Some say Point Pelee is "FOR THE BIRDS" -- well birds certainly have made the Point world famous. Each spring and fall, thousands of birds ( 370 species ) pass through this area. The spring migration begins with the arrival in early February, of the Horned Larks, followed by ducks, blackbirds, geese and swans.
Point Pelee is best known for its great diversity of songbirds, in particular wood warblers. Of the 55 species of American wood warblers, 42 have been observed at the Point.
The peak of migration occurs in mid-May and coincides with the annual May month-long "Festival of Birds".
Point Pelee, located at the most southern point of mainland Canada is also famous for its Monarch butterfly migrations. Literally thousands of the beautiful butterfly, gather at the "Point" in the fall, waiting for favourable conditions for their flight south across Lake Erie.
The PAINTED TURTLE is a common North American turtle. The adult turtle ranges in length from 4 to 10 inches. The shell / carapace, is a smooth flattened oval and is green to black in colour. The skin of the Painted Turtle is black to olive with red and yellow stripes on the neck, legs and tail and yellow stripes on the head.
Painted Turtles can be found sunning themselves on rocks and logs and along the shores of ponds, lakes and streams, Painted Turtles are onnivorous, eating insects, aquatic plants, fruits and berries.
Fondest memory: Ethan spotted this cool fellow trying to cross the road. We pulled over and I went to pick him up. His toenails were very sharp, so you have to hold him in the middle. After we all took pictures of him, we brought him to the other side of the road and put him in the marshy grasses where he would be safe and sound -- for now. Unfortunately, hundreds of turtles, frogs and snakes are killed each year trying to cross the park road to access feeding and breeding habitats. So please drive carefully.
There are about 40 species of WATER LILY ( Nymphaea Odorata ) in the world.Water lilies have floating leaves. Many varieties may be found floating in ponds, lakes and sluggish streams just about everywhere in North America.
Water lily leaves are circular in shape and are notched to the center. The leaves arise on stalks from long rhizomes in the mud. Fragrant water lily flowers are snowy white and aromatic.
Fondest memory: I just love the sight of the beautiful white water lily in the ponds. You could sometimes see a turtle lazing on their broad leaves.
Found in ponds, lakes and sluggish streams SPATTERDOCK / COW LILY (Nuphur Advena) is a large plant whose leaves are often floating. Spatterdock has large heart-shaped leaves which are attached to long stems which arise from large, spongy rhizomes. Spatterdock flowers are yellow and half-opened at or above the water surface.
Fondest memory: These pond plants were beautiful to see. You would often see a dragonfly resting on the yellow flowers.
In 1918, Point Pelee became CANADA'S NINTH NATIONAL PARK. Between 1957 and 1970 the land acquisition program reduced the number of privately owned cottages and properties.The preservation of wildlife habitat was made a priority.
Today privately owned cottages line the drive leading up to the gates of the Park.
Fondest memory: This photo was taken by Hans from the observatory tower at the Marsh Boardwalk. You can see us -- Ethan, Lori and Jen making our way along the Boardwalk. What an awesome experience!
An array of insects, such as dragonflies and damselflies thrive in the humid and varied habitat, providing a food source for many other species.
The bullfrog, green frog, spring peeper, Northern leopard frog and six species of turtles inhabit the SWAMPLANDS of Point Pelee.
Posted as you enter the Park are the ENTRANCE FEES which are as follows:
Youth ( 6 - 16 ) $2.50
Adult (17 - 64 ) $5.00
Senior ( 65 + ) $4.25
Family ( 4 - 6 ) $12.50
Price includes the shuttle which you can board at the Visitor Center and takes you the 2.5 km to the Trailhead which leads to the "TIP".
Favorite thing: Point Pelee is Canada's most Southern point. THE "TIP" is a sandspit extending into Lake Erie. The length and shape of the sandspit varies according to water levels and currents. The shuttle from the Visitor Centre drops you off at the Trailhead where this picture was taken.
Favorite thing: Point Pelee National Park is famous for its bird watching . Since we are not bird watchers we cannot expand on that aspect . The park is located on the north shore of Lake Eire near Leamington and is a place to spend some time if you are waiting for a ferry to Pelee Island . It is an easy walk from the visitor centre to the end of the peninsula .