THE WILD BLUFFS HISTORYOur roots, where we've been & where we are headed!
Launch of our new and updated website. We will be producing a new brochure with up to date information and launching a new fundraiser. Stay tuned as we unveil our new initiative for 2016.
Throughout the years that the Wild Bluffs has existed, we have been a tireless voice for conservation and preservation in the area. The Wild Bluffs has launched several campaigns against development projects, which have included hundreds of hours of research, letter writing, phone calls, and hosting community meetings. Through this work, we have raised awareness of the unique geological and biological environment of The Bluffs, and gathered many supporters. We will continue to work towards alerting all levels of government to the need for preservation and protection for this area.
The Wild Bluffs were formally invited to sit on the Stakeholder Committee for the Scarborough Waterfront Project, as a voice for conservation and preservation. We produced a comprehensive wildlife audit based on eye-witness testimony from birding and wildlife groups, backed up with photographic and video evidence. We were able to identify almost 250 species of fauna within the area of The Scarborough Bluffs. Due to gaps in our expertise, especially regarding insects and fish, we now estimate The Bluffs to be home to nearly 400 species of fauna. We have noted that official records of this area only list anywhere from 84-89 species. With this knowledge in hand, we shift our focus from geology preservation to wildlife conservation.
The Wild Bluffs were invited to participate in their first Seedy Saturday. We produced the first version of our informational brochure, which allowed us to do more community outreach. The Wild Bluffs was the first to inform the community about the impending Scarborough Waterfront Project, and its potential impact for Bluffer’s Park and the entire area of The Bluffs. Membership to The Wild Bluffs passed the 150 mark. We launched our first successful fundraiser which met our goal of $750, allowing us to print brochures, and pay for our accumulated administrative costs, including website maintenance and hosting.
The Wild Bluffs continued to expand its membership, and began to identify areas where conservation was needed. Their focus was on preserving the geology of the area, and we were dismayed to learn that no real conservation effort had been made, leading to the destruction of nearly all the natural Bluffs.
The Wild Bluffs continued to blog on local issues surrounding environment and development, and started to work to connect other like-minded community groups. The TRCA, in conjunction with the City put forward a proposal to develop a formal trail through the area known locally as Chine Meadow. The community strongly opposed the project, effectively shutting it down. We began to see our role as community activists, helping connect community members and groups who were interested in conservation efforts.
After having written several well-received articles for The Bluffs Monitor, Beau Lukes, a web and graphic designer, suggested that a website be built so that Tracy could self-publish, and so that they could also publish photographs from the many nature enthusiasts that they met in The Bluffs. The Wild Bluffs was officially launched.
After witnessing the destruction of the beach at the bottom of Doris McCarthy trail, area resident Tracy Horvath was moved to write a letter to The Bluffs Monitor relaying her dismay and outrage over the project. After the letter was published, she received many emails and phone calls from area residents who were also unhappy with developments in The Bluffs. This incident prompted Tracy to start researching both the natural and development histories of the area.