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McWilliams Family Property: Christie Bentham Wetland Project

KLT is pleased to announce that John and Susan McWilliams are donating a property to Kawartha Land Trust (KLT) as a part of the Christie Bentham Wetland project! The McWilliams Family Property is a 32-acre property located in the Stony Lake area, just south of Burleigh Falls and adjacent to the Christie Bentham Wetland project. With the addition of this property, the Christie Bentham Wetland is 170 acres of significant protected land!

John McWilliams is the Vice-Chair of KLT’s Board of Directors. He and Susan have been members of the Stony Lake cottager’s community for many years. They have chosen to donate this property to KLT to preserve the significant wetland it contains.

John and Susan McWilliams

“Our natural landscape is disappearing too fast; we want to help conserve and protect the land and enable others to enjoy it.” John and Susan said.

The McWilliams property is predominantly dominated by granite bedrock. It is an area of transition and high biodiversity known as The Land Between. “The Land Between bioregion extends from the Georgian Bay Coast to the Ottawa Valley. It’s the last intact wilderness in southern Ontario and a land of hope. The region keeps us healthy, and provides refuge for amazing wildlife. It’s a fragile place where urban sprawl and habitat reduction will compromise our collective well-being in Ontario.” (

The forest on the property is part of a forested corridor which extends south towards Young’s Point. There are many mature trees present, and forest structure indicative of natural forest succession. Evidence of deer and coyote use and natural processes such as flooding by beavers is also present on this land. Birds such as Scarlet Tanager and Pileated Woodpecker as well as Oven Bird and Veery were observed on the property during breeding season.

Where the wetland empties into Stony

The property contains a portion of a Provincially Significant Wetland (PSW) which contributes to the water quality of surrounding Bays, Stony and Clear Lake and provides vital habitat to breeding fish, birds and numerous Species at Risk.

To learn more about the Christie Bentham Wetland project and what makes this land, with the addition of the McWilliams Family property significant, please visit

Posted November 6, 2020.

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