Good news for turtles: New protected land added to Barren Meadow assemblage!

05 Jan 2022

Two hatchlings from Lumpy’s nest this past season, hatched on already protected Nature Trust land. Thanks to you, hatchlings just like these will have more space to grow up safely! Photo Credit: Jeffie McNeil

Just a few short weeks ago, we asked you to help give Nova Scotia’s endangered turtles a home for the holidays – and forever. Today we’re thrilled to report that, thanks to the outpouring of support from across the province and beyond, we have successfully protected a new 50 acre property in Barren Meadow!

This area of southwest Nova Scotia is one of several key areas of the province identified by researchers as critical for turtle conservation. With this new 50 acre property, the land in the Barren Meadow Brook area protected by the Nature Trust and the province together now totals approximately 4,500 protected and contiguous acres of critical habitat for endangered turtles and other wildlife.

A smiling Blanding’s Turtle, happy to have more protected habitat to explore safely. Photo credit: Jeffie McNeil

Protecting habitat is one of the most important ways we can help our province’s threatened turtles. They need safe places to live and to nest. They also need connected stretches of protected land to ensure that they can move safely around their habitat. Turtles are known for moving slowly, but they are also very slow to reproduce. The Blanding’s Turtle, for example, takes twenty years to reach maturity and begin to reproduce; once they do, only a very small percentage of their hatchlings are likely to survive. Protecting them from threats like car traffic gives each turtle a better chance of reaching maturity and increasing the population.

The Barren Meadow assemblage also provides habitat for multiple species at risk in addition to the Blanding’s Turtles, including threatened Eastern Ribbonsnake and several bird species.

We’re so grateful to all of you who came out of your shells to make a holiday gift – and we’re turtle-y thrilled to be able to kick off the new year with such good news!

Get the latest conservation news in your inbox