Statement of Conservation Interest

Shebandowan/Graham Area, Thunder Bay District
February, 2000

The original text for this Statement of Conservation Interest was prepared by Jill Entwistle, District Planner and Peter Wiltsey, Area Forester, Thunder Bay District

Additional copies of this Statement are available by contacting the Ministry of Natural Resources, Thunder Bay District, Suite B001, 435 James Street South, Thunder Bay, Ontario, P7E 6S8.

Approval statement

I am pleased to approve this Statement of Conservation Interest for the Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve.

This Statement of Conservation Interest provides guidance for the management of the Conservation Reserve and the basis for the ongoing monitoring activities. Should significant facility development or resource management be considered, or complex issues arise requiring additional studies, a more detailed Conservation Reserve Management Plan will be prepared with full public consultation.

The public was widely consulted during the original regulation process for this site, and further consultation is not required at this time.

The Greenwood Lake Advisory Committee has been active in the planning and management of this area since 1992. I support their continued input and welcome their advice to the MNR.

The Conservation Reserve will continue to be managed by the Shebandowan/Graham Area, Thunder Bay District, Ministry of Natural Resources.

Signed by:
Charlie Lauer
Regional Director
Northwest Region

Date: January 25, 2000

1.0 Background information

The purpose of this document is to identify the natural heritage values of the Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve, as well as identifying the type and extent of current recreational use on-site. A set of management guidelines defines the activities that will be permitted and not permitted, along with overall management direction for the area. For more information on the basis for this Statement of Conservation Interest, please refer to the Conservation Reserves Policy and Procedure PL3.03.05.

The Greenwood Lake Advisory Committee, formally established in 1992, has provided past guidance for the site which is consistent with the direction outlined in this Statement of Conservation Interest. The Committee will continue to be actively involved in the management of the Conservation Reserve, recommending research priorities, encouraging the scientific and educational value of the area and promoting non-destructive recreational activities in the area.

NameGreenwood Lake Conservation Reserve
Site Region / Site District4W – 1
OMNR Administrative Region / District / AreaNorthwest Region - Thunder Bay District Shebandowan/Graham Area
Total Area (ha)811
Regulation DateJanuary 7th, 1995
First NationsN/A
Lat./Long.48º23’ N 90º45’ W
FRI Stands310, 311, 312, 314, 315, 316 and others
General Location DescriptionLocated approximately 90 km west of the city of Thunder Bay, south of Greenwood Lake. Quetico Provincial Park is 16 km west of the area.
AccessThe reserve can be reached via the Boreal Road system. From Highway 11 turn south onto Highway 802 west of Kashabowie and follow signs on gravel roads for 42 km.

1.1 Targets

This section provides a summary of the earth and life science system and values and cultural resources represented; and recreational opportunities available or possible.

Life Science RepresentationThe site represents a complex flora understory on nutrient rich soils, with very large old growth white pine in relatively good health.
Earth Science RepresentationAblation tills over bedrock. No special value.
Cultural Resource RepresentationNo documented cultural heritage values identified.
Recreational OpportunitiesOpportunities exist for recreational hiking, nature hikes, bird watching and wildlife viewing. A system of trails has been constructed to provide walking access through much of the reserve. Sport hunting is permitted in the reserve.

1.2 Survey information

This section provides an overview of the inventories completed, their level of detail and any further inventories that are needed.

Survey LevelReconnaissanceDetailedRequirement
Life ScienceNoNoYes – identified as a requirement in the Keep It Wild (KIW) site report
Earth ScienceNoNoIf funding/expertise becomes available – not critical
Other1994 field survey checklistNorthwest Region Old Growth ReportNo

2.0 Values to be protected

This section provides a description of the key natural heritage values on the site, and their condition relative to past resource use and management activities and their sensitivity to future land use and management activities.

2.1 Values identified on the site

Life ScienceThe site contains features that are representative of old growth white pine forests. The site represents this forest ecotype in Site District 4W-1.
Earth ScienceAblation tills over bedrock…no special value.
CulturalNone identified
AboriginalNone identified
TourismThe unique nature of the site and trails developed within the Conservation Reserve are conducive to eco-tourism activities.
Recreational FishingRecreational fishery in adjacent waters of Greenwood Lake based on pike and whitefish.
Recreational HuntingSite has been used by local residents for moose and small game hunting.
MiningLow mineral potential; no significant concerns (MNDM, Thunder Bay); site has been withdrawn from staking.
AggregateNo past or existing operations, little potential.
Forest HarvestHigh value timber for white pine; unallocated within FMP area; removed from SFL.
TrappingOne licensed trapline in the site that is active.
Bear Management AreaPart of an active Bear Management Area
Commercial FishNone

2.2 Values to be protected

The intent of this SCI is to protect values by establishing management guidelines for existing and potential uses in this area, given the level of past disturbance and the nature of the existing features.

Forest Values: the forest in the entire area is to be protected (including the old growth component) from any alteration. The forest type will naturally maintain itself for at least another 50-100 years. It may be a source for genetic material for northern white pine genotypes.

Recreational Values: The reserve offers hiking, snowshoeing, nature appreciation and sport hunting opportunities. Sport fishing opportunities are available in the adjacent lake.

Tourism Values: This unique and highly attractive area has the potential for eco-tourism opportunities. It is accessible by road and has developed trails for hiking.

