Balsam Lake, Kawartha Lakes
Open to public:
A unique aspect of Kawartha Land Trust’s (KLT) 72-acre Balsam Lake Wetland Property is that 100% of the property is located within a Provincially Significant Wetland (PSW) — the Balsam Lake South Bay PSW.
Additionally, the entirety of the property is located within Kawarthas Naturally Connected Preferred Scenario and it is located close to other KLT-protected properties, including DeNure CEA, Fell Wetland, Jones Woodlot, and Cation Wildlife Preserve.
KLT’s Balsam Lake Wetland features 450 metres of natural shoreline on Balsam Lake and several wetland ecosystems — essential habitat for frogs, turtles, aquatic birds and other wetland-loving creatures.
The most distinguishable feature of the property is a cattail marsh that abuts the lake and then slowly transitions into a mixture of treed swamp ecosystems that are found throughout the rest of the property.
During KLT’s visits to the property, wildlife was seen at every turn — or shall we say, at every paddle.
Along the edges of the Alder swamp, a number of bird species were sighted, including Green Heron, Great Blue Heron, White-throated and Song Sparrows, Eastern Kingbird, Cedar Waxwing, Belted Kingfisher, Mallard, and Double-crested Cormorant. American Bullfrogs and at-risk Snapping Turtles were also observed.
The Eastern White Cedar swamp is home to several beaver dams and lodges, some of which showed signs of new activity. Black-capped Chickadees and at-risk Eastern Wood-Pewees were also seen in this section of the property.
Adjacent the cattail marsh, a family of Trumpeter Swans and pair of Common Loons were spotted.
This donation was a collaboration between conservation organizations. As this property no longer fit the mandate of Kawartha Conservation (KC), KC donated the property to KLT to ensure its permanent protection. Funding from the National Heritage Conservation Program covered the costs of the project, which allowed KLT to accept the donation of land.
The continued protection of this wetland paradise will ensure that it remains a place vibrant with wildlife for years to come.
The Government of Canada’s Natural Heritage Conservation Program (NHCP) is a unique public-private partnership to support new protected and conserved areas by securing private lands and private interests in lands. The program is managed by the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC). Federal funds invested in the program are matched with contributions raised by NCC and its partners, Ducks Unlimited Canada and the country’s land trust community.
Le Programme de conservation du patrimoine naturel (PCPN) du Gouvernement du Canada est un partenariat public-privé unique destiné à appuyer la création de nouvelles aires protégées et conservées grâce à l’acquisition de terres privées ou de droits sur ces dernières. Le programme est administré par Conservation de la nature Canada (CNC). Les fonds investis par le gouvernement fédéral dans le programme sont bonifiés par des contributions de contrepartie amassées par CNC et ses partenaires, Canards Illimités Canada et la communauté des organismes de conservation du Canada.