In conversation with Don Enright

In conversation with Don Enright – Renowned naturalist and wildlife expert

From a young age, Don Enright has been obsessed with and passionate about the Canadian natural world. He has made it his life’s mission to learn about, teach and work towards environment conservation. He has collaborated with various zoos, cultural centres, historic sites, and national parks both within his home country Canada, and as far as Melbourne, Australia, to build immersive experiences that bring stories to life. Don admits that sometimes he wishes he was a veterinarian, but instead, Don is an interpretive planner, and a fine one at that. 
Don’s passion for wildlife has led him through an unforgettable thirty-year career as a professional naturalist, writer and presenter. Since his early days as a park interpreter in the Canadian Rockies and on Vancouver Island, Don has introduced many travellers to the wild wonders of Canada.

On Evergreen’s specially curated 21 Day Natural Wonders of the Rockies & Alaska Inside Passage Cruise, Don will join you between Jasper and Victoria to enhance your journey and get you up close to the natural wonders of Western Canada.
To tell you more about your host, we caught up with Don for a quick tête-à-tête about life as a naturalist.
Don Enright Conservationist
What inspires you most about Canada?
The sheer breadth of it, and the extremes of weather here. To experience a single place at 30°C and -40°C degrees, and everything in between, over the course of the year is something everybody should do. 

Is there a time of the year best suited for wildlife spotting?
It really depends. Spring and fall on the prairies, for the migrations. Early summer in the East, for the nesting birds. May and June in Canada are magical, especially June in the mountains. July is fantastic in the really high country. Winter on the West Coast has a tonne of wildlife and rain. 

What tips can you give our guests on spotting wildlife in Canada?
Sunrise and sunset—those are the only times that really matter. Also, get off the big roads and explore a bit. Give the animals their distance. Learn your plants and their habitats—it helps you understand the wildlife.

Tell us about your favourite wildlife encounter.
Once I was to lead a walk in the mountains but it was cancelled because somebody saw a grizzly on the trail. So I drove up to the parking lot to tell people it was off. As a consolation, I set up a display table about bears: scat and tracks and stuff. I set up a spotting scope just to look up at all the greenery on the meadow, and didn’t even focus it on anything. A man walks up, looks through the scope, and says quietly, “Oh yeah, there it is.” The grizzly was right in focus in the scope. I may have pushed him out of the way to look at it. 

As a wildlife expert on an Evergreen tour, what are some things that you want our guests to know about you? 
I have been watching wildlife in the west since I was a kid. I can identify pretty much every bird by sound. I know wild plants and their medicinal uses. And I tell awful jokes. 

Image Credit: Don Enright

Featured Itinerary

21 Day Natural Wonders of the Rockies and Alaska Inside Passage Cruise

Join us on an exciting new adventure over 21 days from Vancouver to Seattle.

Specifically designed to enhance your interaction with and experience of Canada’s most sought after icons; it’s wildlife and wilderness, this tour will bring you closer to Canada’s incredible wildlife and amazing scenery than any other. Keep a look out for bears, moose, elk, and even wolves. 

Don will join us between Jasper and Victoria on this specially curated tour. Our specific aim is to enhance your journey to get you up close to the natural wonders of Western Canada.
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