Clean up the wetlands

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Earlier this month, volunteers for the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) removed more than 750 pounds of garbage from the banks of the Mad River. Now, the NCC is looking for more people to help prepare the area for a new nature trail.

“This is the perfect way to contribute to a conservation project in your own neighbourhood,” said Erica Thompson, National Conservation Engagement Manager at the NCC. “The wetlands are just a 15-minute drive from Creemore.”

To further clear the area for public use, the NCC has planned two upcoming volunteer events. On Friday, October 18, it will help people canoe out into the wetlands to “lop, chop, anchor and clear out” trees and branches along the river. On Saturday, November 9, groups will be planting trees along the Mad River to help prevent soil erosion.

“We work with thousands of Canadians on projects like this so people can get out and spend time in nature,” said Thompson. “By volunteering, you can learn about natural history while helping to preserve it.”

Minesing Wetlands is one of the largest and most diverse wetland complexes in southern Ontario. It provides habitat for several significant species, including at-risk turtles and the eastern prairie white-fringed orchid. Minesing Wetlands is also home to one of the largest and oldest great blue heron colonies in the province.

The Wetlands is located 20 km west of Barrie. Once it is completed, the nature trail will provide a new entrance to the wetlands. It will also feature signs so members of the public can read about the significance of the area.

The Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority (NVCA), which owns the conservation, will complete preparation work on the trail. The NVCA is dedicated to preserving a healthy environment to protect, conserve and enhance water, wetlands, forests and lands.

“The NCC’s mandate is to preserve and protect ecologically significant areas in southern Ontario,” explained Thompson. These areas include the Creemore Nature Preserve, which many local people have already played a role in caring for, she said.

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