maplecross union corner natural area

Courtesy INT

Map provides approximate location.

MapleCross Union Corner Natural Area

Union Corner, PE

Island Nature Trust – 2023

28 hectares

Property Description

The MapleCross-Union Corner Natural Area contains 41 hectares of diverse habitat located in the Évangéline region of Prince Edward Island. This forested property is adjacent to the southern coast of the Island along the Northumberland Strait. The Évangéline region has a rich history of the Acadian people and acts as the cultural centre for Francophones on PEI. The history of the area goes further back to the Mi’kmaq people who inhabited the Island long before European settlement. This region has a known site traditionally called “Mntuapskuk,” meaning “Devil’s Rock.” According to historical knowledge keepers, this area was used as a camping ground by the Mi’kmaq. Additionally, this property is near the location of a former reserve (the “Lot 15 Reserve”) that was purchased for the use of the Mi’kmaq by the government of PEI in 1852, and, subsequently, sold by the government in 1866.

The MapleCross-Union Corner Natural Area shares a border with INT’s 40-hectare Sapper Aubin J Gallant Natural Area to the west of the property. These protected areas are significant as the region has few conserved lands. The natural area contains several bogs and two small creeks that flow into the Northumberland Strait. Notable species recorded on the parcel include white pine and white ash. The rarity of these species speak to the value of protecting this area from future disturbances over time. The majority of the property contains young forests comprised of mixedwood forest stands dominated by poplar, white birch, red maple, balsam fir, white spruce and alder.

The history of disturbance on the parcel is similar to most forests on PEI, however, due to the wet surface, agriculture was not prominent on the landscape. Instead, the property experienced two distinct rounds of forest harvesting in the past century. The recent forestry work included forestry roads that bisect portions of the property. These forestry disturbances explain the dominating young growth and pioneer species that define the property. The Island Nature Trust will help monitor and steward this parcel as it regenerates from the recent forestry disturbance. This area, in combination with the neighbouring protected area, will serve as a conservation remnant for species to find food and shelter in an area that lacks suitable food sources and habitat.

Thanks to the generous donation from the MapleCross Fund, private donors, and our federal funding partners, the 41-hectare MapleCross–Union Corner Natural Area is now protected forever under the PEI Natural Areas Protection Act.

Content and property pictures courtesy of Island Nature Trust.

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