Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Governments buying Islands

Canada: Nova Scotian Conservation Group Adds New Island to Protected Area

The Mahone Islands Conservation Association is celebrating bringing another island into public ownership, with Squid Island forming the latest addition to their ever-expanding protected area.

Squid Island - Photo Courtesy of Vladi Private Islands

Squid Island – Photo Courtesy of Vladi Private Islands

With the help of the Province of Nova Scotia, the Mahone Islands Conservation Association (MICA) has succeeded in bringing yet another privately-owned island into the public sphere. In a recent communiqué to the group’s supporters, MICA Chairman John Meisner was excited to reveal that the latest addition to their ever-expanding protected zone is none other than Squid Island.

After contributing CAD 180,000 towards the acquisition of the island (approximately 20% of the original CAD 950,000 asking price), Squid Island has now officially been transferred from private ownership into public hands and is set to be managed by MICA, who will be operating with the able assistance of the group’s long-term partners: the Province of Nova Scotia.

Describing the purchase process in a brief statement released last Friday, Chairman Meisner was quick to give thanks to MICA’s supporters: “Fortunately, we had sufficient funds in reserve that we did not require a fund raising campaign. These funds were the result of donations by MICA members and supporters, the success of our annual Gala Dinner and Auction and the generosity of the artists and donors and Corporate Supporters.”

The management of Squid Island will formally be organized as part of a new Stewardship Agreement, similar to those governing the scores of other islands under the protection of the Nova Scotian conservation group. And, whilst it’s not yet clear what is planned under the new Stewardship Agreement, it is expected that, as well as ensuring the long-term future of the island, public access to the island will continue to be upheld.

Squid Island

Squid Island - Photo Courtesy of Vladi Private Islands

Squid Island – Photo Courtesy of Vladi Private Islands

Located within the Mahone Bay region of Nova Scotia, Squid Island is easily reachable from the coastal community of Chester Basin. As well as being close to the amenities of this quaint coastal town, the island boasts an enviably close proximity to a series of full service marinas and even offers effortless access to one of the finest sailing reviers on the Eastern Seaboard.

Comprising of 12 acres, Squid Island’s unspoiled, tree-lined terrain is essentially in its natural state aside from some silviculture work which was carried out several years ago. As such, the island is widely considered to be one of the region’s most beautiful islands and has long-since formed a popular relaxation and picnic spot amongst local residents thanks to its beautiful, western-facing, crescent-shaped stretch of beach.

As well as its sheltered sandy beach, Squid Island forms home to a three-acre grassy area and a large, fresh-water pond. The island is something of a rarity in that it has never been sub-divided – a fact that is sure to have captured the attention of the Mahone Island Conservation Association Board Members as they debated whether to include the island within their conservation area or not.

Easily reachable from the coastal community of Chester Basin, the island boasts an enviably close proximity to a series of full service marinas, offering effortless access to one of the finest sailing reviers on the Eastern Seaboard.

The Mahone Islands Conservation Association

Since its formation in 2002, the Mahone Islands Conservation Association (MICA) has raised over CAD 1,100,000 from their generous supporters. Together with their major funding partners, the Municipality of the District of Lunenburg and Province of Nova Scotia, MICA has established a significant legacy in Mahone Bay. Their work has brought a score of private islands back into public ownership, including the likes of Andrews Island, Backmans Island, Covey Island, Covey Island, the northern and central parts of Masons Island, Sacrifice Island, Shag Island and Bella Island. In addition, the conservation group also manages four islands generously donated by the Long Island Preservation Society: Long, Centre, Dry and Snipe Islands.

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