About Dave Cooper

An award winning Photographer at davecooperphotography.ca and a graduate of the New York Institute of Photography.

Part 2 Point Pelee

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Part 2 Point Pelee National Park (Read Part 1) by Dave Cooper

From the tower near the marsh walk you can see the many Weeping Willow trees that grow thick on the eastern side of the point right next to the cattails that cover the swampy areas.

Also in this area are ponds with lily pads, which still look good even though autumn has now arrived.

On another path near the visitors centre we came across an old barn and a house that were built in the 1800s and people were still living here until 1969.

Here is one little friend, a Blue Heron that I found fishing for his lunch in a small stream near the boathouse. Herons are migratory birds; this one may end up in the Washington D.C. area, a common location for many of the long wingspan birds found here in Southern Ontario.

The Beach Walk along the west side of the point is 2.5 kilometers long and a suggested 30 minute walk, but for a photographer like me, who is always looking for that next photo opportunity, it usually takes four times as long. I found a nice Cactus patch growing along the beach. Below is a photo of one of the many healthy specimens.

I almost stepped on this little guy on my walk back to the parking lot at the visitors centre. I don’t think I have ever seen a two toned frog before. He blended in very well with the grass along the path. After a search on the website “naturewatch.ca” I find this type to be known as “Green Frogs” and he will find a shallow pond and hibernate until spring.

What is the point of not going to the most southerly point of mainland Canada and not having your photo taken? Here is Marjorie just after the last wave filled her shoes full of cold lake water!

Point Pelee National Park, Ontario Canada

by Guest Blogger Dave Cooper

Part One…

Point Pelee National Park lies in Essex County in Southwestern Ontario near Leamington and tapers to a point as it extends into Lake Erie. Residing on the 42nd Parallel North, Point Pelee National Park shares this latitude with the Island of Corsica, France; Rome, Italy; Jilin in the People’s Republic of China; the Oregon-California border and the New York-Pennsylvania border in the United States.

Originally inhabited by indigenous people from AD 700 and many centuries later shared  with Europeans Settlers, subsequently, the Chippewa people were forced from this area and this land remains unceded indigenous land. Point Pelee was made a national park in 1918 by the urging of bird watchers and hunters.

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The point is part of a series of stepping stones across Lake Erie for the great migration of over 360 species of birds as well as butterflies and dragon flies every spring and fall. Lake Erie moderates the temperatures here by cooling more slowly than the surrounding land but the point still experiences warm humid summers and cold winters. The record high temperature here was recorded at 34.5C or 91.1F and the record low was  -27C or 16.6F.

On my visit here on October 5th 2012 I saw only four monarch butterflies and very few birds, only the hawks, bluejays and these wild turkeys, which stay here year round.

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Canada’s most southern point of land has many walking trails, from beach walks to boardwalks to broad paved roads. One path took us to an abandoned cemetery, last used in the early 1900s.

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Copyright ©Dave Cooper 2012.   Visit davecooperphotography.ca