MANITOBA’S NEWEST PROVINCIAL PARK
On July 4th 2011, Manitoba got another new park. After more than a decade of interim protection, the Fisher Bay Park Reserve has finally been given permanent status as a new 84,150 hectare provincial park! This wondrous boreal region, nominated by Fisher River Cree Nation, is two hours north of Winnipeg on the west shore of Lake Winnipeg. Long, sandy, pristine beaches can be found here, which provide much needed nesting habitat for the endangered piping plover, while the forests are teaming with foxes, bears, moose and wolves.
The Wilderness Committee has actively supported Fisher River’s park proposal for years. We published an Educational Report and collected thousands of letters supporting the creation of this new park. The establishment of this new park is a great success for Fisher River Cree Nation as well as the Wilderness Committee’s members and supporters who raised their voices for this park.
Fisher River has done thorough studies on diversifying their local economy through sustainable ventures, and the creation of this park provides opportunities for both cultural tourism and ecotourism to thrive in this large, intact natural area.
Although we’re delighted that the park is now protected, the boundaries chosen by the Manitoba government do not include areas identified in the Fisher Bay Ecological Significance Study. Fisher River Cree Nation has asked for expanded boundaries based on ecology, and the Wilderness Committee continues to support the expanded ecologically appropriate boundaries that Fisher River is requesting.