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December 17, 2021

Bruce Trail Conservancy sets its sights on protecting two vital habitats

Eugenia Woods photo with deciduous trees in fall

Bruce Trail Conservancy sets its sights on protecting two vital habitats in Ontario December 16, 2021 Bruce Trail Conservancy (BTC) has launched a fundraising campaign to protect two vital habitats with the creation of Balsam Wetlands Nature Reserve and Eugenia Woods Nature Reserve, both about an hour outside of Toronto. 

To date, the Bruce Trail Conservancy has preserved over 12,700 acres of Niagara Escarpment habitats and makes them available to explore through 1,300 km of trails. But, our work is not done. Climate change contributes to the destruction of rich biodiversity, which negatively impacts our Ontario communities and our quality of life. Thankfully, the BTC knows what to do. Protecting more nature across the Niagara Escarpment is a solution, but we need to act now. 

At Balsam Wetlands Nature Reserve, an impressive coniferous swamp of mature Balsam Fir and White Cedar supports a diverse web of life. Rare species like Black Ash and Hart’s-tongue Fern are both thriving in this nature reserve. Wetlands help slow the effects of climate change. They store carbon, improve the quality of our waters and act like giant sponges controlling flooding, and sheltering sensitive species. Despite their undisputed value for the environment, wetlands are disappearing across Ontario. 

Eugenia Woods Nature Reserve is nestled near the iconic Eugenia Falls. The soaring Sugar Maple forests of Eugenia Woods combine with those of neighbouring protected spaces to create an important wildlife corridor nearly 18 km long. Forests, like those at Eugenia Woods, purify the air we breathe, filter the water we drink, prevent erosion, cool our waterways, and reduce the effects of extreme weather. Forests help stabilize the climate. 

To maximize the climate benefits of forests, we must keep more forest landscapes intact. Up until now, these important pieces of the Niagara Escarpment have remained unprotected. The total cost to preserve these two new nature reserves and protect their precious habitats is $3.6 million. But, we're well on our way! 

Your thoughtful donation can help us raise the remaining $1.8 million needed to ensure these wetlands and woods, and the gifts they give us, are protected forever. Quote “Protecting lands along the Niagara Escarpment is critical in addressing climate change, and the global loss of biodiversity. These nature reserves are two of the remaining pieces needed to create a continuous conservation corridor along the Niagara Escarpment. And, with 4.5km of Bruce Trail carefully routed on the properties, these unique landscapes will be available for you to explore. 

Your generosity will ensure that nature continues to nourish our lives today, and into the future.” - Michael McDonald, CEO, Bruce Trail Conservancy -30- Learn More We invite you to watch this video showcasing the nature reserves: Balsam Wetlands Nature Reserve and Eugenia Woods Nature Reserve. 

To learn more about this project, or to donate, visit: Bruce Trail Conservancy Contact: Elizabeth Harrington, Director Communications and Engagement Bruce Trail Conservancy About Bruce Trail Conservancy Bruce Trail Conservancy is one of Ontario’s largest land trusts that acquires, protects and restores the vulnerable habitat and biodiversity of the UNESCO Niagara Escarpment Biosphere. For more than 50 years, we have responsibly connected people to nature through the Bruce Trail. We are a member-driven, volunteer-based, charitable organization, governed by a 19-member Board of Directors. Working with each of the nine Bruce Trail Clubs, we are committed to caring for the Bruce Trail and to preserving land along its route.


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