Letter: Nature Conservancy announces massive Vidal Bay purchase

Fundraising for 18,800-acre conservation acquisition underway

To the Expositor:

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) wishes to share with the communities of Manitoulin Island our intention to purchase a significant property on the Island, located at Vidal Bay. The property is an incredible 7,608-hectares (18,800-acres). NCC is currently fundraising in order to purchase the property in early 2021.

NCC is a not-for-profit, charitable organization focused on the conservation of Canada’s most ecologically sensitive lands. Since 1962, we have worked with communities across the country to conserve over 14 million hectares (35 million acres). Boasting globally rare alvar communities, coastal cliffs, over 18 kilometers of undeveloped Lake Huron shoreline, inland lakes and wetlands, and intact forest systems, the Vidal Bay property presents an incredible opportunity to conserve a vast coastal wilderness south of the Canadian shield in Ontario and the unique species it sustains. 

NCC’s motivation for purchasing the property is to maintain the significant habitats and species that are found there. In addition, we want to conserve the land for people to enjoy in ways that are compatible with these goals. If NCC is successful in raising the funds necessary to purchase this property, we would welcome the opportunity to work with First Nations communities, townships, local politicians and representatives from tourism and business groups to ensure the lands are managed and promoted in a manner that provides traditional, economic and recreational benefits to the local community. We will also welcome the help of those interested in managing the land.

NCC owns significant lands on Cockburn Island and is very much aware of local community issues and looks forward to continuing to work closely with the community with a view to a successful outcome for everyone.

For the time being, our focus is raising the funds necessary to acquire the property, and we would be grateful for your support. If you are interested in making a charitable donation in support of this project or if you have questions, please contact NCC at ontario@natureconservancy.ca.

Sincerely,

Mike Hendren

Regional Vice President, Ontario

Nature Conservancy of Canada