Farley Mowat gives Cape Breton land to nature trust
Farley Mowat and his wife, Claire, are donating more than 200 acres of land on Cape Breton Island to the Nova Scotia Nature Trust Friday.
The couple has lived in River Bourgeois for 30 years.
Theiconic Canadian author and environmentalistis calling on other Nova Scotians to follow his example and help protect the province's coastline by donating their land to the conservation charity.
"Nova Scotia is like every other part of the western world, teetering on the edge of falling into some developer's hands and being destroyed for money," Mowat told CBC News.
"But it is just at the crux, and at this point Claire and I have decided we should give it to its real owners."
Mowat said they've closely studied the animals, birds, insects and plant life on their property, and are scared by the decline they have witnessed.
He said his family wants to make sure nothing interferes with the land that runs along the coast of St. Peter's Bay.
The Mowats' donation is being made through a federal tax incentive program.
Bonnie Sutherland, executive director of the Nova Scotia Nature Trust, is delighted by the donation.
The land contains fresh water wetlands and bogs, two peninsulas with estuarial inland bays, beaches and a fresh water lagoon.
"So, it has a real diversity of habitats, a lot of different species that depend on this kind of property," Sutherland said.
"I think it's significant beyond this particular piece, which is affectionately known as Farley's Ark, the place where he's preserved these species and wants to see that natural oasis protected and preserved into the future.
"But it's also really significant because of the context of Nova Scotia's coastline where 95 per cent of the coast is in private hands."
Farley Mowat is also taking on the role of patron for the Nature Trust's Campaign for the Coast.