Tadenac Conservation Initiative

Posted on April 24, 2019

Tadenac Conservation Initiative: a 5,400-acre sanctuary for nature

We are thrilled to announce the Tadenac Conservation Initiative, a 5,400-acre protected area of pristine wilderness south of Twelve Mile Bay. Containing some of the highest biodiversity in the Georgian Bay region, this area provides an important refuge for numerous species and a critical link in coastal habitat corridors.

Minister Carolyn Bennett joined us in Toronto today to announce the federal government’s contribution of $967,000 towards this project. This funding is part of the “Quickstart” prelude to Canada’s Nature Fund, a $500 million initiative to fulfill Canada’s commitment to protect 17% of our land and inland waters by 2020. We are honoured to have been selected during this competitive initial round of funding, a choice which speaks to the value of the habitats in question and to the national significance of the Georgian Bay region.

                                                                        GBLT staff and board members were joined by Minister Carolyn Bennett,
and representatives of Environment & Climate Change Canada
and the Nature Conservancy of Canada to announce the project


The Tadenac Conservation Initiative protects one of Georgian Bay’s largest undisturbed natural areas, providing terrestrial and aquatic habitat for at least 32 species at risk including the Blanding’s Turtle, Algonquin Wolf, and Bald Eagle, and 15 provincially rare plant species. It also includes two Provincially Significant Wetlands which provide nesting habitat for waterfowl and critical fish spawning and nursery areas used by endangered Lake Sturgeon.

“This project enshrines the largest private landholding on the eastern Georgian Bay coast as a permanent sanctuary for nature,” said Bill Lougheed, Executive Director of the GBLT. “It is an incredible step forward for conservation on Georgian Bay.”

The protected area also plays an essential role in establishing a 40 km protected habitat corridor along the Georgian Bay coast. Such intact corridors are of utmost importance for the survival of large mammals, reptiles and migratory birds, and allow for greater ecological resiliency to climate change.


The land and lakebed included in the Tadenac Conservation Initiative is protected by Conservation Easement and remains privately owned, with regular ecological monitoring to be undertaken by the Georgian Bay Land Trust. The initiative’s primary purpose is to provide a sanctuary for biodiversity that will also provide opportunities for conservation-focused research. To this end, the landowners have established a foundation with a $1 million endowment to support ongoing scientific research in this remarkable area – an incredible legacy for conservation knowledge.

The Georgian Bay Land Trust is extremely grateful to Environment and Climate Change Canada, without whose support this project would not have been possible, and everyone involved in making this conservation vision a success. Additional funding was provided by the Echo Foundation and the McLean Foundation, and the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s extensive past field work provided an indispensable foundation for the project.

“The work of the Georgian Bay Land Trust and its partners is a great example of the leadership and collaboration needed to protect more of Canada’s nature. By working together, we can double the amount of nature we’re protecting from coast to coast to coast,” said Catherine McKenna, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change. We are so honoured to be a part of this work, and to have such incredible partners with whom to do it.


Watch a video of the announcement here: