20 years ago, the Peterborough Natural Areas strategy was developed to protect, restore and enhance Peterborough’s Natural heritage.


As part of the strategy, 10 areas were identified as ecologically important, including Jackson Park and Beavermead Park.

However, these 10 areas have not been surveyed since 1996…

And the current status of these areas is unknown… ….A #green mystery!


Several questions need to be answered….Like:

1.) What has changed in the past 20 years?

2) Have the areas been affected by urban development?

Trent University Student, Vanessa Potvin, is conducting research alongside Dr. Heather Nicol, to find out!

Vanessa is assessing the health of these 10 areas through Geographic Information Systems software.


She is comparing aerial maps from 1996 to 2016 maps to better understand what changes have occurred in these natural heritage areas.

Vanessa will remap these areas to determine the net gains and losses over the past 2 decades.  


Vanessa’s research aims to determine what changes have occurred in these key natural heritage areas in #PTBO …

And she wants to help develop #green recommendations to the City of Peterborough to monitor, maintain and manage these areas more closely.

Vanessa’s research project seeks solutions to protect and preserve these areas to maintain and promote #green outdoor recreation in our community.

Vanessa describes her Trent Experience:

“The Trent School of the Environment is like a giant family – everyone knows each other, faculty and students. You get that one-on-one time with your professors, getting to know them. Research is continuously being undertaken at Trent that requires the help of students, where they get that practical work experience! At Trent, there is ALWAYS a way to get your hands dirty!”

Vanessa is doing her duty to keep nature a beauty!

Way to go Vanessa.