Partnership Aims to Restore Bald Eagle to Ontario

Archived Release

Partnership Aims to Restore Bald Eagle to Ontario

Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry

Project Part of Agreement To Clean Up and Protect Great Lakes Waters and Habitats TORONTO, Dec. 30 - The Ontario government is working with a range of partners to restore populations of bald eagles along the shores of Lake Ontario as part of a Canada-Ontario commitment to clean up Great Lakes ecosystems, Natural Resources Minister David Ramsay said today. "The bald eagle is one of the important indicator species that we can use to track our progress in cleaning up and rehabilitating Lake Ontario and its tributaries," said Ramsay. "This magnificent bird was once common to Ontario. Our goal is to provide a healthy natural environment that can once again support self-sustaining populations of this endangered species along Lake Ontario's shores." The Ministry of Natural Resources is working with the Canadian Wildlife Service, Bird Studies Canada, Parks Canada, and New York State environmental agencies to identify historical and current nesting and wintering sites for the bald eagle, and evaluate the size and reproductive success of existing bald eagle populations. The ministry is contributing $40,000 to the bald eagle project through the Canada-Ontario Agreement (COA) Respecting the Great Lakes Basin Ecosystem. Disponible en fran├žais www.mnr.gov.on.ca www.ene.gov.on.ca Backgrounder ------------------------------------------------------------------------- December 30, 2004 ONTARIO GOVERNMENT TAKING ACTION TO PROTECT AND RESTORE GREAT LAKES THROUGH CANADA-ONTARIO AGREEMENT The Ontario Government and Canada-Ontario Agreement Through the Canada-Ontario Agreement (COA) Respecting the Great Lakes Basin Ecosystem, Ontario is investing $50 million over five years to conserve and restore the Great Lakes and protect the province's unique coastal environment. This is one of the largest of the Ontario government's many programs and actions to help clean up the Great Lakes for future generations. Eight federal agencies and three provincial ministries are part of the agreement. The Ministry of Natural Resources and COA The ministry will support efforts to protect and restore healthy ecosystems within the Great Lakes and adjoining watersheds in a number of ways, including: - Protecting biodiversity by protecting species at risk, increasing public awareness of invasive species, conserving wetlands and supporting efforts to create a protected areas network; - Restoring fish and wildlife uses by protecting habitat, restoring native fish populations, and supporting watershed planning; and - Enhancing knowledge about fish and wildlife populations, impacts of invasive species, aquatic food webs, watershed science, and indicators of ecosystem health. The ministry will receive approximately $25 million in COA funding over four years: $6.4 million in 2003-04 $7.7 million in 2004-05 $8.32 million in 2005-06, and $2.15 million in 2006-07 Background Under this agreement, the Ontario and Canadian governments have set environmental priorities and are undertaking specific goals and actions to meet the shared vision of a healthy, prosperous and sustainable Great Lakes Basin ecosystem for present and future generations. COA contributes to Canada's obligations under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement signed by Canada and the United States in 1972. The goal is to restore the biological, physical and chemical integrity of the Great Lakes over the long term. Provincially, COA is led by the Ministry of the Environment; the Ministry of Natural Resources is a key partner in implementing many aspects of the agreement. Contact: Barbara Mabee Ministry of Natural Resources (705) 755-1835 www.mnr.gov.on.caFor further information: Contacts: Media Calls Only: Ginette Albert, Minister's Office, (416) 314-2212; Steve Payne, Ministry of Natural Resources, (416) 314-2103