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Help us expand Sydenham River Nature Reserve

MacSorley parcel, Sydenham River Nature Reserve © Smera Sukumar


Ontario Nature has an incredible opportunity right now to protect 100 acres of land, expanding our Sydenham River Nature Reserve by more than 50 percent.

Habitat loss in this region is alarming: 98 percent of native Carolinian habitat is already gone. What was once a nearly continuous forest in southern Ontario is now a patchwork of urban space, farms, and factories and the remaining fragments are virtual “islands of green”.

To date, 38 species at risk and 28 rare species have been observed on or near our Sydenham River Nature Reserve, and this 100-acre expansion is home to many of them.

Virginia bluebells, MacSorley parcel © Caroline Schultz

The Property

The 100-acre property contains mostly mature forest and wetlands, along with a portion of disused farm field, much like the adjacent Sydenham River Nature Reserve.

We will restore the farm field to a tall grass prairie meadow, and over time it will mature into contiguous Carolinian forest and wetland habitat.

How You Can Help

Ontario Nature urgently needs your help to raise $625,000 to purchase and protect this property forever. You can help by making your gift today online or by calling Kiran at 1-800-440-2366 ext. 234. You can also mail us a cheque marked “nature reserve expansion”. Thank you!

Want to mark your celebration by protecting nature? You can protect a piece of nature forever in celebration of your wedding or anniversary. Contact Kate at kated@ontarionature.org.

Donors who give over $1,000 will have their name added to the nature reserve’s welcome sign to recognize their generosity.

Cerulean warbler © JanetandPhil CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
The lure to this part of southwestern Ontario is a chance to visit the Carolinian zone. When I was teaching about Ontario’s natural history, I made sure to highlight the Carolinian ecosystem to my students. Few knew it existed. Rare this, endangered that, so little left – all are common themes.

With that uniqueness in mind, when the chance came to preserve some superb Carolinian habitat. I was happy to donate to the original Sydenham purchase.

Sydenham shouts ‘CAROLINIAN’. To obtain land adjoining the existing reserve is such a bonus that we can’t, and shouldn’t, let it pass into private hands. I’ve already donated as it was such a no-brainer to create one large, continuous, protected habitat.

I hope other members of Ontario Nature (and anyone else!) will join me in acquiring this special place.
Professor Mike Badyk (Retired)

Mike and Natalie Badyk at Lyal Island Nature Reserve

Follow our progress as we get closer to our goal of raising $625,000!

Thank you to all the generous donors who have already contributed towards the protection of this property.

Click the illustration above to read a booklet with more information about the property