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Endangered snakes getting free ride to Canatara Park

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Journal Staff

A population of endangered snakes in Point Edward will be relocated this year to Canatara Park.

The Butler’s garter snakes will be captured by wildlife technicians at 1600 Venetian Blvd. and moved to enhanced habitat at the Sarnia park’s south end.

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Sarnia city council have each approved the plan, which will see 1.4 hectares of Canatara restored from grass to meadow habitat ideal for the snakes.

The owner of 1600 Venetian Blvd., who plans to build 22 townhomes and six semi-detached homes on the five acres, is covering the cost, the city said.

The newly created habitat will remain open for walkers and joggers and provide educational opportunities for visitors interested in learning more about the snakes, a consultant’s report noted.

Natural Resources will monitor the snakes for two years after the move to ensure they have settled in.

The Butler’s garter snake is a small, non-venomous snake that is found only in the lower Great Lakes region. It’s “endangered” status means it lives in the wild in Ontario but is facing imminent extinction or extirpation.

In 2012, with council’s approval, Cantaqleigh coordinated the relocation of Butler’s garter snakes from Point Edward’s Spit Lands to Canatara.

 

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