Located in the Chandos Lake area north of Apsley, the newly protected Keppler Nature Sanctuary is filled with many interesting natural features.
This 296 acre property contains a large wetland, mixed canopy forest, permanent streams, numerous vernal pools, and intermittent stream beds. The property is adjacent to more than 600 acres of Crown land.
Many years ago land donors, Christine and Hans Keppler got lost while hiking near their cottage with their two daughters. While they were lost and walking over this land they fell in love with the property which they call a “nature lover’s paradise” and bought it.
Watch a video about the property here:
After enjoying this area for many years the Keppler’s want to make sure the property continues to thrive and provide a home for the many species of animals and plants that are found there. To ensure it is protected forever, they have decided to donate it to KLT.
A wetland network, which is part of the Crowe River Watershed, as well as diverse forest habitat are maintained inside this stretch of land. Over 40 species of birds call this area home, including Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Pileated Woodpecker, Eastern Wood-pewee and Rose-breasted Grosbeak.
There is some evidence of historic logging on the property, but today the forests here are very healthy. Sugar maple dominated uplands and lowland hemlock and cedar stands are the two major types of forests on the property. The forest is diverse, teeming with numerous species of ferns and under-story species.
Wetlands on the property have not yet been evaluated provincially, but they include graminoid meadow marshes, a dewatered beaver pond, and forested swamps.
There is approximately 566 meters of permanent streams flowing through the North Western corner of the property and feeding into the surrounding seasonally flooded meadow marshes. A large, recently dewatered beaver pond occupies the North East corner of the property, and an active heronry is also present. These significant features provide critical habitat for many Species at Risk.
Hans and Christine shared that they chose to protect this property because “we recognize how environmentally sensitive it is. We have already witnessed how the landscape has changed over time.”
All communities on the property show very limited disturbance from recent logging or human uses, and are in good condition. Forested areas vary in age, but some pockets contain older and very large maples and hemlocks and abundant woody debris. A minority of areas contain younger and more immature pockets of forest.
KLT allows public access when it is compatible with the long term protection goals of the site and features, and correspond with the wishes of the land donor. This property will not be open for public access. Please visit our properties pages to discover which KLT protected properties have trails and are open for you to explore.
Learn more about the natural features of the Keppler Nature Sanctuary here!
Posted December 15, 2020.