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Central Lake Ontario Conservation Authority

Advancing watershed health through engagement, science
and conservation since 1958.

  • Accessible Trails
    Do you have accessible trails? We offer accessible trails at: Bowmanville Westside Marshes Conservation Area Connector to paved Waterfront Trail (200m) surface: crushed granular Heber Down Conservation Area Maple Leaf Trail (750 m) surface: crushed granular Iroquois Trail (Town of Whitby, 2.3 km) surface: asphalt ​ Lynde Shores Conservation Area Waterfront Trail (3.1 km) surface: asphalt ​ Purple Woods Conservation Area Discovery Trail (900 m) surface: crushed granular, rolling terrain though slopes do not exceed 8%
  • Bears
    Will I encounter a black bear in a conservation area? Black bears live in most parts of Ontario and are rare visitors in our conservation areas. For your personal safety, and for the well-being of bears, it is important to learn about bears and their behaviour. Please review the "Be Bear Wise" from the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry. ​ For an immediate emergency call: 911 To report a bear sighting in a conservation area call: 905 579 0411
  • Camping
    Is camping offered at any conservation areas? Unfortunately we do not offer camping at any of our conservation areas; however, Darlington Provincial Park offers seasonal camping.
  • Canoeing / Rentals
    Does Central Lake Ontario Conservation have canoes for rent? We do not rent out canoes, but we do have a seasonal* canoe launch (Open from July 15 to September 15) at the provincially significant Lynde Creek Marsh at Lynde Shores Conservation Area. This launch is off the main parking lot at the Victoria Street entrance. ​ *Canoeing/paddling is not permitted in this area during other times of the year in order to minimize the disturbance to wildlife that use this marsh during their sensitive breeding and migration periods.
  • Fallen Trees
    Who should I call about a fallen tree? If a tree from your property falls on your property or onto your property from a neighbouring property, it is your responsibility to remove and report service interruptions to hydro, and phone/cable providers. However there are exceptions when the tree is on public land as follows: ​If a tree falls onto your property from a Central Lake Ontario Conservation property, please contact us If a tree falls onto your property from a municipally owned park or property, please contact your municipality
  • Fishing
    Is fishing allowed in the conservation areas? Fishing is permitted at Bowmanville Westside Marshes Conservation Area, but anglers are asked to please stay on the designated trails, to take their garbage with them, and to fish only at approved locations. Anglers should be aware that while fishing is permitted, it is still regulated through the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, which includes the possession of a valid fishing license and respecting provincial catch limits. Safe consumption guidelines can be found at
  • Freedom of Information
    How do I submit a Freedom of Information Request? Fill out and submit our Access/Correction Request. A $5 fee applies.
  • Garbage Cans in the Conservation Areas
    Why aren't there more garbage cans in the conservation areas? Garbage receptacles in conservation areas are an attractant for our wildlife. Raccoons, skunks, and flying insects are all drawn to garbage, and can create a public safety issue for visitors. Wildlife and garbage generally results in garbage being spread over a large area, and possible health impacts to wildlife. Garbage is expensive! Staff time and equipment is required to collect and transport garbage along with disposal fees. Recovering the costs related to garbage receptacles would impact the parking fees and we make every effort to keep parking fees low so we can continue to offer affordable visits to our conservation areas. Central Lake Ontario Conservation does not sell or supply any products or materials that would generate garbage, such as drinks and snacks. Any garbage at the conservation areas has been brought in by visitors. We think it is reasonable that visitors who bring in garbage can take the garbage home for recycling and disposal. Staff hope that the "carry in, carry out" policy for garbage actually invokes thought about the waste we generate and encourages waste reduction and recycling at home.
  • Invasive Plants
    Where can I report invasive plants? Report your observations to the Ontario's Invading Species Awareness Program hotline to help track target areas and species ranges and contact Alex Kissel, Terrestrial Ecologist by email ( or phone (905 579 0411 ext. 107).
  • Photography
    May I take photos in the conservation areas? We encourage photography for personal enjoyment in all our conservation areas. Wildlife and landscape photography can be entered into our photo contest. In accordance with Ontario Regulation 101/90, we do charge a fee for professional photographers who are using the conservation areas to do business.
  • Report a Spill
    How Do I Report a Spill? Spills can be reported to the Province of Ontario by phone or through an online form.
  • Sensitive Areas Permit
    How do I apply for a Sensitive Areas Permit? Fill out the Application to Access Sensitive Areas and submit by fax, mail, or in person to Central Lake Ontario Conservation.
  • Wildlife
    What should I do if I see an injured animal or an abandoned baby animal? Do not approach or touch the animal. Often wild animals have the best chance of survival if left on their own. This is why it is important to assess the situation carefully. Is the animal exhibiting abnormal behaviour? If you are concerned, please contact Soper Creek Wildlife Rescue or the Toronto Wildlife Centre. If the animal is a turtle, please contact the Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre. If it is an animal emergency, be sure to contact the rescue centres by phone rather than email. The goal is always to rehabilitate and return wildlife back to the location where they were found. Recognize that it is illegal to keep any wild animal as a pet.
  • Winter Activity Equipment Rentals
    Does Central Lake Ontario Conservation offer winter activity equipment rentals? Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing are permitted in all of our conservation areas, pending conditions, however, there are no equipment rentals available. If you are interested in trying out snowshoeing, we do host an annual event in February where we invite the public to enjoy this winter activity at Enniskillen Conservation Area.


Creeks and Streams Flood Status


Lake Ontario Shoreline Flood Status


Online Tools

Regulation Area Search Tool

Purchase Annual Parking Pass

Find out if your property is in a floodplain

Board Meeting Agenda and Minutes

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