Melissa's Blog

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Mer Bleue Conservation Area

Did you know that one of the largest bogs in Southern Ontario is the Mer Bleue Bog just outside of Ottawa? Did you even know Ontario had bogs?

I read about Mer Bleue quite a while ago, but never had a chance to go before now. Alain and I rode the bike over this weekend,
it's actually about 10 minutes from my apartment! The bog is interesting because as a boreal peat dome Sphagnum bog, it is well outside of its regular ecosystem. Usually this type of ecosystem is found much further north in Canada (in the norther boreal forest).

It i
s part of Ottawa's 20,000 acre greenbelt and has peat deposits as deep as six meters thick!! The bog is currently used for wildlife observation, nature trails, show-shoeing and cross country skiing as well as for research. We picked a great time to visit the bog, it was beautiful and sunny and the leaves were starting to turn. We were treated to fields and fields of red and green ferns.

We did the 1.2 km trail, confined to a boardwalk as the peat is so sensitive that a single footprint in the peat will cause scarring that could take thousands of years to heal. The bog regenerates that slowly.

I hope you enjoy the photographs, although, as usual, they never do justice to the actual experience.

Learn more about the Mer Bleue Bog at the following websites:


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