3.0 Management guidelines

3.1 Land tenure

Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve will remain Crown land. No dispositions (including Land Use Permits or Licenses of Occupation) will be issued for the site.

3.2 Existing and proposed development

A series of hiking trails have been developed in the area, designed to have minimal impact on the natural features of the reserve. Trail markers are in place. An entry kiosk and interpretive panels have been installed to provide general information on the Reserve and to house trail guides. No other structural development will be allowed in the area, including campsites or other facilities that would disturb the forest. The trail network is designed to discourage access by any means other than on foot.

3.3 Recreational activities

Most recreational activities that have traditionally been enjoyed in this area can continue provided they pose no threat to the natural ecosystems and features protected by the Conservation Reserve. These permitted uses include wildlife viewing, hunting, walking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Sport fishing and boating will continue to be permitted in adjacent waters.

3.4 Commercial activities

The Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve is part of the Dog-River Matawin Forest Sustainable Forest License and will be permanently removed from the Forest Management Plan allocations. An examination of the possible impact of activities on adjacent lands should be evaluated in the FMP.

The Conservation Reserve has been withdrawn from all mineral exploration and extraction activities by the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines (MNDM), at MNR’s request.

The Greenwood Lake property contains part of a registered trapline, which is presently active and which will be permitted to continue.

The area is part of a Bear Management Area. Hunting will continue as a permitted use in this Conservation Reserve.

No other commercial activities exist in the area. No new activities, such as mining, aggregate or peat extraction, commercial logging, hydroelectric power development, utility corridors, highways or roads, will be permitted.

3.5 Aboriginal interests

There is no known past or current Aboriginal interest in the Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve. Nothing in this Statement of Conservation Interest affects in any way existing or future aboriginal or treaty rights.

3.6 Natural Resources Stewardship

3.6.1 Vegetation management

The area will naturally evolve and should be stable for some 50-100 years. As this Conservation Reserve is currently surrounded by high timber values within the Dog-River Matawin Forest Sustainable Forest License, it will remain as part of the MNR’s intensive fire management zone. All fire occurrences are considered a high priority for action and will be aggressively suppressed.

There is a concern that this strategy may be in conflict with the ecosystem management objective for old growth values (biodiversity, genetic heritage) where low intensity wildfire would contribute to ecological maintenance and renewal within this Conservation Reserve. However the small size of the site and the extremely high adjacent values rule out the use of a natural fire regime.

3.6.2 Fish and Wildlife Management

Nothing is required other than existing Wildlife Management Unit and sport fishing regulation and management activities.

3.6.3 Landforms

No management activity is required except protection.

3.7 Cultural Resources Stewardship

No management activity is required at this time based on existing information.

3.8 Client services

Hiking trails have been constructed to make the reserve accessible for research, education and eco-tourism purposes. The Greenwood Lake Advisory Committee has guided the development of the trails, with the actual work done by volunteers. The Advisory committee has prepared and produced information leaflets, outlining the natural features and recommended activities within the CR, consistent with this Statement of Conservation Interest.

3.9 Research

Non-destructive research related to the study of old growth white pine communities will be encouraged in this conservation reserve.

3.10 Marketing

No management activity is required at this time. The Greenwood Lake Advisory Committee distributes information leaflets about the reserve and signs have been installed to direct visitors from Highway 11 into the Reserve site.

4.0 Implementation

Implementation of these management guidelines is the responsibility of the Shebandowan/ Graham Area, Thunder Bay District. The Greenwood Lake Advisory Committee also has an active role in implementing the guidelines and providing recommendations to MNR on present and future management of the Reserve. Any affected clients will be immediately informed of proposed changes to this Statement of Conservation Interest.

5.0 Review and revisions

The Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve Statement of Conservation Interest will be reviewed on an ongoing basis.

If changes in management direction are needed at any time, the significance of the changes will be evaluated. The need for public notice or more formal consultation will be assessed. Any major amendments will require full public consultation and the approval of the Regional Director. This Statement of Conservation Interest complies with all requirements of the Environmental Assessment Act and the Environmental Bill of Rights.

5.1 Public consultation

5.1.1 Results of past consultation

Under the previous Keep It Wild initiative, pre-consultation was initiated with the timber company and the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines in June, 1994. No concerns were expressed at that time. There were no Aboriginal interests or uses in the area. Newspaper advertisements and a district information package were distributed to known stakeholders and affected people in November, 1994 along with an invitation to participate placed in the regional and local papers. Two letters were received in support of the proposal. A stakeholder meeting was held with the Greenwood Lake Advisory Committee in December, 1994. The committee supported the proposal but recommended that a larger area be included. It was determined that the expanded area being proposed did not meet the criteria and could be managed by other means. As a result, it was not added to the reserve.

5.1.2 Present and future consultation

Due to this Statement’s focus on maintenance of the status quo (i.e. absence of proposals for significant resource management or development activities), further widespread consultation is not deemed necessary at this time.

6.0 References

Ministry of Natural Resources. Conservation Reserves Policy and Procedure (PL 3.03.05). 1997

Ministry of Natural Resources. Keep It Wild Report, 1995.

Greenwood Lake Advisory Committee Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve Old-Growth White Pine, brochure 1997

Figure 1: Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve Regional Setting

This map provides detailed information about References.

Enlarge Figure 1: Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve Regional Setting

Figure 2: Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve Boundary

This map provides detailed information about Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve Boundary.

Enlarge Figure 2: Greenwood Lake Conservation Reserve Boundary