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Sauble’s piping plovers need you now!

Sauble’s piping plovers need you now!

Piping Plovers are one of the rarest and most imperiled breeding birds in Ontario. Absent for many years from our Great Lakes shorelines, they reappeared in 2007 and nested at Sauble Beach. Every year since they have returned to this location, gradually reoccupying other Ontario Great Lakes beaches as well.

Despite their comeback, the plovers are now threatened by plans to damage and destroy their habitat at Sauble Beach. Found guilty last year of intentionally destroying piping plover habitat in 2017, the Town of South Bruce Peninsula has applied for two permits under the Endangered Species Act 2007 to engage ...

Piping Plovers are one of the rarest and most imperiled breeding birds in Ontario. Absent for many years from our Great Lakes shorelines, they reappeared in 2007 and nested at Sauble Beach. Every year since they have returned to this location, gradually reoccupying other Ontario Great Lakes beaches as well.

Despite their comeback, the plovers are now threatened by plans to damage and destroy their habitat at Sauble Beach. Found guilty last year of intentionally destroying piping plover habitat in 2017, the Town of South Bruce Peninsula has applied for two permits under the Endangered Species Act 2007 to engage in destructive beach grooming activities again – but this time they’re seeking government approval first.

In a cynical attempt to get around the court’s conviction, the Town is asking for permission to remove large natural materials and mechanically rake the beach, commencing before the July 1st holiday and then again before long weekends and other special events. The raking will flatten hummocks, and remove the natural vegetation, debris and woody materials that the plovers rely on to find food, shelter from storms and cover from predators.

The timing couldn’t be worse as it coincides with the nesting and fledging periods when piping plovers are most vulnerable. The raking may also reduce habitat suitability and availability for years to come. As noted by one expert government biologist, this sort of activity can modify beach and dune dynamics, with long-term impacts on food sources for the plovers, and potentially detrimental effects on the survival and recovery of the species.

Please join Ontario Nature in urging the Government of Ontario NOT to grant the Town permission to damage and destroy critical piping plover habitat at Sauble Beach. For further details, please read our full submission to the Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks, the Honourable Jeff Yurek

The deadline for comment is June 25th.

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Urge the Government of Ontario NOT to grant permission to damage and destroy critical piping plover habitat at Sauble Beach

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