The Nature Conservancy of Canada protects the life cycle of wood turtles

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) advertises protection for two natural habitats located in Mauricie that are essential to the wood turtle, an endangered species.

These habitats include forest-lined wetlands and riverine areas that provide wood turtles with much-needed habitats for feeding and mating. In addition, there is an important nesting site for the survival of this species in Canada there.

Both sites have an area of ​​115 hectares, and are part of an ecological corridor that connects them to the surrounding wood turtle habitats, including La Morrissey National Park and other NCC-protected lands. This contact allows wood turtles and other animals to move around to meet their needs.

Protecting woodland turtle populations is essential to maintaining an overall ecosystem health. These reptiles feed on dead plants, insects, and animals, which helps keep wetlands healthy. With a lifespan of over 50 and a calm temperament, the Wood Turtle takes time to find the perfect place to lay their eggs, and can sometimes explore a site for several days before making a decision.

Since very few individuals reach adulthood, a slight increase in their mortality due to human activity, such as road collisions with turtles, can cause the population to decline. This is why conservation efforts in Maurice are essential to restore this species classified as Vulnerable in Quebec and Threatened in Canada.

This project demonstrates how NCC is accelerating conservation in Canada. In the past two years alone, NCC’s work has affected the protection of more than 1 million hectares (nearly twice the size of Prince Edward Island), coast-to-coast and coast-to-coast. In the coming years, the organization will multiply its impact by mobilizing Canadians and delivering lasting and far-reaching results in conservation.

In the face of rapid biodiversity decline and climate change, nature is our ally. None of these crises can be resolved without preserving nature. Because when nature thrives, we all benefit.

This project is a feat of collaboration between partners, which include private companies, local organizations and governments. It proves that by working together, we can protect endangered species that are vital to our ecosystems, such as wood turtles. We are so grateful to our partners for their dedication that we could not have done without them.. Gabrielle Cauchon Déry, Project Manager for the Mauricie District, commented on the Nature Conservancy of Canada.

Protecting Quebec’s wetlands and water bodies is essential to many species of plants and animals. These important ecosystems provide us with a range of ecological services and are refuges for many species, some of which are endangered. I am proud to note that the amount awarded to NCC as part of the Natural Environments Partnership Project has made it possible to obtain areas of wood turtle interest that contribute to the protection of an ecological corridor. These protected areas will help this species survive in a precarious situation.”, states Benoit Charette, Minister for the Environment and the fight against climate change, Minister in charge of the fight against racism and Minister in charge of the Laval region.

We have pledged to be a major player in protecting biodiversity. We are therefore very pleased to be partners in the protection of woodland turtles by providing protection by true and lasting easement of property for the benefit of this threatened and endangered species. We are also very proud to be involved in setting up species monitoring and conservation facilities on this property that is protected by the Nature Conservancy in Canada. We sincerely hope that this project will be the beginning of a series of cooperation between partners for the benefit of biodiversity and natural environments.Julie Heber, Director of the Environment Department, Eurovia Québec CSP added.

Recognizing the importance of the conservation ecological connection, we are pleased to share our experience with partners such as the Nature Conservancy in Canada to improve the connection between protected areas such as La Mauricie National Park and the surrounding landscape. Together, we protect our natural environment in Quebec and across the country and build a healthier, more resilient future. Programs such as the Nature Trust of Canada’s Natural Heritage Preservation Program and the Habitat Care Program are helping us move toward conserving a quarter of Canada’s land and a quarter of the oceans. 2025.Remarks by The Honorable Stephen Gilbolt, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister in charge of Parks Canada.

After nearly 25 years since the first work of my Ministry to try to better know and protect this group of turtles, I am very proud of the outcome of this project which is the fruit of a wonderful collaboration between all parties. This is a huge step towards the sustainability of the species.Pierre Dufour, Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks, Minister Responsible for the Abetepe-Tmiscaming Region and the Nord-de-Quebec Region and Member of Parliament for Abetepe-East concludes.

Highlights

Parks Canada specialists in La Morrissey National Park will monitor woodland turtles on properties newly protected by the NCC.

Ecological corridors are becoming more important than ever as animals migrate north at a rate of 45 kilometers per decade due to climate change.

We can all help reduce collisions with turtles on the road. To learn more about turtle collisions and road safety, visit carapace.ca.

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