Muskoka Conservancy can protect another 166 acres of land, thanks to Fowler Construction.
The donated land includes the joining point of Sage Creek and the Muskoka River, as well as more than 600 metres of riverfront. It stretches from the Muskoka River, halfway between Duck Chutes and Springdale Shores, to Bonnie Lake Road in the east.
According to Scott Young, Executive Director of the conservancy, the land is an “important natural area.” He says there are two major reasons for that.
“It’s a coldwater trout stream, which is the key feature there making it worthy of environmentally sensitive status. It cuts through a pretty valley in a mature forest, and drains directly into the Muskoka River,” says Young. “It’s all about water quality. That all starts up on the land, and this is how the water is filtered en route to the lakes.”
The creek is home to a species of fish known as Brook Trout. Their endangerment status is currently at “secure,” but Young says that like many species, their habitat is disappearing as part of the global biodiversity crisis.
“Everything we can do to protect habitat for as many species as possible will help to slow that down,” says Young. “Although saving one small trout stream isn’t going to solve a global issue like a biodiversity crisis, it’s certainly something we can do on a local level.
Young says if enough actions are taken at a local level, it adds up. He credits Fowler for helping to make a difference.
“We have a company that is involved in resource extraction recognizing the value of this, severing it off from their construction operation,” says Scott Young, Executive Director of Muskoka Conservancy. “So it’s a step in the right direction.”
Young says the organization is currently working on a management plan for the land, which might include a portion being used as a hiking trail. He adds another land acquisition is expected by the end of the year.