Sainte-anne-de-bellevue funds nest boxes for protected species
Colourful ducks once hunted for feathers
The l'anse-à-l'orme nature park is not the usual place for a press conference, but it was where Lac Saint- Louis MP Francis Scarpallegia joined Sainte-anne-de-bellevue mayor Francis Deroo, town councillor Ryan Young, and two volunteers with a lot of carpentry skills and even more time to give.
Included in the gathering was Kamryn Martinez-hawa, 11, who proudly spoke of a nest box bearing her name. Her mother, town councillor Paola Hawa, says the family often walks in the nature park.
The l'anse-à-l'orme Nature Park was recently protected for conservation purposes through the joint efforts of the City of Sainte-anne-de-bellevue, the Agglomeration of Montreal and Quebec's environment ministry thus allowing for a greater expansion of the area.
The Town hopes to encourage biodiversity through initiatives such as the nest boxes.
The striking male wood duck, with its iridescent green and white crested head, golden flanks and vibrant blue back, is credited with giving the species the reputation of being the most beautiful North American waterfowl. The species was over-hunted until the early part of the 20th century when a complete hunting ban between 1918 and 1941 contributed to a steady increase of the species. The population's growth levelled off in the 1980's.
The wood duck's preferred habitat is wooded wetlands, rivers, and streams, which are not as plentiful in the Montreal region. Unlike other common ducks, the wood duck is a perching duck that normally nests in tree cavities. Wildlife experts say however that the duck will use artificial nest boxes like the ones put up by Sainte-anne-de-bellevue.