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Showing posts from July, 2010

stepping up the battle for trails

I share the columnist's (see below) angst about some of the trail closures in Cootes Paradise and the observation that the impacts of walking on habitat are less damaging than driving. Nevertheless, I can appreciate that some of the trails can and should be closed to preserve sensitive habitat. It is because Cootes is surrounded by a city that the impacts of both cars and yes, even feet, can cumulatively degrade the integrity of this nature sanctuary. Blocking trails with bushes generally seems to occur on "unofficial" trails, though I have   previously expressed my concern with closing trails that once provided access through Cootes to hook up with the Spencer Creek Trail in Dundas. The utility of a trail as a path to someplace, rather than just a recreational loop, means a lot to me , and I have hoped the RBG would reconsider the trails layout with this in mind. Again, with so many people accessing Cootes, on foot and on mountain-bikes, the threat

Parks Protect Biodiversity

The Canadian Parks and Wildlife Service (CPAWS) has released their annual report and the findings, while not surprising, act as a reminder of the importance of limiting development where species at risk are concerned. The CPAWS report addresses large parks, but the findings are easily transferable to Hamilton's largest urban wildlife reserve in Cootes Paradise. Wildlife benefit from large uninterrupted natural areas,with roads and other developments being a negative influence, to the point of extirpation for vulnerable species. The report recommends: Creating new parks and expanding existing park boundaries; Maintaining and restoring wildlife movement corridors (so that wildlife have the large ranges they often need); Restricting roads and other damaging developments; Limiting recreational activities; and Practicing good park management focused on healthy ecosystems as a first priority.  We have seen the Royal Botanical Gardens move to limit some recreational activ

walk about vision

A chance to catch the vision for east Dundas!: Dundas Eco-Gateway Plan Walk-About What’s a Walk-About? It’s a tour of the study area to show the public the potential changes to the area when the Dundas Eco-Gateway Plan is implemented. It’s also a great way to get some exercise and see one of Hamilton’s beautiful natural areas that has the potential to be so much more. The Hamilton Conservation Authority, the City of Hamilton and Royal Botanical Gardens have developed a draft plan for the “Dundas Eco-Gateway Plan”. The plan presents a future vision for natural area preservation and trail linkages along Cootes Drive in Dundas, from McMaster University to Main Street. It also includes a more detailed design plan for King Street East in Dundas, from East Street to Olympic Drive. The detailed design includes a rehabilitation plan for the former Veldhuis Greenhouse site. Join us if you can, and wear appropriate footwear. Date: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 (weather permitt

best practices

The eastern end of Dundas could really use a vision , and this project has it in spades. The potential for the canal property to be the catalyst for beneficial and transformative changes to this area of town that has been the subject of so much recent controversy . The philosophy that guides the plan is absolutely what we need more of: restoration of natural habitats . The only bit of information I would add to the article is the danger the intersection of King and Olympic presents. I've seen some awfully close calls when cars make a left turn onto Olympic here. Closing King would not be a big deal, really . C'mon Hamilton, get over your cars first ideals. Plans for former greenhouse property move ahead Fundraising and approval for project are starting now Craig Campbell, Dundas Star News Staff,  Published on Jul 01, 2010 A phase three environmental assessment to determine if soil contamination is leaching into the Desjardins Canal will take place after Hamilt

work for free: free nature!

  Get involved in helping to protect and care for land in your community Come help us   protect natural areas   restore habitat   build and maintain trails Get outside   *   M eet new people    *   Le arn about nature and why it matters    *   J oin in the spirit and reward of doing important work!      Volunteer with the Head-of-the-Lake Land Trust program! Whether you're interested in exploring the magnificent natural areas in our region, or you're a "people person" with keen planning and organization skills, the Head-of-the-Lake Land Trust program has a volunteer position with your name on it. Several kinds of volunteer opportunities with the HLT program are available, including caring for the nature sanctuaries, helping with special events, fundraising, and communications.   Or tell us about your ideas or skills and we can work with you to create ways for you to hel