Dec. 14, 2009
SAINT JOHN (CNB) - The provincial government has donated a 27-hectare property in the Ragged Point/Boars Head area on the shore of the lower St. John River to the Nature Trust of New Brunswick. Supply and Services Minister Ed Doherty made the announcement today, joined by Saint John East MLA Roly McIntyre.
"Our government is very pleased to make this land available to be enjoyed by all New Brunswickers," said Doherty. "Our partnership with the Nature Trust will ensure that this site's unique ecology is protected and treasured well into the future."
For several years residents of the area have campaigned for protection of the property, and its designation brings to six the number of nature preserves in the Greater Saint John area.
"The Nature Trust is delighted to secure this piece of land in such a rapidly growing area for the benefit of the residents of New Brunswick," said Ken Hirtle, past president of the Nature Trust.
The property includes a stretch of undeveloped St. John River shoreline that features rocky cliffs and a small sandy beach. The property is considered ecologically sensitive, because it is home to the Anticosti aster, a plant species considered at-risk under provincial legislation, and threatened under the federal Species at Risk Act.
The Nature Trust will conserve, manage and sign the land as a nature preserve, and work toward establishing new partnerships with local schools, clubs and residents.
The event also highlighted the donation of $75,000 by local resident John Irving. The donation will finance the stewardship of the reserve and ensure its long-term management and protection.
"We are very fortunate to have a terrific system of parks and trails here in Saint John," said Irving. "Many people take advantage of these facilities because they are so accessible. As a Millidgeville resident, I'm honoured to have the opportunity to play a part in the creation and protection of one such nature preserve in Millidgeville."
It is anticipated that the preserve can be equipped with rugged walking trails for residents, and that local youths can be engaged in the conservation and stewardship of the site.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Chrystiane Mallaley, communications, Department of Supply and Services, 506-457-7903; Renata Woodward, Nature Trust of New Brunswick, 506-457-2398.