Frontenac Arch Biosphere Reserve, ON (Episode 2): Striking Balance Series 2
Catalogue Number: LIV033
Producer: Inspired Planet Ideas
Producing Agencies: Striking Balance Inc.
Subject: Biography, Canadian Geography, Documentary, Environmental Justice, Environmental Studies, Geography, Indigenous Issues, Nature, Physical Geography, Science
Grade Level: 6 - 8, 9 - 12, Post Secondary
Country Of Origin: Canada
Copyright Year: 2020
Running Time: 50:00
The heart of eastern North America's last intact forest corridor is threatened by pressure for housing development, but the people of Ontario's Frontenac Arch Biosphere Reserve are determined to protect it. This forest covered granite band connections the Algonquin Highlands of the Canadian Shield with the Adirondack Mountains in New York State, resulting in a high level of biodiversity but also at least three at risk species.
After farming attempts in this terrain failed in the 1880's, the forest regenerated in the Arch. It was recognized as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 2002. Increased human activity restricts migratory pathways and biodiversity. Highways are the largest cause of vertebrate mortalities. Boat travel also impacts lake ecosystems. Map turtles are especially vulnerable to carapace damage from propellers. Planned upgrades to the Rideau Canal may include changes that will reduce its ecological impact.
Encouraging development in existing communities is one way to preserve the Arch. The restored Opinicon Resort has jumpstarted the local economy without further fragmenting the Arch, working to develop respect for the interconnectedness of nature. The Nature Conservancy of Canada has been purchasing and accepting donations of intact natural land in this area to protect it from development and they also remove invasive plants from the area.
Parks Canada and The Mohawks of Akwesasne partner in a hunt to control the deer population and also reconnect youth to the land; the meat is used in a Mohawk naming ceremony. The Frontenac Arch Biosphere Nature Camp is dedicated to connecting young future decision-makers to nature. The community needs to be an integrated part of the landscape.
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