The Pickering wetland at the centre of a battle over conservation in Ontario is a blur of marsh grasses when seen speeding along its north side on either Highway 401 or by GO Train.
Bayly Street runs along the south side of the property. Pull into the Pickering Markets located there, a cavernous collection of antique and flea market vendors, where the ditch running between it and the street is thick with tall grasses, as if nature created a linear marsh.
Nature doesn’t make ditch-shaped marshes, of course, and this entire area between the 401 and Lake Ontario was once largely wetland, but now is a patchwork of industrial and commercial sites with bits of wetlands left over. They are connected to the Duffins Marsh nearby, all part of the vast Duffins Creek watershed that stretches north through Pickering into the Oak Ridges Moraine.
The property in question is bounded by Squires Beach…