The Meadoway is a vibrant, 16-kilometre expanse of urban greenspace and meadowlands that will become one of Canada’s largest linear urban parks. Stretching from the Don River Ravine in downtown Toronto to Rouge National Urban Park, the Meadoway will connect four ravines, 15 parks, 34 neighbourhoods, over 200 hectares of meadow habitat that are home to more than 1,000 diverse species of flora and fauna. Meadow habitats have been in decline throughout Ontario due to the expansion of urban areas, the intensification of agriculture, and the suppression of natural disturbances such as fire. The Meadoway will serve as year-round habitat for some species, while providing a migrating corridor for others passing through, as they fuel up for their journey to warmer over-wintering regions.
A visualization of the Meadoway’s eastern entrance. Credit: Toronto and Region Conservation Authority
Earth Rangers has teamed up with the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) as they work to restore these important meadowlands, providing quality habitat for thousands of species of plants and animals. By adopting a red fox, osprey, or eastern milksnake through the Earth Rangers App, you can have a hand in protecting this crucial habitat.
Have you ever seen a red fox? In most parts of Canada, a red fox isn’t too far away. These large, intelligent foxes live in urban and rural environments. They also live in many places around the world, including the USA, Europe, North Africa and Australia. Although red foxes are widely distributed, urban red foxes face unique challenges. They’re often found in meadow habitats, but unfortunately these habitats are decreasing as more homes are being built and urban areas continue to expand.
Osprey are a type of hawk who frequent many different habitats—as long as they’re close to a body of water that’s stocked with fish! These birds are excellent hunters with keen vision, and can detect objects underwater from as far away as 40 meters in the air. They use their sharp, curved talons to plunge feet-first into the water and grab their prey.
Back in the 1960s, ospreys were in big trouble. A widely used pesticide called DDT was causing their eggshells to become so thin they would break, and with fewer osprey young being born, their populations plummeted. Thankfully DDT was banned in 1972 and since then ospreys have made an amazing comeback, but now these beautiful birds are facing threats like habitat loss.
The eastern milksnake is a non-venomous reptile that lives throughout Southern Ontario. Milksnakes are pretty distinctive looking, with smooth, shiny scales that are tan or gray and are patterned with red-brown blotches outlined in black. These snakes are carnivores and eat anything from insects to birds and small mammals. Milksnakes aren’t super rare, but their population size is susceptible to land development, disturbance from humans, and being collected to be sold as pets, among other things. That’s why they need our help!
Learn how you can adopt these species and many others by downloading the Earth Rangers App today!
This project is generously supported by:
In partnership with: