Inventories of flora and fauna have shown that while Grosse Île covers little surface area, it is nevertheless home to a particularly rich variety of plantlife, with more than 600 species having been identified. Although major human activities occurred during the previous century, such as the felling of trees for firewood, the ecological status of some areas shows no apparent signs of the impact of these disturbances. Human occupation of the island for more than 150 years has nevertheless limited the presence of wildlife. Studies of forest plantlife (Marineau and Vaudry, 1997, Marineau, 1995; Mercier and Rouleau, 1988) and shoreline plantlife (Gilbert, 1993) have identified rare species and valued plant communities that could be affected by future development and increased visitation on the island. An inventory of land plants (Flora Quebeca, 1999) served to add four new species that are considered to be rare, endangered or threatened. As a result, a management plan for valued plants should be produced in order to ensure that these species are adequately managed and protected. In addition, an inventory of exotics served to establish a high (24%) percentage of introduced plant species. In that connection, the shoreline presents a very high potential for invasion. 22 Salathé and Savard (1993) have recommended that research into certain species of fauna should continue in order to broaden our knowledge of these island populations. The presence of chiropterans on the island prompted Parks Canada to conduct inventories in 1997 and 1998. The findings show that five of the eight species of bats present in Quebec are also found on the island. Grosse Île provides refuge to Canada’s largest summertime population of bats. This situation prompted the production of a management plan for protecting these small mammals (Vaudry, 1999). In addition, the presence of white-tailed deer on the island impacts on grass or meadow areas. This situation has also entailed producing an assessment of this situation (Vaudry, 1999) and indicating follow-up and management measures that will be required over the next several years.
22. One of the most common species considered to be invasive is purple loosestrife. This species was the subject of a management plan (Lajeunesse, 1998), which recommended controlling the spread of this plant in wetlands.
Analysis of the current situation
Ownership and legal context
Commemorative integrity of the site
Condition of landscapes and level-1 resources
Communication of site messages of national historic significance
Impacts of activities past and present
Public visitation and use
Facilities and services
Regional tourism context