Point Pelee National Park

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Point Pelee National Park
IUCN category II (national park)
Point Pelee National Park boardwalk, September 2017 (4).jpg
The boardwalk in September 2017
LocationOntario, Canada
Nearest cityLeamington, Ontario
CoordinatesCoordinates: 41°57′51″N 82°31′4″W / 41.96417°N 82.51778°W / 41.96417; -82.51778
Area15 km2 (5.8 sq mi)
Established1918
Governing bodyParks Canada
Designated27 May 1987

Point Pelee National Park (French: Parc national de la Pointe-Pelée), also known as just Point Pelee, is a national park in Essex County. Essex County is in Ontario, Canada. Point Pelee is a peninsula of land and has many marshes and forest habitats. The shape of the park is a triangle with a sharp point in Lake Erie. Middle Island in Lake Erie is also part of the national park.[1]

The national park is at the southernmost part of Canada. The area is around 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) by 4.5 kilometres (2.8 mi) wide in the north part of the park. The park was created in 1918. It was the first national park of Canada that was created to protect the area. All of the other national parks of Canada were created at first for tourism. It became a Ramsar site on 27 May 1987.[2] The park also became a dark-sky preserve in 2006.[3]

History[change | change source]

The First Nations of Canada lived on Point Pelee for a long time. This was before the Europeans came to colonize the area.[1] People think people used to live on the biggest archaeological site that was found at Point Pelee between AD 700 and 900.[4] Point Pelee was named by two priests in 1670. They were Fathers Dollier and Galinee.[5] The word pelée is the French word for bald.

Naturalists and hunters wanted to protect the area.[6] They thought that the biodiversity of virds needed protection from land development in the area.[7] Before the park was created, a group called the Great Lakes Ornithological Society was created.[8] They studied the bird migration in the area. In 1915, they recommended that Point Pelee become a national park.[9] It was the first national park that was created to protect the area. That changed how national parks were created.[7] When the park was created, there were still many cottages in the area and two hotels.[6] There were also many farms and a school.[7]

Many cottages were still being built after the national park was created. After the Wall Street Crash of 1929, no more land in the park was sold. The park had a development plan in the 1920s. A highway was supposed to be built in the park.[7] Beginning in the 1960s, a lot of people went to the park. Point Pelee became the national park that the most people went to. Almost 781 000 people went to Point Pelee in 1963. Because many people visited the park, a lot of the nature and wildlife was destroyed. The government of Canada said that Point Pelee shouldn't be a national park anymore because of this.[7][9]

After the 1980s, the government of Canada began protecting the area more. They stopped allowing cars to drive to the tip. Instead, they began a shuttle to the tip.[7] They began buying all the cottages in the park and removing them. They removed more than 350 buildings. They have also removed two roads. In 1989, duck hunting wasn't allowed in the park anymore. In 1991, the government began killing some of the deer in the park to protect the plants.[7] They have killed some of the deer a few more times after that.[10]

Point Pelee became a dark-sky preserve in 2006. It was the first national park of Canada to become a dark-sky preserve.[3] In 2006, waves from Lake Erie washed away the tip.[11] After this, in 2007, the tip reappeared. This was because Lake Erie's water level went down.[12] The tip changes each year, growing longer or shorter. In 2017, a fire in Point Pelee burned down some of the marsh land. Around 125 hectares were burned down.[13][14]

Geography[change | change source]

The park is in the St. Lawrence Lowlands. It is Canada's smallest national park. This is because it is only 1,564 hectares (3,860 acres).[1][15] A very large area of the park is marshland and has ponds. This is 70% of the park. The rest of the park is mostly forest. Forests are 21% of the park.[1][2] The sandspit around the park mostly has till plains. These till plains were created in the last Ice Age.[2][15]

Climate[change | change source]

Point Pelee has a humid continental climate. It has warm and humid summers and cold winters. The temperatures of the park are changed by Lake Erie.[2]

