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Prairie and Savanna Stewardship in Southern Ontario:
Providing Habitat Management to Ontario's Land Stewards

The Habitat Stewardship Program (HSP) allocates funds to projects that conserve and protect species at risk and their habitats and to help preserve biodiversity in Ontario. These funds promote the participation of local communities to help with the recovery of species at risk and prevent other species from becoming a conservation concern. 

TgO obtained a 3 year funding commitment (2013-15) to contact landowners and undertake prairie and savanna management on critical sites for the recovery of species at risk. This project focused on remnant and created prairie and savanna communities in southern Ontario, with emphasis placed within three physiographic regions St. Clair Plains (portions of Essex, Kent and Lambton), the Iroquois Plans (portions of Hamilton and Toronto) and the Norfolk Sand Plain (portions of Norfolk, Brant and Hamilton). Over 40 landowners received service from this grant over a 3 year period.

The Tallgrass communities in these three regional priority areas support the presence of numerous species at risk including Mississauga Rattlesnake, Eastern Foxsnake, Butler’s Gartersnake, Henslow’s Sparrow, American Badger, Dense Blazing Star, and Hoary Mountain Mint.

Tallgrass Prairie

This three year project addressed the threat of habitat loss through the absence of management. Prairies and savannas require some form of management (disturbance) on a routine basis to prevent succession into shrub thicket. In the past prairies and savannas on private land were primarily managed with the support of Stewardship Councils. This project will bridge the gap in services left by the disappearance of Stewardship Councils or by the decreased capacity of those Stewardship Councils that are continuing.

Prescribed burn

Completed stewardship activities include prescribed burning, invasive species removal, control of competing native vegetation, enlargement of remnant tallgrass areas, mowing of sites where prescribedburning is not possible and other management activities.

Properties that received maintenance 2013-2015

Map Reference

 

Project Name YEAR 1

City/Town Near

1

Bender and Graves

Nobleton

2

Olmstead

Hamilton

3

MacDonald

Norwich

4

Foxcroft

Delhi

5

Van Kleef

Simcoe

6

Tosswill

Courtland

7

Scoff

Walsingham

8

LaForge

Walsingham

9

Friends of Pinery

Port Franks

10

Kenesserie

Highgate

11

Cadotte Rex Club

Mitchell’s Bay

 

Project Name YEAR 2

City/Town Near

12

Aylmer Wildlife Area-Elgin Stewardship Council

Aylmer

13

Blue Lake (Pat Clemons)

Saint George

14

Fern Hill

Burlington

15

Rupert WA (Brenda Lorenz)

Brights Grove

16

York Nobleton-Mun of York

Nobleton

17

Jack Addison

Vittoria

18

Steve and Anita Buehner

Waterford5

19

Murray Pearson

Glen Morris

20

Murphy

Port Lambton

21

Ed Paling

Ayr

22

Jim Brown

Burford

23

LTVCA Sharon’s Creek

Delaware

24

Benn

Wallaceburg

25

Vandamme

Thamesville

26

Van Kleef

Simcoe

 

Project Name YEAR 3

City/Town Near

27

Towell

Alvinston

28

Rare

Preston

29

Paling

Ayr

30

Paddy Greene

Ancaster

31

Mathieson

Wilkesport

32

Skakel

Thamesville

33

Moravian

Moraviantown

34

Hubble

Thamesville

35

White

Kent Bridge

36

Higgs

Sparta

37

Koopman

Kent Bridge

38

Pumfrey

Kent Bridge

39

Richards

Clandeboye

40

Brant Stewardship

Paris

41

Watermann

Delhi

42

Windsor Parks

Windsor

43

Hamilton Parks

Hamilton