The Natural Area
A project of the Stanley Park Optimist Club
Updated Sunday January 14, 2018 by Stanley Park.
In co-operation with The City of Kitchener, The Optimist Club of Stanley Park undertook a major project to help enhance the Walter Bean Trail along the Grand River by restoring the environment, plants and animals that existed along the Grand River over 200 years ago. The results can be seen (and enjoyed) on the north side of Victoria St. N., (Hwy #7), on the west bank of the Grand River.
The site includes several ponds which were designed as fish breeding areas to help improve the Grand River fishery. Groundwater and runoff feed the ponds, which act as natural water filters. A large culvert connects the main pond to the Grand River, allowing fish to move in and out of the pond system. Fish species found in the ponds include common and striped shiners, pumpkinseed, rock bass, green sunfish, brook stickleback, largemouth bass, black crappie and bluegill. Other wildlife that have been observed here are frogs, toads, crayfish, turtles, great blue herons, raccoons and muskrats.
Optimist Club of Stanley Park members celebrated the official "opening" of the Natural Area and the unveiling of the commemorative sign with Carl Zehr, City of Kitchener Mayor.
With your help, these and other native plant and animal species will thrive again. There are parking facilities, walking trails throughout the area and a canoe launching "ramp" into the river. (Note: no washrooms nor picnic tables.)
Update for 2018 - The Club is working with government officals and the Grand River Conservation Authority (as a partner) on further upgrades along the Grand River, possibly at the Ottawa St./Otterbein access point. Hopefully details can be finalized soon so this too can become a reality!
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