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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 General Summary: This site is located south of the Wainfleet Bog/ Highway 3 between Golf Course Road to the west and Steele Street to the east. The southern boundary is Lake Erie. This study site is unique in that it contains all of the expected wetland communities but also has interesting communities associated with exposed rock including alvar and rock barren. The most common community recorded for this study site was the Shallow Marsh community characterized by Common Reed, Rushes, Sedges, Cattails, and Canada Blue-joint. The study site also has a very rich coastal marsh, which is most likely the largest coastal shallow marsh along the Lake Erie Shoreline from Fort Erie to Wainfleet. A dam immediately north of Lakeshore Road disconnects this marsh from fluctuating lake levels. The second most common community denoted was Thicket Swamp. This community was dominated by Silky Dogwood with Gray Dogwood, Southern Arrow-wood, Narrow-leaved Meadowsweet, Nannyberry, Willows, and Manitoba Maple. For more information on this site please refer to the NPCA NAI Inventory. There are a total of 564 recorded taxa for this site. This site is also in part designated as Cement Plant Road Quarry PSW, Wainfleet/Eagle Marsh Drain PSW, and Wainfleet Wetlands Conservation Area. In addition, Gord Harry Conservation Trail cuts through a portion of the study site. Site ID: WF-13-00-00-00-00 Municipality: Port Colborne / Wainfleet Subwatershed: Primarily part of the Biederman Drain subwatershed with a portion in the west draining to the Mill Race Creek subwatershed. Approx. Size: 2080 hectares General Summary: This study site is bordered by the Welland Canal on the east and Dixie Road on the west. It is located south of the Feeder Canal and stretches south of Highway 3. This large study site can be subdivided into three areas; the Onondaga Escarpment, Mud Lake, and the Wainfleet Bog (Brady 1980). Onondaga Escarpment Sites The Onondaga Escarpment contains the wooded scarp itself, which is surrounded by agriculture, and is the southern boundary of the Wainfleet Bog. The community occurring in large patches along the drier escarpment rim supports large, spreading Red Oaks that dominate the canopy with Sugar Maple as a close co-dominant. Associates include Bitternut Hickory, American Beech, Black Cherry and occasionally, Red Elm. The subcanopy is dominated by Sugar Maple with Hop Hornbeam, Black Maple, and American Elm occasionally occurring. White Ash and Choke Cherry form a very sparse shrub layer. On the ground layer, Blue Cohosh, Wild Leeks, Herb Robert, Running Strawberry and False Solomon‟s Seal cover between 25 to 60% of the rocky\stony shallow soil. However, particularly in areas further back from the escarpment rim, Sugar Maple forms the canopy. For additional information on the Onondaga Escarpment site as well as information on the Mud Lake and Wainfleet Bog sites, please refer to the NPCA Natural Areas Inventory. A total of 620 taxa were documented at these sites. 68

LAKE ERIE NORTH SHORE WATERSHED PLAN This site is also in part designated as Wainfleet/Eagle Marsh Drain Wetland Complex PSW, Onondaga Escarpment Wetland Complex LSW, and Bertie Formation (III) Earth Science ANSI. Name: Sugarloaf Hill (Sand Hills) Site ID: PC-10-00-00-00-00 Municipality: City of Port Colborne Subwatershed: Eagle Marsh Drain Approx. Size: 27 hectares General Summary: This site is located on the west side of the Welland Canal and follows the shoreline from Elm Street west to Quarry Road. The northern boundary is Lakeshore Road. This site includes very tall canopied mature forest with scattered old growth individuals. Many Red Oak and Sugar Maple trees are approx. 1m diameter at breast height. The sand dunes are stabilized with Red Oak - Sugar Maple forests and are carpeted with Impatiens or Garlic mustard in the ground layer. Some patches support grassy areas of Nodding Fescue and shrubs of Bladdernut along the top or ridge of dune. The bedrock outcrop east of Sugarloaf Hill has nice Willow species thickets with some shrubby Eastern Cottonwood and very nice Juncus (Rush)/ Great Lake Coastal Meadow marshes following the numerous bedrock fissures. The majority of species for this study site were observed on the Calcarious Rock/ Bedrock Open Shoreline Ecosite or the Willow Gravel Shrub Shoreline Type patch and especially from the marshes which grow in the bedrock fissures closer to the waveline. While the majority of the plants were recorded in the complexes, the open sandy beach covered a greater percentage of the area. In this Open Sandy Beach community, the plant cover is very patchy and barren. Sea Rocket, Clammy Weed, Beach Pea and other upland species were found in this community. For more information on this site please refer to the NPCA Natural Areas Inventory. A total of 112 taxa were collected for this study site. This site is also in part designated as Sugar Loaf Hill old growth forest. Name: Canal Lands Site ID: WE-07-00-00-00-00 Municipality: City of Port Colborne Subwatershed: This study site follows the Welland Canal on both sides from the Welland River to Lake Erie and therefore only a portion is in the Watershed Plan study area. This study spans the Welland Canal North, Welland Canal, Welland Canal South and Welland River Between Canals subwatersheds. Approx. Size: 1081 hectares General Summary: This site is characterized by poor soils due to the construction of the canals. The soil horizon in many areas is inverted and thus there are vast areas where no vegetation is present. Field crews did visit some vegetated areas of Deciduous Swamp communities with dominant Green Ash and Swamp Maple. The understory was largely regenerating Green Ash and Swamp Maple with a ground cover of Fowl Manna Grass, Crested Sedge, Spotted Touch-me-not, and False Nettle. There are a total of 92 recorded taxa for this study site. Name: Nickel Beach Woodlot (Brady 1980) Site ID: PC-04-00-00-00-00 Municipality: City of Port Colborne Subwatershed: Wignell Drain Approx. Size: 197 hectares General Summary: This study site includes a very rich active dune community. It is the third largest extant of dune ecosystem in the entire NPCA watershed jurisdiction. A rare form of poison-ivy thicket is found here with stems up to 30-60cm tall on active dunes as 69

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