For the first time in over a decade, the province of Ontario has unveiled its newest conservation reserve. Introducing the Monarch Point Conservation Reserve – an International Monarch Butterfly Reserve and an Important Bird and Biodiversity Area.

Located in Prince Edward County, the new reserve sprawls across almost 4,000 acres of land along its south shores.

If you haven’t already guessed, the conservation reserve is named after the monarch butterfly, which according to Ontario Parks, is common in the area thanks to its annual migration.

“We are thrilled that Ontario’s first new conservation reserve in 10 years is right here in our backyard,” said Steve Ferguson, Mayor, County of Prince Edward.

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monarch point
Photo via Ontario Parks

“The County is well-known for its natural beauty and rich biodiversity. Creating Monarch Point Conservation Reserve is a critical development for protecting the many species that rely on this area and giving the community wonderful opportunities to responsibly enjoy this beautiful corner of our municipality.”

The new reserve was formerly known as Ostrander Crown Land Block and Point Petre Provincial Wildlife Area. It will continue to provide critical habitat for an array of species, like the at-risk monarch butterfly, migratory birds, reptiles, and plants.

And if you were wondering whether you’re allowed to visit this place, you definitely can! Per Ontario Parks, conservation reserves aren’t as popular as Ontario parks but there is ample opportunity for hiking, birdwatching, and hunting.

“If you do visit, please treat Monarch Point (and all conservation reserves) with extra-special care, ensuring you are not trampling on sensitive areas or leaving any litter behind.,” shares Ontario Parks.

From Toronto, it’s about a two-and-a-half hour drive so it is definitely day trip worthy.

Enjoy the last few weeks of summer outdoors and explore Monarch Point Conservation Reserve!

Monarch Point Conservation Reserve

Where: Prince Edward County