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Conservation Committee News March 2024

Avian Influenza

There have been no reports of large die offs of Canada Geese since the 200+ carcasses found in the Lake Ontario Park – Elevator Bay area at the beginning of February.

However, sporadic dead birds have been reported throughout the Kingston region, and are continuing to be reported, so the future is still uncertain.

Crows In Kingston

Steve Manders research continues to be intriguing, as he finds that the habits of the crows keep changing.

Steve has been trying to establish the routes that the crows are taking into the city in the evening. To help with his research, the KFN hired an aircraft for an hour in which Steve tried to observe the crows as they gathered north of Kingston. Lesley Rudy accompanied Steve, but they could not spot the crows from the air.

Asian Carp

A single Grass Carp was found in the Bay of Quinte last summer.  Where this fish came from is a mystery!

For more information see the Invasive Species Center website at https://www.invasivespeciescentre.ca.

The ISC is hosting a webinar on “Early Detection Surveillance of Grass Carp: Captures and Response Efforts” at 11 AM on Thursday March 7th. For more information and/or to register go to Webinar Registration – Zoom.

Ontario Land Tribunal Hearing On The Davis Tannery Proposal

The hearing began on Monday, February 5th and is scheduled to last five weeks.

Vicki Schmolka is producing a daily summary of the hearing at  https://vickischmolka.substack.com.

As part of the hearing, Patry Developments have to describe the four buildings they plan to construct if the Official Plan schedule is changed.

I find it very frustrating that the hearing involves detailed questions on topics such as the number of parking spaces to be provided, but is not looking into issues such as the impact of stormwater runoff on the Cataraqui River, as that is considered an engineering issue!

The hearing has also involved many questions about the visual impact of the proposed buildings, and restoration of the shoreline after construction. – The developer has described landscaping and tree planting that would be done after construction, but there is no way of ensuring that promises made during the hearing would be carried out after construction!

Many thanks to Vicki, to No Clearcuts Kingston, and to everybody involved in supporting Council’s decision to refuse the rezoning, for their perseverance and commitment to protecting the Inner Harbour area.

Prince Edward Point National Wildlife Area

The Canadian Wildlife Service which administers the National Wildlife Area is removing structures from an old fishing village in order to return the area to a “natural state”.

The structures included an old shed which has been used as a nesting site by Barn Swallows for many years. CWS planned to demolish this shed even though Barn Swallows are a species at risk, categorized as Threatened federally and of Special Concern in Ontario.

Members of The Prince Edward County Field Naturalists and the South Shore Joint Initiative protested very strongly against the demolition.

I wrote a letter supporting PECFN and the SSJI, but all the protests were to no avail.

It felt bizarre to be protesting against the Canadian Wildlife Service!


Chris Hargreaves – Chair: Kingston Field Naturalists’ Conservation Committee

The Conservation Committee is organized on an informal basis – members receive a monthly report by email, and are invited to respond and/or help on any of the topics that particularly interest them, and/or to raise new issues. Additional members would be most welcome: just email conservation@kingstonfieldnaturalists.org if you would like to be added to the mailing list.