Bruce Duncan : Environmentalist of the Year – 1991

Bruce Duncan is being recognized for his leadership, commitment, and effectiveness in promoting natural history, and a healthier natural world.

He has accomplished this not only in his professional capacity as an outdoor educator and biologist with the Hamilton Region Conservation Authority but more so for his involvement with numerous natural history and ornithological organizations such as the Ontario Bird Banding Association, the Long Point Bird Observatory, the Niagara Peninsula Hawkwatch, the World Wildlife Fund and the Hamilton Naturalists’ Club.

Bruce banding peregrine falcon chick.

For many years Bruce has been extremely active in the ecology of raptors (birds of prey). He is a qualified master bird bander and has operated a raptor banding station at Hawk Cliff, near St. Thomas. He is recognized as an authority all over North America on the protection of raptors. He is the current president of the newly formed Niagara Peninsula Hawkwatch which maintains a spring count of migrating raptors at Beamer Conservation Area near Grimsby. He has also been instrumental in helping re-establish raptors in this area. In 1986 and 1987, while working at the Taquanyah Conservation Area, he directed a hacking program that released four Bald Eagles. In 1988, Bruce was instrumental in directing a Hamilton Naturalists’ Club program that hacked six Peregrine Falcons over the skies of Hamilton. What a summer that was for the birds and numerous volunteers that assisted with the project!

Bruce is a ready volunteer teacher for many environment and natural history camps and organizations dealing with children. He is not only an authoritative naturalist but he is a very entertaining speaker and has lectured and written widely on natural history and environmental concerns. Bruce believes that learning about nature is inherently interesting and that increasing awareness about the natural world leads to action.

He is also an excellent strategist on solving environmental problems and his advice is sought after by many other people in the area. As one of his nominators wrote, “…nature and the natural world are not just work-day concerns for Bruce, his passion for things natural consumes all of his time.”