100 acres of critical habitat secured near Ponhook Lake

17 Feb 2023

Nearly 100 acres of important habitat for rare or sensitive species have been secured near Ponhook Lake in Kespukwitk-southwest Nova Scotia, adding to a growing assemblage of nearby public and private conservation lands, including the Nature Trust’s Cameron Lake conservation lands and the provincial Ponhook Lake Nature Reserve.

Red Root in full bloom

The picturesque area is located within the lower reaches of St. Mary Bay and the LaHave Drumlins Natural Landscape, making it what many consider a “cottage country” and has made much of the area highly subdivided and under increasing threat of development – which makes this conservation win extra special.

The conservation community recognizes Ponhook Lake and other nearby waterbodies as a priority location for Atlantic Coastal Plain Flora (ACPF), including the vulnerable Red Root and several other uncommon and rare plants. The riparian wetlands along the nearby shores of Beartrap, Cameron, and Ponhook lakes also provide critical habitat for the threatened Eastern Ribbonsnake.

Much of the property consists of mature forest, which provide important habitat for a diversity of species, including those of conservation concern within the province. Mature trees are also better at storing large amounts of carbon due to their size and longevity.

Some local and nearby residents recall the property being near what was known as the “Grindstone Crank”, a local nickname for an area near the narrows at the end of Peters Point, which had a blasted channel connecting Medway River into Ponhook Lake. Before the twentieth century, this area was frequented by a steamboat that travelled to nearby communities Greenfield, Camerons Landing and Molega.

Major support for the protection of this property was provided through Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Priority Place–Species at Risk program, as well as the Nova Scotia Crown Share Land Legacy Trust. The remaining funds required to acquire and provide the long-term care and stewardship of the new protected areas were raised through public donations. Thank you to everyone who made this conservation win possible!

You too can help play an important part in conserving areas like Ponhook Lake – areas that provide critical habitat for endangered species in Nova Scotia – by supporting the Nature Trust’s Twice the Wild campaign.

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