The race continues to save 3 rare coastal gems – with your help
16 Sep 2021
Although summer has wound to a close, Nova Scotians know that the magic of our coastline is stunning year-round – and the Nature Trust is taking action to save our coastal legacy, before it’s too late. Right now, the Nature Trust has a rare opportunity to save and protect, forever, three iconic coastal properties that span the province, from the southwest shore to the tip of Cape Breton – and we need your help.
The proposed new protected areas include a pristine coastal island, South Shore beach and wetlands, and stunning Cape Breton coastal highlands. With only two weeks to raise the final $200,000 needed to protect and steward all three properties in perpetuity, we’re calling on the public to donate today to save some of the best of Nova Scotia’s beloved coast.
Like many natural areas across the planet, Nova Scotia’s ocean playground is at risk. Over 85% of Nova Scotia’s coast is privately owned, highly fragmented, and vulnerable to increasing development pressures. Diverse coastal habitats and the wildlife they support are disappearing, and opportunities for protection are notoriously rare.
But the Nature Trust offers hope. We have ramped up land conservation efforts significantly with our Twice the Wild campaign, an ambitious commitment to double our protected lands across the province by 2025.
“We are in a race against time,” explains Bonnie Sutherland, Executive Director of the Nature Trust. “The nature we love, especially our beloved beaches, headlands and islands, faces unprecedented climate change and biodiversity loss. The urgency is amplified even more by dramatic real estate pressures putting our coastal legacy at risk. We need to do more, and to act more quickly. Today we’re giving Nova Scotians that chance. They can help us add three irreplaceable coastal gems to our natural legacy by donating today.”
The Nature Trust is asking citizens to step up to save the nature they love and to help protect public access to our coast—places to hike and paddle, surf and birdwatch, and to find solitude on a quiet beach or island. With public donations of $200,000 and the matching funds those gifts leverage, the Nature Trust can realize a $1,000,000 coastal conservation win.
Lowland Cove showcases Cape Breton’s incredible coastal mountains and rugged wildness. This iconic 100 acre property is one of the last ‘inholdings’ of private land within the Polletts Cove – Aspy Fault Wilderness Area. Beyond protecting important coastal habitats and ensuring landscape connectivity for wildlife, saving this property removes a key hurdle to linking together the Seawall Trail —an inspiring 48 kilometer trek along the incredible cliffs, barrens and highlands of Northern Cape Breton.
Sand Beach is a beloved coastal oasis enjoyed by generations of local families and visitors keen to explore easily accessible wild coastline. Its 154 acres of diverse habitats include stunning sand beach, dunes, barrens, carbon-rich peatlands, and coastal forest. The land provides refuge for migratory and nesting birds, and endangered species including several species of birds, turtles and lichen. Funds raised will help the Nature Trust meet its promise to preserve the property, in perpetuity, through ongoing and active stewardship.
Middle Island is the last unsecured island in a coastal archipelago protected by the Nature Trust, the Nature Conservancy of Canada and the Province. Located off Cherry Hill beach, near Port Medway (south shore), the island is a key waypoint on the Atlantic Flyway, a “bird highway” essential to feeding, resting, and breeding for many migratory birds. Its protection ensures the long-term ecological integrity of the entire island chain. Its protection also supports the movement of bird colonies within and beyond the archipelago – a critical step in helping to address rapid decline in global bird populations and impacts of climate change.
“These three unique properties encompass all we love about our coast – and what we can’t afford to lose,” says Sutherland. “Two weeks is tight to raise $200,000, but we’ve seen how much nature matters to Nova Scotians. And since every dollar donated unlocks four more, every gift makes a big difference. Each $100 gift means $500, each $1,000 means $5,000, to save the coast – it’s an awesome opportunity for Nova Scotians, young and old, to step up to save our treasured coast.”
The Nature Trust needs to raise $200,000 by September 29 to save, steward, and protect forever, these three irreplaceable coastal gems.