The Grondines Swamp
Victorin’s water-hemlock (photo by Frederic Coursol)
A unique ecosystem
The Grondines Swamp, which extends along seven kilometres of shoreline in the St. Lawrence’s freshwater estuary, is one of the last large-area treed swamps on the river.
It shelters several at-risk species, including plants that are endemic to the freshwater estuary, making it a rare biodiversity hotspot on a global scale, according to the Atlas de la biodiversité du Québec (Quebec biodiversity atlas). Conserving this intertidal zone helps protect numerous colonies of Victorin’s water-hemlock and Parker’s pipewort, two plants designated as threatened under the Quebec Act Respecting Threatened or Vulnerable Species (ARTVS). Both these species are found exclusively in the St. Lawrence’s estuary and that contribute to making the Grondines Swamp unique.
The 90 acres (36 hectares) protected by the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) includes a large floodplain forest and an intertidal zone, a portion of which is officially designated as a Waterfowl Gathering Area (WGA).
NCC has been helping to conserve this exceptional environment since 2008 and is currently conducting a restoration and enhancement project here.