People passionate about nature

Ted Mosquin

Ralph Bird Award Recipient 1992

Dr. Ted Mosquin is the recipient of this award for his many contributions to our knowledge of Canada’s natural history, and environmental literature, both scientific and popular. Also for his leadership in the struggle to protect Canada’s endangered natural landscape.

Dr. Mosquin, a native son of Manitoba, grew up on a farm near Beausejour, where, rumour has it, he earned part of his university tuition by stoking the fire in the family still. After receiving his B.Sc. in botany at the University of Manitoba in 1956, Dr. Mosquin moved to the University of California, Los Angeles, to complete his Ph.D. also in botany in 1961.

After completing his doctoral studies, Dr. Mosquin worked as a research scientist for Agriculture Canada for 12 years. In 1972, Dr. Mosquin became the Canadian Nature Federation’s executive director and immediately began to transform the Federation into Canada’s voice for nature. Within four short years, under his leadership, the CNF grew from an organization with a membership of 1,800, a staff of 3, and an annual budget of $70,000 to an organization with a membership of 25,500, a staff of 14 and an annual budget of $800,000. While executive director of the CNF, Dr. Mosquin launched the publication of Nature Canada, serving as its editor for five years. He also initiated the Nature Canada bookstore.

While executive director for CNF, he administered a Dominica national park project with support from the Canadian International Development Agency, and arranged for Canadian paryicipation in the planning and development of Trois Pitons National Park.

Dr. Mosquin is a past chairman of the board of the Canadian Audubon Society, past president of the Canadian Nature Federation, and past president of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS). While president of CPAWS, he was the driving force behind the founding of Borealis, CPAWS’ magazine devoted to the preservation of parks and wilderness, which has resulted in tripling CPAWS’ membership in three years.

Dr. Mosquin’s publications include 25 referred papers in scientific journals on various aspects of plant systematics and evolution, and over 30 articles in publications aimed at the general public on environmental issues and natural history.