Port Joli, NS (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Port Joli, NS (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Nature Conservancy of Canada protects 395 hectares (976 acres) on Nova Scotia’s South Shore

July 28, 2016
Port Joli, Nova Scotia

 

The Nature Conservancy of Canada has finalized protection of 395 hectares (976 acres) of coastal properties in southwestern Nova Scotia in a region designated by UNESCO as a biosphere reserve because of its rich diversity of species.  Protected habitat includes large salt marshes, mud flats, rocky shores, white sand beaches and coastal forests, which are home to the provincially-endangered Nova Scotia mainland moose and federally-endangered piping plover. Nearby, there are four migratory bird sanctuaries which support thousands of overwintering waterfowl.

With the addition of these five properties, Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) has now protected approximately 647 hectares (1,600 acres) in Port Joli and more than 4,040 hectares (10,000 acres) in southwestern Nova Scotia.

Southwestern Nova Scotia is a priority area for NCC’s habitat conservation work due to the proximity of Thomas Raddall Provincial Park, Kejimikujik National Park, the Keji Seaside, and the Tobeatic Wilderness Area, which together support significant wildlife populations.

The Port Joli area conservation project was supported by funding from the Government of Canada through the Natural Areas Conservation Program, the Nova Scotia Crown Share Land Legacy Trust, and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service under the North American Wetlands Conservation Act, as well as many individual supporters.

A portion of this project was donated to the Nature Conservancy of Canada under the Government of Canada’s Ecological Gifts Program. This program provides enhanced tax incentives for individuals or corporations who donate ecologically significant land.

Quotes

“I would like to thank our land donors and supporters for helping Nature Conservancy of Canada assemble this large area of pristine coastline.  With more than 647 hectares (1,600 acres) protected forever in Port Joli, NCC is making a significant and long-term difference to wildlife on the South Shore.”

Craig Smith, NCC Program Director in Nova Scotia

“Our Government is proud to support additional conservation measures in this UNESCO-designated biosphere reserve. We are pleased to strengthen the protection of wildlife habitat here in Nova Scotia, and across Canada.”

The Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

“I want to congratulate the Nature Conservancy of Canada and thank the many donors who made this initiative possible. Together with the support of the Government of Canada, we are working to protect this important wildlife habitat and conserve the natural beauty of the South Shore for generations to come.”

Bernadette Jordan, Member of Parliament, South Shore—St. Margaret’s

“The salt marshes we entrusted to NCC have been in the Robertson family since the late 1700’s.  For generations they were very valuable properties because the marsh grass was a source of food for livestock. It is important to us that our family’s land be preserved in its natural state forever—for our kids and grandkids, and the entire community, to enjoy—which is why we chose to work with NCC.”

Danielle Robertson, land donor

“I am happy to have been able to participate in this project—to be able to make a difference and to help create a refuge for biodiversity in East Port L’Hebert.  I like NCC’s approach to conservation—people in our community will still be able to hunt and fish and use the lands as they have in the past.  The land will remain pretty much wild, as it has been for years, and not closed off for public use.”

Dirk Van Loon, land donor

Facts

  • The area is an important feeding and nesting area for shorebirds such as the black-bellied plover and the willet, as well as the piping plover which is listed as endangered under the Species at Risk Act
  • Rare lichens such as the Boreal Felt Lichen, Blue Felt Lichen and Vole Ears Lichen have been found on these sites
  • One of the properties is among the most significant sites for the provincially-endangered Nova Scotia mainland moose; the small popularion of 10-20 moose migrates from the interior to the coast in summer for cooler temperatures
  • The southwestern region of Nova Scotia was designated as a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Biosphere Reserve in 2001. It is one of only 18 such reserves in Canada, selected for ecological and cultural features.  There are more than 650 UNESCO Biosphere Reserves worldwide.

About

The Nature Conservancy of Canada has conserved more than 13,700 hectares (34,000 acres) in Nova Scotia. The Nature Conservancy of Canada is the nation's leading land conservation organization, working to protect our most important natural areas and the species they sustain. Since 1962 NCC and its partners have helped to protect more than 1.1 million hectares (over 2.8 million acres), coast to coast. For more information visit www.natureconservancy.ca/ns.

The Natural Areas Conservation Program (NACP) of the Government of Canada is a unique public–private partnership, managed and directed by the Nature Conservancy of Canada. To this day, $345 million has been invested in the NACP by the Government of Canada towards the conservation of our natural heritage. Moreover, an additional $500 million  in matching funds has been raised by NCC and its partners and invested in the program.

To learn more about the Ecological Gifts Program, please visit http://www.ec.gc.ca/pde-egp/.

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Media Contact:

Kathryn Morse
Director of Communications - Atlantic Provinces
1-866-319-5985

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