Skip to content

“Let’s Get Wild” Event a Big Success

June 27, 2018

By Brian Reid

What could be more adorable than a baby porcupine? How about a de-scented skunk, a baby woodchuck, a pair of silver fox pups named Ebony and Copper, or an adolescent bobcat!

bobcat

Adolescent Bobcat

These animal ambassadors and their human handlers from Soper Creek Wildlife Rescue delighted a crowd of about 60 people at the Samuel Wilmot Nature Area on Saturday June 9th.

Soper Creek Wildlife Rescue is Durham’s only Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre and is licensed by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and Canadian Wildlife Services to rescue, rehabilitate, and release sick, injured, abandoned, and orphaned wildlife. It also conducts educational programming sessions in schools and elsewhere.

educators

Wildlife Educators

Wildlife Educators Jaquie Rombough, Rhiannon Lace, and Tristian Loughlin engaged the excited children in an informative discussion about the differences between herbivores, omnivores, and carnivores and displayed a variety of pelts, skulls, and scat samples. The “animal ambassadors” were introduced in turn with a brief story about how they came to be at the Rescue Centre and were then circulated through the crowd to allow everyone the opportunity to see them up close – and even pet them.

Jackie Winterfield

Event sponsor Jackie Winterfield snuggles with one of two silver fox pups brought by the team.

“Let’s Get Wild” was organized by the Samuel Wilmot Nature Area Advisory Committee and was sponsored by Newcastle resident Jackie Winterfield of Re/Max Hallmark First Group Realty.

Thank you Jackie for making this event possible!

Advertisements

Pollinator Event

March 7, 2018

Wilmot-Pollinator event poster

SWNA HOSTS SALMON TALK

March 2, 2018

Might we once again see Atlantic Salmon moving up Wilmot Creek to spawn?

Until the early part of the 19th century, Wilmot Creek was a major spawning stream for this prized fish. By the mid-1800s, however, overfishing, shoreline degradation, sedimentation etc. had combined to reduce salmon stocks dramatically – here and throughout the entire Lake Ontario watershed.

Samuel Wilmot, after whom the creek and our own nature area are named, began to experiment with the artificial propagation of Atlantic Salmon on his farm along Wilmot Creek in the late 1860s. Within a few years, he was Superintendent of Fish Culture for all of Canada and built and managed 15 fish hatcheries across the country. Unfortunately, in spite of the large numbers of fry introduced during his tenure, the Atlantic Salmon population did not recover and was considered extirpated from Lake Ontario by 1898.

That was then. On Thursday February 22nd, 2018, representatives of the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry were on hand at the Newcastle Public Library to present information on an exciting program to reintroduce Atlantic Salmon to the Great Lakes.   Colin Lake , Lead Planning Biologist with the Ministry, Dr. Kathryn Peiman, Coordinator of the Atlantic Salmon Restoration Program for OFAH, and Mr. Chris Robinson, Conservation Program Manager with OFAH, provided a comprehensive overview of the program. Topics covered included the life cycle of the Atlantic Salmon, a chronology of various stocking initiatives, current plans and strategies to reintroduce the species and mechanisms and technologies used to monitor progress. The speakers concluded the session by fielding questions from the many well informed anglers and residents who attended. You are invited to visit www.bringbackthe salmon.ca to learn more about this exciting program.

 

SOMETHING’s FISHY!

February 21, 2018

JUST A REMINDER OF A SPECIAL PRESENTATION ON THE RESTORATION OF ATLANTIC SALMON TO THE GREAT LAKES WATERSHED on THURSDAY FEBRUARY 22nd , 7:00 p.m. AT THE NEWCASTLE PUBLIC LIBRARY

Great Lakes Atlantic Salmon

Great Lake Atlantic Salmon Restoration Program

January 30, 2018

 

Great Lakes Atlantic Salmon

FALL CLEANUP COMPLETED

November 7, 2017

A small but energetic group of volunteers braved the cool temperatures and overcast skies on Saturday November 4th to complete a cleanup of the Nature Area.

A fall cleanup is undertaken every year and includes the trails and pathways along Wilmot Creek itself.

“It is encouraging that members of the community are prepared to assist the Nature Area Committee volunteers “said Committee Chairperson Brian Reid. “ But it is troublesome to see the amount of garbage that still seems to “miss “the receptacles that are provided at numerous locations throughout the trail network. “ Particularly irksome is the debris left behind by some anglers – everything from broken lawn chairs and fishing rods to empty styrofoam bait containers. “Worst of all ” , said Reid, “is discarded fishing line which poses a serious threat to birds and other wildlife.”

Fortunately, there are far more people who respect and enjoy the Nature Area than there are those who abuse it.

Many thanks to all who assisted with the cleanup this year and to all who make the effort to keep the Nature Area a clean and pleasant place to visit.

CAN YOU DIG IT?!

November 1, 2017

By Brian Reid

WE DID — 200 TIMES!!

 

On Saturday, October 21st, members of the Samuel Wilmot Nature Area Advisory Committee and 25 community volunteers, planted 200 trees on Nature Area lands as part of the Highway of Heroes Living Tribute project.

SWNA Can you Dig it (1)

The trees were provided by the Highway of Heroes group – non-profit organization who have undertaken the task of planting 117,000 trees along a corridor of Highway 401 from Trenton to Toronto, Ontario.  Each tree represents a Canadian soldier who has been killed in combat since Canada became a nation in 1867.  Funding for the project is provided y corporate and private donations.

Can you Dig it (2)

“It was wonderful to see so many people come out to volunteer their time and energy in support of this project said SWNA Committee Chairperson, Brian Reid.  “We owe a special thank you to Lloyd’s Landscaping of Enniskillen”, said Reid.  President, Brian Cotter arranged for the firm to provide equipment and an operator to pre-dig the 200 large holes required for the project.  Much of the planting was done in an area of heavy ground cover.  “To have done this all manually would have taken days”, said Reid.

SWNA Can you Dig it (3)

Regional Councillor Willie Woo welcomed and thanked the volunteers on behalf of Mayor Adrian Foster.  Mike Hurley, Manager of Fundraising and Communications for the Highway of Heroes Living Tribute, was on hand to express appreciation from his group.

SWNA Can you Dig it (4)

SWNA Can you Dig it (5)

The Samuel Wilmot Nature Area Advisory Committee would like to thank everyone who contributed to making this worthwhile project such a success.

Thanks for “digging in”!!

SWNA Can you Dig it (6)

Article by Brian Reid

Photos by Leo Blindenbach, Kate Potter and Brian Reid