From our Experts

Photo : © Mario Francoeur

From our Experts

A Unifying Conservation Plan for the Protection of Mount Royal’s Ecological Network

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On April 4th, Les Amis de la montagne unveiled its Plan de conservation du réseau écologique du mont Royal 2023-2027 [plan for the conservation of Mount Royal’s ecological network 2023—2027, in French only]. which is the result of an extensive scientific analysis conducted with the Coalition des Montérégiennes.


Photo : Sébastien Foray

The objective of the five-year plan is to rally municipal authorities, institutions and the public around the implementation of concrete action to protect and enhance the connectivity of the mountain’s natural and open spaces. This is the first, important step in a coordinated, iterative approach designed to reverse the ongoing trend towards deterioration of the ecological network.

Elements of great ecological value are under threat

Mount Royal’s vast ecological network covers 423 hectares of greenspace and natural habitat over some 15 large properties and parks. The network’s woodlands, open spaces and wetlands are home to more than 700 species of vascular plants, 90 species of trees, and some 200 species of birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles. There are over 500 preserved trees found only in the woodlands of Thiotià:ke Otsira:kéhne and Mount Royal parks, along with a number of vulnerable plant and wildlife species. 

However, due to the vast, urban environment surrounding its ecological network and the millions of people who visit it every year, Mount Royal is subject to significant human-induced pressure. The overcrowding of parks and natural spaces and the development of certain emerging activities are harmful to the sustainability of its habitats and, along with other pressures like climate change and the establishment of non-native invasive species, have an adverse effect on the integrity of its natural spaces.

The time for action is now! 

To address the pressures currently being felt throughout the mountain’s territory, it is imperative that ambitious action that is consistent with the global climate crisis be taken quickly, The Plan de conservation du réseau écologique du mont Royal 2023-2027 establishes the actions that need to be taken to protect the mountain’s natural spaces. In total, 63 actions have been identified, costed and assigned monitoring indicators.

Les Amis’ plan sets out concrete initiatives, some of which, like the management of invasive species and the targeted closing of renegade trails, will be implemented with the cooperation and support of the City of Montréal. It includes mobilization and consultation measures designed to strengthen the capacity of stakeholders and members of civil society across Mount Royal's vast territory to take action. By doing so, the plan will help create a pool of the knowledge and resources needed to enhance the quality of the mountain’s natural environment and green spaces.

Through the conservation plan, Mount Royal is committed to becoming an innovative, collective, living laboratory with a mission to protect its natural, cultural and landscape heritage in an urban setting.

For more information on the actions to be taken, consult the fact sheet entitled Plan local de conservation de la colline du mont Royal created with the Coalition des Montérégiennes (in French only).

The Coalition des Montérégiennes

The Coalition is made up of 12 conservation groups that have pooled their efforts to achieve recognition for, protect, and connect the sites of high ecological value known as the Monteregian Hills, which stretch from the Oka Mountains to Mont Mégantic and include Mount Royal.

The hard work of the Coalition and its members has resulted in the establishment of the comprehensive Plan régional de conservation et de connectivité des collines Montérégiennes [regional plan for the conservation and connectivity of the Monteregian Hills] to highlight the importance of protecting these natural treasures. The conservation groups estimate that a budget of $150 million will be required to implement the measures set out in the plan.

Read the Plan régional de conservation et de connectivité des collines Montérégiennes (in French only) to find out more about the Monteregian Hills and the conservation actions to be carried out to protect them.


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