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Visiting a Conservation Area – Important Reminders & Green Tips

Island Lake Conservation Area - Picnics

Some of the following reminders are the law, while others are just plain common sense and courtesy. Everyone’s cooperation and respect for these reminders will help preserve the natural beauty of our Conservation Areas.

General

  • Owners must keep their pets on a leash at all times and “stoop and scoop”.
  • Possession and/or consumption of alcohol is not permitted.
  • Please do not damage or remove plants, picnic tables or other area property.
  • Camping is not permitted in any of our conservation areas.
  • Campfires are not permitted in any of our conservation areas.
  • When in doubt concerning an activity, please ask our staff.
  • Alcoholic beverages and drugs, including cannabis, are not allowed in any of our conservation areas.
  • Smoking and Vaping, not including cannabis or other drugs, is not allowed within 9 metres of buildings. We strongly encourage not smoking in our parks to limit the chances of fire. Help us keep the environment clean and respect fellow visitors.

Active Transportation

  • Visitors entering the conservation area by use of active transportation (walking, biking, jogging, running, cycling, in-line skating, skateboarding, non-mechanized wheel chairing, skiing and snowshoeing) will have admission fees waived.

Please leave the Conservation Area as you find it.

  • Credit Valley Conservation owns and/or manages over 50 properties for the protection and appreciation of important natural resources. Many of these Conservation Areas are for the public to experience and enjoy and for future generations to be able to do the same. Some global trends, such as climate change, are putting these natural resources at risk but unfortunately, some visitor trends can do the same. In our Conservation Areas it is illegal to pick or remove vegetation of any kind, including live or dead branches, plants, soil or other natural items. If you see anyone picking plants or removing any resources from our Conservation Areas, please contact us at 905-670-1615. Thank you for your cooperation.

Trail Etiquette

  • Know which uses are permitted before participating.
  • Give the right of way to smaller and slower users.
  • Stay right when approaching oncoming users.
  • Stay on the trail surface.
  • Keep pets leashed, and clean up after them.
  • Obey signs.
  • Do not climb fences or take shortcuts.
  • Respect the privacy of landowners bordering the trails.
  • Leave wildlife and plants for others to enjoy.

Anglers

  • Fishing is not permitted at Rattray Marsh or at any sections of the Credit River marked as a “Fish Sanctuary”.
  • A valid Ontario fishing licence is required.
  • Ontario Fishing Regulations apply.
  • Fishing is permitted only when the Conservation Area is open.
  • Please practice catch and release of bass.
  • Conservation limits may come into effect for all anglers. Please check with staff.
  • There is a live bait ban in effect.

GREEN TIPS for your Park Visit:

Reduce your waste

  • Use reusable, compostable, biodegradable or recyclable containers. Hot/cold drink bottles are for sales at Terra Cotta and Island Lake Conservation Areas.
  • Pack plenty of local, in-season fruits and vegetables and organic meat.
  • Remember, fresh fruit “wraps” itself – no additional packaging needed.
  • Choose washable, reusable cloth napkins and tablecloths.
  • Skip the individually packaged drinks and opt for jugs or coolers to share.
  • Use a canvas bag or other reusable totes for your food and picnic supplies.
  • Throw any unwanted items in the proper bins and take leftovers home to enjoy later.

Appreciate Mother Nature

  • Protect habitat. Our parks are home to nesting birds, native plants, and other species that are easily trampled. Make sure your children and pets stay on trails and in open spaces so everyone enjoys themselves.
  • Observe and Learn. Take field guides, binoculars, even a nature journal to learn about wildlife and habitat, or start a fun “life list” of species you see.
  • Use natural bug repellant and sunscreen. They’re less toxic for your family and safer for nature.
  • Carpool. You’ll reduce emissions and save on park admission!

Plan ahead

When picnicking at Island Lake Conservation Area:

  • Onsite recycling includes plastic and glass bottles and aluminum cans.
  • Don’t contaminate recycling bins. All contaminated recycling ends up in the landfill.
  • Large cardboard may be broken down and left stacked beside recycling bins.
  • All types of coffee cups and lids, as well as Styrofoam containers are NOT recyclable and belong in the garbage can. Use reusable container instead.
  • Reduce your noise footprint, be courteous to those picnicking around you and limit your use of amplified sound. Restrictions apply.
  • Picnics with a reservation will also have access to compost bins. Signage on what is acceptable will be onsite.

When picnicking at Terra Cotta Conservation Area:

  • Onsite recycling includes plastic and glass bottles and aluminum cans.
  • Don’t contaminate recycling bins. All contaminated recycling ends up in the landfill.
  • All types of coffee cups and lids, as well as Styrofoam containers are NOT recyclable and belong in the garbage can. Use reusable container instead.
  • Reduce your noise footprint, be courteous to those picnicking around you and limit your use of amplified sound. Restrictions apply.

Video Surveillance

Our Photographic and Video Monitoring and Surveillance Policy can be viewed at this link.