Climate data for Point Pelee National Park
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 13.0
(55.4)
14.5
(58.1)
22.5
(72.5)
28.5
(83.3)
31.5
(88.7)
33.5
(92.3)
34.0
(93.2)
34.5
(94.1)
31.0
(87.8)
25.5
(77.9)
20.6
(69.1)
18.5
(65.3)
34.5
(94.1)
Average high °C (°F) −0.8
(30.6)
0.3
(32.5)
5.0
(41.0)
11.6
(52.9)
18.1
(64.6)
23.6
(74.5)
26.8
(80.2)
25.7
(78.3)
21.6
(70.9)
15.0
(59.0)
8.3
(46.9)
1.9
(35.4)
13.1
(55.6)
Daily mean °C (°F) −3.9
(25.0)
−3
(27)
1.4
(34.5)
7.4
(45.3)
13.7
(56.7)
19.4
(66.9)
22.4
(72.3)
21.5
(70.7)
17.6
(63.7)
11.4
(52.5)
5.5
(41.9)
−0.7
(30.7)
9.4
(48.9)
Average low °C (°F) −6.9
(19.6)
−6.2
(20.8)
−2.2
(28.0)
3.1
(37.6)
9.3
(48.7)
15.1
(59.2)
18.0
(64.4)
17.2
(63.0)
13.6
(56.5)
7.8
(46.0)
2.6
(36.7)
−3.3
(26.1)
5.7
(42.3)
Record low °C (°F) −27.0
(−16.6)
−24.0
(−11.2)
−18.0
(−0.4)
−9.8
(14.4)
−3.2
(26.2)
3.0
(37.4)
7.0
(44.6)
4.0
(39.2)
−1.7
(28.9)
−5.5
(22.1)
−9.4
(15.1)
−23.0
(−9.4)
−27.0
(−16.6)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 57.2
(2.25)
58.7
(2.31)
69.9
(2.75)
75.6
(2.98)
76.9
(3.03)
79.8
(3.14)
83.6
(3.29)
85.9
(3.38)
92.7
(3.65)
69.6
(2.74)
94.8
(3.73)
77.4
(3.05)
922.1
(36.30)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 27.9
(1.10)
31.3
(1.23)
51.7
(2.04)
71.7
(2.82)
76.9
(3.03)
79.8
(3.14)
83.6
(3.29)
85.9
(3.38)
92.7
(3.65)
69.6
(2.74)
90.9
(3.58)
56.8
(2.24)
818.8
(32.24)
Average snowfall cm (inches) 30.5
(12.0)
27.3
(10.7)
18.4
(7.2)
3.8
(1.5)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.06
(0.02)
3.6
(1.4)
20.0
(7.9)
103.8
(40.9)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 13.4 11.4 12.8 14.7 13.3 11.7 10.9 10.1 11.7 13.5 15.3 15.4 154.4
Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 4.7 4.9 9.0 14.0 13.3 11.7 10.9 10.1 11.7 13.5 14.2 8.9 127.1
Average snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 9.2 7.1 4.7 1.3 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.15 1.7 7.5 31.6
Source: Environment Canada[16]

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "Point Pelee National Park of Canada Management Plan" (PDF). Parks Canada. June 2010. ISBN 9781100157566. Retrieved 1 May 2018.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "Canada 26: Point Pelee National Park, Ontario" (PDF). Ramsar Sites Information Service. Ramsar. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Hill, Sharon (23 March 2018). "Dark park: Point Pelee's dark sky preserve wows stargazers". Windsor Star. Retrieved 31 December 2018.
  4. Battin, J. G.; Nelson, J.G. (1978). Man's impact on Point Pelee National Park. Ottawa: National and Provincial Parks Association of Canada. p. 44, 53. ISBN 9780920570050.
  5. McNamee, Kevin; Suzuki, David; Kraulis, J. A. (2004). The National Parks of Canada. pp. 177–179. ISBN 1-55263-569-4.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Finkelstein, Maxwell W. (8 April 2009). "Point Pelee National Park". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 Hill, Sharon (29 May 2018). "Playground or protection? 100-year-old Point Pelee National Park finds a balance". Windsor Star. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  8. Montgomerie, Bob (7 August 2017). "Great Lakes Ornithological Club". American Ornithological Society. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Maru, Sanjay (29 May 2018). "Point Pelee celebrating 100 years as a designated national park". CBC News. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  10. Casey, Liam (13 January 2017). "Ontario First Nation helping in deer cull, part of plan to help species at risk". Global News. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  11. "High winds leave Point Pelee pointless". CBC News. 16 March 2006. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  12. Schmidt, Doug (8 October 2007). "Point returns". Windsor Star. Archived from the original on 23 December 2007. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  13. Chen, Dalton (30 March 2017). "More than 125 hectares of marsh land burned in fire at Point Pelee National Park". Windsor Star. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  14. "Fire crews letting Point Pelee fire burn out". CTV Windsor. 30 March 2017. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  15. 15.0 15.1 "An Overview of Environmental Canada's Groundwater Research Activities at Point Pelee National Park" (PDF). Parks and Protected Areas Research in Ontario. 1998. pp. 225–238. Retrieved 24 September 2018.
  16. "Point Pelee, Ontario". Canadian Climate Normals 1981–2010. Environment Canada. Retrieved 26 December 2018.

Other websites[change | change source]