Cartwright Nature Sanctuary


Located in the Pleasant View area of Dundas, this 46 acre parcel forms a key part of one of the primary ecological corridors linking the Niagara Escarpment and Cootes Paradise marsh. The solitude and unspoiled nature found just minutes from the city consists of a central plateau area on the lower slopes of the Niagara Escarpment almost entirely surrounded by stream valleys. The northern part of the sanctuary features a well established forest community, the valleys host a wide diversity of communities from thickets to meadow marshes and forested slopes. The sanctuary is an important wildlife corridor providing diverse habitat for many species including White-tailed Deer, Coyote and Wild Turkey. A wildflower in the Gentian family listed as an Endangered Species is located in the sanctuary; one of less than a dozen known occurrences in Canada. Pignut Hickory and other rare and uncommon species are also present. The area is considered part of the Borer’s Falls Rock Chapel Environmentally Sensitive Area and falls within the Cootes to Escarpment EcoPark System.


Ecology and Highlights

The northern part of the sanctuary features a well established forest community dominated by Red Oak, Shagbark and Sweet Pignut Hickories. Gray Dogwood thickets and groves of young Black Walnut and Red Ash dominate former pasture lands in the central area. The sanctuary is an important groundwater discharge area, feeding streams such as Hickory Brook that flow into Cootes Paradise. Stewardship activities have included ecological inventories, breeding bird surveys and invasive species control. The isolated central plateau is surrounded by valleys on all sides providing a spectacular view. The Bruce W. Duncan Memorial Trail travels through the forest and thickets and features a major bridge, 90 metres of boardwalk and two benches.

Date of Acquisition: 2004

Aquired and managed with Conservation Halton