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David Ainslie

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From starting to farm in the early 80's and recognizing that I could not farm in Essex County without biology alongside, I began the yearly addition of landscape features (i.e. protection of forest, tree lines to hedgerows, wetlands, pollinator park, prairie grasslands, hibernacula, no-till farming, cover crops, the identification of existing species at risk, etc.).  All of these activities occurred in the context of farm economics, farm norms and peer attitudes. The most demanding project has been the restoration of a rich Carolinian Forest greatly disturbed during the ash cut of 2004 leaving extensive rutting and invasive plants. Since the fall of 2011 to the present, significant labour, time and material has been dedicated and finally positive results have been realized.  In the process much has been learned about the richness of our biological past. At 70 years of age I am leaving the monoculture behind and embracing complexity and resilience. I look forward to the next 20 years, initiating projects that I can learn from and share with others.