoes, cannabis and flowers are grown in greenhouses in urban centres. Canadian agriculture faces many challenges. Some of these challenges concern crop protection, soil conservation, labour, climate change and health. Click here for definitions of key terms used in this article. This is the full-length entry about agriculture in Canada. For a plain-language summary, please Agriculture in Canada (Plain-Language Summary).

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    Air Pollution

    Air pollutants are substances that, when present in the atmosphere in sufficient quantities, may adversely affect people, animals, vegetation or inanimate materials.

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    Alberta Hilda Dinosaur Mega-Bonebed

    The site is important because it confirms that Centrosaurus was a herding dinosaur, and documents that the herds were larger than previously thought, numbering well into the thousands.

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    Alder, tree or shrub of genus Alnus of birch family. The 30 known species are found mainly in the northern hemisphere; 3 are native to Canada.

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    Alderfly, small (13-18 mm), dark, soft-bodied insect of order Megaloptera, family Sialidae, found in freshwater habitats bordered by alder.

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  • Article


    Alfalfa, or lucerne (genus Medicago), is a herbaceous perennial belonging to the legume family and grown as a forage crop.

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    They are mostly photosynthetic organisms whose body is termed a thallus (ie; they lack leaves, stems and roots). All the photosynthetic forms possess chlorophyll a as their primary photosynthetic pigment. Algae also form unprotected reproductive structures.

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  • Article

    Algonquin Provincial Park

    The oldest provincial park in Ontario and the first provincial park in Canada, Algonquin Provincial Park (established 27 May 1893, 7723 km2) is located 250 km north of Toronto.

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    Allison Pass

    Allison Pass, elevation 1,352 metres, is located at kilometre 60, the highest point on the Hope-Princeton Highway (opened 1949) through the Cascade Mountains of southern British Columbia.

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  • Article

    Aluminum in Canada

    Aluminum is a lightweight, strong and flexible metal that resists corrosion and is 100 per cent recyclable. It is a common material in vehicles, buildings, consumer goods, packaging, power transmission and electronics. Canada’s aluminum industry began at the turn of the 20th century and grew quickly during both World Wars. Today, Canada is the world’s fourth largest producer and second largest exporter of aluminum. The country nevertheless accounts for less than 5 per cent of global production. Aside from one smelter in Kitimat, British Columbia, all Canadian plants are in the province of Quebec. Click here for definitions of key terms used in this article.

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  • Article

    American Eel

    The American eel (Anguilla rostrata) is an elongated fish with a round body and long dorsal fin. It is one of about 35 eel species found in Canadian waters and the only freshwater eel species found in North America. In Canada, the American eel is treasured and valued as food by many Indigenous peoples, including the Mi’kmaq, Innu, Abenaki, Haudenosaunee and Cree. Common names for the American eel include Atlantic eel, common eel and freshwater eel. Indigenous peoples in Canada have their own names for eel. For example, the Mi’kmaq call the eel katew (singular) and kataq (plural) while the Cree refer to it as kinebikoinkosew. Eels are fished recreationally and commercially in Canada.

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