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150 Little Known Canadian Facts #6

March, 2017

This week we bring you a wide variety of facts from a little zoology to a little filmography. There’s still a long way to go until we reach our 150th fact, so we hope you keep reading and learning.


31.  You may know that there are more doughnut shops per capita in Canada than anywhere else in the world, mainly due to the popularity of Tim Horton’s; this also means we eat a lot more doughnuts than anyone else in the world. There are over 3,600 Tim Horton’s across Canada selling over 3 million doughnuts a day. In 1969, a dozen doughnuts at Tim’s cost 89 cents, and today that same dozen costs 10 times that. And, because a doughnut just doesn’t taste the same without a cup of coffee, we’ll let you know that in 2016, Canadians drank 14 billion cups with 2 billion of those coming from Tim Horton’s.


32.  Canada is also home to some odd animals. Take a look.

a.  The wood frog can live above the Arctic Circle—the only amphibian that can survive there. During the winter, they hibernate in the ground where their heart, eyes and brain freeze. They thaw again to keep their cells from being sucked dry, then go back into a hibernation state. The frogs that live in the far north can live up to 13 years.

b.  The waters of the Arctic are home to the Greenland shark. They keep to the deep, cold waters and hardly anything is known about them. They’ll feed on almost anything such as squid, fish, whale carcasses, polar bears, deer, caribou, and a couple of years ago a couple of Newfoundland fisherman saved a Greenland shark from choking on a moose carcass.

c.The Great Lakes of Ontario is home to the province’s only venomous snake, the Massasauga rattlesnake. You may not find too many if you happen to go for a stroll in that area as the snake is on the Ontario’s endangered species list.


33.  If you thought those animals were odd, then here are some laws that may make you shake your head, too.

a.  It’s against Canada’s Currency Act of 1985 to pay for anything with a lot of coins. Vendors actually have the right to refuse anything more than $5 in nickels, $10 in dimes, $25 in loonies and about $40 in toonies. So, better be safe and rolls the coins for the bank.

b.  In Souris, PEI, it’s illegal to build a snowman taller than 30 inches.

c.  Up until 1995, it was illegal to sell butter-coloured margarine in Ontario. They used to sell the margarine (which was completely white) with a little plastic colour pack that you broke open and kneaded into the margarine. In fact, from 1886 to 1948 (with a little lapse during WWI) margarine was wholly banned from being sold in Canada.


34.  When talking about Canadian inventions, things like basketball and the zipper tend to hog the limelight, but Canada was also a pioneer in the field of digital animation. In 1994, Vancouver’s Mainframe Studios released the first computer-animated television show ever: a science fiction cartoon called Reboot. Disney’s Toy Story, the first digitally animated film, wasn’t released until a year later in 1995.


35.  The fashion industry can be extremely fickle. What is considered to be fashionable one year can fall out of favour the next, seemingly with little rhyme or reason. But if it weren’t for that trend cycle, Canada likely would never have come to be. While the Spanish were searching for precious metals in Central and South America, and the English were using the Thirteen Colonies primarily as farmland to grow things like cotton and tobacco, the French colonists settled the Great White North to fuel the desire for fur clothing back in Europe. Sometimes fashion isn’t fickle. Sometimes it can move empires.


36. Quebec City is home to Université Laval, the oldest university in Canada and the second-oldest in North America, only behind Harvard. Laval was founded as a seminary school in 1663 to train young French Catholic men in the ways of the church. Laval remained a simple religious school for almost 200 years until Queen Victoria granted it the right to administer degrees in 1852. Today Canada has 79 recognised public Universities across the country.



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