harvesters before sml
harvesters after sml
The Métis Nation of Ontario Georgian Bay Métis Council worked on a stream reclamation project at Le Villageois de
Lafontaine and planted a buffer zone between the stream
and the adjoining farmland to prevent runoff. Above is a
before (left) and after photo of the work. Click here to view
larger versions of the before and after images.

Submitted by MNO Georgian Bay Métis Council Chair Larry Ferris

For more than eight years, the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) Georgian Bay Métis Council (GBMC) has been working hard to complete reforestation and habitat remediation in several areas. The work has included tree planting and remediating stream and fish habitats.

MNO GBMC played an important part as participants, planners and partners in rebuilding these areas. Through the efforts of the community council, they have been transformed and evidence of wildlife is everywhere. There are birds nesting in the trees, turkey and deer tracks, and the protected streams now run cold and clear.

Neighbouring Le Villageoisde Lafontaine, the council worked on a stream reclamation project. Volunteers planted trees along the bank to help prevent erosion and to stabilize the soil. They also created a buffer zone between the stream and the adjoining farmland to protect it from runoff. The stream is part of the Lafontaine creek system, which is important for trout spawning.

Projects were also completed by the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA) in Midland, where a corridor was created between two large forests for animals to easily travel, and at the Breen Tract, where rows of cedar and pine trees were planted over two years.

The MNO GBMC’s oldest project was completed at Simcoe County’s Millennium Tract, near Barrie. MNO citizens, MNO GBMC youth and harvesters helped different organizations plant about 10,000 trees in that area. The council and Georgian Bay Traditional Territory Consultation Committee protected the area from a proposed development, saving a large tract of land that contained traditional medicine trees, such as butternut and walnut. Those trees were also chosen for planting because the council wanted trees that Métis ancestors would have valued, recognized and used. Although some of the white oak trees are struggling from being eaten by deer, they still look healthy.

The MNO GBMC is proud to have worked on these projects and know that the good was achieved not only for Métis people, but all people.

Posted: June 25, 2018