Toward a
thriving world

Explore additional content for the fall 2022 issue of the Nature Conservancy of Canada Magazine


My wish for the future

We need nature to survive, and wildlife species deserve more respect than how we’ve treated them in the past (page 3).

Dear Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC),

My name is Ashley and, for me, spending time in nature is so important! When I am in nature, even just looking around or listening to the sounds helps me understand my place in the world and my connection to nature. We need nature to survive, and wildlife species deserve more respect than how we’ve treated them in the past.

Right now, the world is pretty messed up, but there are so many good people making big changes to help fix our past mistakes. I can already see the world around us changing and improving. People are working toward taking action on climate change, removing invasive species and protecting habitats. Over time, if more people learn how important nature is and learn how to respect it, I believe that people will take combined action and help change the world.

My wish for the future is for everyone in the world to appreciate and care for the world as much as NCC does and as much as I do. One way that I’ve done this is by learning about native wildlife and helping my mom plant native flowers at home. Some of my favourite native plants are skunk cabbage and blanket flower. I also love red foxes and eastern milk snakes, which are native to where I live. When I learned about these species, I grew to love them more, and I want to share my passion for wildlife with others. One way I share my passion is through art.

Thank you for reading my letter,

Feature story

Accelerating the pace of conservation

As NCC turns 60, it looks ahead to doubling the impact it has had since 1962, using its expertise and relationships to dramatically accelerate the pace of conservation (page 6). Take a journey through a couple of the properties that have got us to this point:

The 1,340-hectare Cavan Swamp Wildlife Area near Peterborough, ON.

In the early 1960s a plucky band of naturalists based in Ontario had a bold idea. Stung by the damage to the natural world they saw all around them, they launched a program to take direct, private action to protect natural spaces and promote conservation. At the time it was an audacious plan. It was also the birth of the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC).

NCC’s first large project was Cavan Swamp and Bog in Ontario — an exceptional complex of bogs and other wetlands covering about 1,340 hectares. The site is now the Cavan Swamp Wildlife Area and shelters an abundance of wildlife, including 22 species of orchids.

The 33-hectare Cowichan Garry Oak Preserve near Duncan, BC.

Since its early days, NCC has now expanded in all provinces across the country. Our supporters have helped us secure 15 million hectares from coast to coast to coast, including in such special places as the Cowichan Garry Oak Preserve in BC, secured in 1999. While so little of this ecosystem remains in a natural state, more than 100 species at risk still depend on it.

The Cowican Garry Oak Preserve’s large, gnarled trees provide shelter for gartersnakes, black-tailed deer and a variety of birds. In the surrounding meadows, bees hum around native wildflowers and plants, such as camas, chocolate lily and Howell’s triteleia. Meanwhile, a small creek bears fish through a stand of mature Douglas-fir and down to the Quamichan wetlands. There, at the edge of Quamichan Lake, rest flocks of migratory birds and tree frogs nestled in the branches.

Indigenous collaboration

Walking together on the land

Lessons learned and perspectives gained from Indigenous communities in becoming better caretakers of the land (page 16).

The dynamics of conservation in Canada are changing. Today, Indigenous Peoples are increasingly being heard and recognized as conservation decision-makers and stewards of the land. NCC acknowledges that Indigenous Peoples have protected and cared for the natural areas, plants and wildlife that have sustained them for millennia.

NCC has much to learn from Indigenous Peoples across Canada that will help us to become better land managers and conservationists. NCC, as a leading conservation organization, also has a unique opportunity to contribute the skills we have acquired to assist Indigenous communities and Nations to achieve their conservation and stewardship goals.

The map below showcases some of the collaborations we are engaged in with Indigenous communities across the land.