In the City of London, 21natural areas are currently designated as "Environmentally Significant Areas" or ESA's. These areas exist within both agricultural and urban settings and include wetlands, forests and meadows as well as river corridors and valleylands and significant wildlife habitat. The City, funds a contract with the Upper Thames River Conservation Authority (UTRCA), to manages nine of these ESA's; Kilally Meadows, Kains Woods, Meadowlily Woods, Medway Valley Heritage Forest, Sifton Bog, Warbler Woods, Westminster Ponds, Coves and Lower Dingman.
The ESA's are an integral part of London's Natural Heritage System connecting valley lands, parks and other open spaces. In addition to the designated habitats, London has many other natural areas within the city limits including some significant woodlands that have been incorporated into parks.
The City of London was recognized with the Lee Symmes Municipal Award by Ontario Nature as a Conservation Hero for our commitment to protecting our ESAs. The Lee Symmes Municipal Award recognizes municipalities that demonstrate community leadership and exceptional achievement in planning or implementing programs that protect and regenerate the natural environment within a community.
- Kains Woods Hiking Trail
- Killaly Meadows
- Meadowlily Woods
- Medway Valley Heritage Forest
- Sifton Bog
- Warbler Woods
- Westminster Ponds
- Lower Dingman
Some things to Remember
To help preserve the natural environment please adhere to the following rules when visiting London's ESAs:
- Please use the official access points indicated on the trail maps.
- Stay on the managed trails (marked with yellow blazes)
- All pets must be on leash (2 m/6 ft max.)
- Do not disturb wildlife or pick or transplant flowers
- Access is allowed from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
- Bicycles are not permitted in ESA's with the exception of asphalt or crushed gravel paths in Kilally Meadows, and Medway Valley Heritage Forest.
- Keep the ESA's litter free - PLEASE pick up after yourself.
- Fishing is permitted with a provincial fishing licence. No hunting is permitted.