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Nature lovers rejoice, Wye Marsh reopens

“I am sure that the chickadees will be happy to see visitors return with seed in hand!” Wye Marsh Wildlife Centre staffer says

The Wye Marsh Wildlife Centre is back open.

The Midland-area site officially started welcoming back visitors Friday, but with a number of protocols in place due to COVID-19.

“We are excited to be open once again and welcome visitors to explore the trails safely, to enjoy the benefits of being outdoors in this beautiful sunny weather,” Wye Marsh communications coordinator Amanda Swick said, adding the centre had to close during the most recent lockdown order.

“I am sure that the chickadees will be happy to see visitors return with seed in hand!”

The nature reserve is also reopening its visitor centre with a limit of one cohort at a time with groups asked to wait outside until the group ahead of them has completed check-in. All visitors will also be screened before checking in and masks and social distancing are required in the centre at all times.

“Safety of staff, volunteers and visitors is top priority to us at Wye Marsh, and that is why there are a number of safety measures in place,” Swick said, noting they’ve also made some trail sections one-way.

“Our organization is closely following provincial guidelines, and happy to do so to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

More information on our safety measures can be found here.

“We are also being clear in our messaging that the trails are open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.daily, and that all guests - hikers and cross-country skiers alike - must check in at the visitor centre upon arrival,” Swick added.

As well, the Birds of Prey area will again be open to allow visitors to get an up-close look at hawks, eagles and owls. However, ski and snowshoe rentals are currently unavailable with guests encouraged to bring their own equipment.

“Overall, we are incredibly grateful for the support and patience of our community during this time,” Swick said. “We have received wonderful messages of support as well as donations. Every little bit helps and is greatly appreciated!”