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Lake Erie North Shore Watershed Plan - Niagara Peninsula ...

Lake Erie North Shore Watershed Plan - Niagara Peninsula ...

LAKE ERIE NORTH SHORE

LAKE ERIE NORTH SHORE WATERSHED PLAN Also located at Point Abino is Phillips Ancient Sugar Bush Grove which historically was a sugar bush. The survey conducted by the Bert Miller Nature Club (2004) noted that most of the sugar maples were in the 300 to 320 year range, with a few possibly reaching 400 years old. Sugar Loaf Hill, located along the Lake Erie shoreline just west of Port Colborne‟s downtown area, is one of three Lake Erie coastal dunes to be covered by old growth trees. The Bert Miller Nature Club noted ancient hemlocks growing on sand dunes, which is an extremely rare scenario. In addition, several tree species with ages ranging from 150 years old to over 200 years old were identified. These include for example, a sugar maple with a diameter ranging from 20 to 26 inches and an age ranging from 165 to 230 years old; a hemlock with a diameter of 14 inches and an age ranges of 170 to over 200 years old; and a pignut hickory with an 18 inch diameter and an age range of 175 to 190 years old (Bert Miller Nature Club 2004). Morgan’s Point owned by the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority has been noted as Lake Erie‟s most eastern lakeshore savannah grove with old growth trees up to 73 inches in diameter and ages of 300 years old (Bert Miller Nature Club 2004). Most of the large trees are stately black walnuts with a diameter range around 30 inches and an age range of 150 to 200 years old. Other old growth species include for example, sugar maples with a diameter range of 20 to 34 inches and ages reaching over 300 years old; a record sized red oak with a 73 inch diameter and an age of 350 years; and several hop hornbeam have been identified with diameters ranging from 8 to 15 inches and ages ranging from 230 to 250 years old (Bert Miler Nature Club 2004). Conservation Areas Long Beach Conservation Area Long Beach Conservation Area is located in the Township of Wainfleet along Lake Erie. This 56 hectare park offers camping, swimming and numerous other opportunities for beach related activities along the sandy shores of Lake Erie. Forest and lake habitats present opportunities for bird watching and wildlife photography. Exposed limestone rock along parts of the shoreline at Long Beach offer visitors an opportunity to examine fossilized remains of ancient flora and fauna. Under the lake‟s surface this unique rock form continues out to a small island visible from shore. The result is a natural magnet to the Great Lakes birds and fish, offering them unique shelter, feeding and spawning habitat (NPCA No Date). Morgan‟s Point Conservation Area Located along the shore of Lake Erie, this significant parcel of land is designated as a regionally environmentally sensitive area due to its significant dune and plant community, including old growth forest as previously described. The lakefront bedrock shoal outcrop, sand dunes, tall grass meadow, woodlot and open areas offer passive recreational uses as well as an excellent opportunity for viewing migratory birds and monarch butterflies. 58

LAKE ERIE NORTH SHORE WATERSHED PLAN Wainfleet Wetlands Conservation Area The Wainfleet Wetlands Conservation Area has in part been designated as provincially significant wetland, as previously described. This area also offers numerous summer and winter recreational activities such as hiking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and nature appreciation. The walls of the quarries pose a unique opportunity to view the bedrock formations of the Onondaga Formation. Coral fossils that comprise a part of our natural history are displayed in this unique open rock history and can be observed throughout the Wainfleet Wetlands quarries. In addition, as described earlier, this conservation area is important for the protection of various ecological communities and providing habitat for wildlife (Frohlich 2010). Gord Harry Conservation Trail (formerly Wainfleet Rail Trail) This multi-use trail follows the pathway of the former Grand Trunk Railroad, stretching 13 kilometers from the Wainfleet Wetlands Conservation Area, west to the border of Wainfleet and Haldimand County. The trail offers horseback riders, cyclists and hikers an opportunity to enjoy the picturesque countryside from the spoils of a manicured trail. Baird Estate Conservation Area and Wildlife Reserve This 2 hectare wetland does not have any public access; this natural areas acts as a wildlife refuge. Philips Conservation Area (not indicated on mapping) Philips Conservation Area is 38 hectares in size and includes Philips Ancient Sugar Bush Grove. This conservation area protects the diversity of ecological communities and wildlife habitat of forest; wetland; meadow; old growth forest of sugar maple, black cherry, and oak; and meta core and wildlife connections (Frohlich 2010). There is no public access to this site. 59

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