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The North Gwillimbury Forest

Location of North Gwillimbury Forest


North Gwillimbury Forest

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The North Gwillimbury Forest runs along the south shore of Lake Simcoe in the Town of Georgina, stretching from Orchard Beach to Jackson’s Point. It is one of the ten largest remaining forested areas in the Lake Simcoe watershed and contains provincially signficant wetlands.

According to the Ministry of Natural Resources: "The Paradise Beach - Island Grove Wetlands are important for wildlife. Its 70 hectares of mixed and coniferous swamps and deciduous swamps with White Cedar in the understorey are locally significant for wintering White-tailed Deer. The swamps and associated upland forests support sensitive breeding forest bird species such as Pileated Woodpecker, White-throated Sparrow, Ovenbird and Ruffed Grouse. Waterfowl such as Mallard breed and stopover in the more open wetlands. The wetlands also support locally significant fish habitat "

The forest is used by walkers and birders, and by deer hunters in fall. It filters runoff into three streams that feed into Lake Simcoe and its sandy soils absorb rainwater and snow melt, helping to recharge local groundwater supplies. What's particularly important about the area is that connections between individual wetlands and forest areas remain largely intact, allowing for wildlife movement and species dispersal.

A large subdivision in this complex would break this connection and, in particular, would leave the Arnold C. Mathews Nature Reserve, established through the generosity of local residents, isolated and cutoff from the rest of the forest.

Map instructions: You can turn layers on and off by clicking the boxes in the legend. Use the magnifying glass tools at the top to zoom in and out.


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Cedar tree in wetland

The North Gwillimbury Forest includes the York Regional Forest and the Arnold C. Matthews Nature Reserve. The Reserve will be cut off from the rest of the forest by Metrus' proposed Maple Leaf Estates.


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