Penguins of the North

A few weeks ago I took to the Bay of Fundy, catching a boat from Grand Manan Island to our oceanic border with the United States. In these hotly contested waters can be found a small stretch of land, Machias Seal Island, protected by the Canadian Wildlife Service as a migratory bird sanctuary for the...

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Sinking of the Tonka

It was on a clear morning of August 21, 1959 when Scott Falconer’s boat Tonka, loaded with herring, was accidentally rammed and sunk by another boat. The lucrative herring run had just begun and Scott was then without a boat. Scott’s good friend Arnold MacMillan from Pictou Island felt really sorry that such a thing...

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The storm of 1957 …

It was a beautiful sunny plus-75 F degree fall day on September 25, 1957. Herring fishing had been underway since August 19. There were a few fishermen from the mainland and probably about eight-island fisherman including my father who had been setting their nets around Pictou Island. Melvin MacDonald, Arnold MacMillan, Harold Bennett, Duncan, Lauchie,...

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Provincial Seamen’s Memorial Service in Canso

The Seamen’s Memorial in Canso was constructed in 1976 to mark the 75th anniversary of the incorporation of the Town of Canso by the Canso Lions Club with donations from the Lions and the community. The Seamen’s Memorial highlights four centuries of the fishing heritage of the Canso Area and contains numerous names of fishermen...

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Island produces hockey star

I reflect back 40-plus years when fishermen around Pictou Island would live in their fishing shanties during lobster season.  Art Ferguson and my father had their shanties side by side on the bank above the Pictou Island wharf. Art’s son Graham and I were approximately the same age and as tradition goes, we would usually...

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FONS asks Environment Minister to reject mill’s application for new facility

Friends of the Northumberland Strait (FONS) says the science behind Northern Pulp’s proposed treatment facility is lacking and have asked Environment Margaret Miller to reject the mill’s application. “We have heard over and over that the decision will be made on the science,” says Jill Graham-Scanlan, president of FONS. “If that is the case, and...

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Winter weather on Pictou Island 1954

Wednesday, March 2, 1954 was a nice fine 47 degrees Fahrenheit winter day. There was very little scattered ice in the strait and there was no snow on the ground. My father arose early that morning and went down to the beach on his tractor. The beach was an area where many Pictou Island fishermen...

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Northern Pulp, fishermen agree to injunction settlement

In December 2018, Northern Pulp applied to the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia for an injunction prohibiting any interference with the activities of Northern Pulp and its contractors in conducting work on the waters in Pictou Harbour, Caribou Channel and the Northumberland Strait. The judge found that Northern Pulp was entitled to the injunction at...

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FONS says Northern Pulp reneges on commitment to hold open houses before filing new plan for environmental assessment

Concerned citizens and fishermen say they are appalled that Northern Pulp does not plan to hold any open houses or public consultation before filing for environmental assessment. Consultants for Northern Pulp have confirmed that key information, including the Receiving Water Study (RWS) for the new pipe route and outfall location and all studies required for...

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Pipe opponents rally; NP gets injunction

PICTOU – Opponents of Northern Pulp’s plans to pump effluent into the Northumberland Strait remain determined to support closing Boat Harbour on schedule and oppose effluent discharge into the Strait. Friends of the Northumberland Strait member Nicole MacKenzie declined comment on the court decision late Tuesday afternoon that granted Northern Pulp a temporary injunction to...

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