TFN was one of the first nature clubs in Ontario to secure land as nature reserves for future generations to enjoy. Thanks to substantial bequests generously entrusted to us over the years, TFN currently owns and maintains 170+ hectares of private nature reserves & environmentally sensitive wetlands, protecting vital habitats to many provincially-endangered and at-risk species. TFN maintains a trust fund for the maintenance of our nature reserves and welcomes donations to the fund.
Jim Baillie Nature Reserve (35 hectares)
Our first reserve, the JBNR was purchased in two stages, 1970 and 1973. Jim Baillie was president of the club, a popular leader of bird walks and Assistant Curator of Ornithology at the Royal Ontario Museum. The JBNR is in the northwest corner of a wetland complex designated as the “Uxbridge Creek Environmentally Significant Area”. It is considered a high quality undisturbed swamp forest with a diverse flora and many regionally rare species, including Ontario’s endangered butternut, the subject of a dedicated protection project started by TFN in 2019.
TFN maintains a network of trails at Jim Baillie for the enjoyment of our Members. Further information including directions, map and a detailed species list by purchasing our booklet, A Guide to the Toronto Field Naturalists’ Nature Reserves, available from the TFN office.
TFN Members are also invited to help care for this wonderful bit of wilderness by joining the Jim Baillie Stewardship Team. Further information can be found on our Volunteer Opportunities for Members page.
Emily Hamilton Nature Reserve (30 hectares)
This property was purchased in 1987. Emily Hamilton was a long serving club director, an active volunteer who led many botany outings and the chief compiler of the plant lists for our reserves. This property consists of a wet meadow and cedar swamp by Uxbridge Creek and its tributaries. There are no trails.
Charles Fell Nature Reserve (81 hectares)
This property was purchased in 1997 through generous donations by the Charles Fell Foundation. The reserve is situated in a wide valley surrounding the Layton River. Three-quarters of the reserve is open wetland with Speckled Alder and Dwarf Birch. One-quarter is forested wetland with poplar, cedar and tamarack. Two small tributaries enter the river on the property, one from the east, one from the west. The reserve is located in Brock Township approximately 15 kilometers east of the Uxbridge Creek. The whole property consists of impassable wetland – there are no trails.
Helen and Aarne Juhola Reserve (30 hectares)
The newest wetland was acquired in 2002 and named in honour of two of our most active members who were directors for many years, Aarne as Treasurer, Helen as President and also editor of the newsletter and co-author of many publications. There are no trails.