cootes paradise

Home Regions of OntarioHamilton, Halton, Brant Region

Coote's Paradise

Cootes Paradise is located at the western end of Lake Ontario and covers almost 800 acres and contains over a dozen streams and 25 kms of shoreline.

Cootes Paradise received it's name from Thomas Coote, a Lieutenant in the King's (or 8th) regiment of Foot 1776-1781, and then a Captain in the Cumberland (34th) Regiment 1782-1787. He was stationed at Niagara in 1782 and during his time there found his way to the marsh at the west end of Lake Ontario where he enjoyed shooting wildfowl which were so plentiful in the area.

From 500 to 1000 AD the area was originally inhabited by the Princess Point people. These indigenous people were the first to implement farming to the region by planting and harvesting maize, an early form of corn.

By the 20th century human encroachment had decimated many native plant species and the introduction of carp proved disastorous to native aquatic plants. In the early 1990's Project Paradise, part of the Hamilton Harbour Remedial Action Plan set out to restore a healthy wetland ecosystem.

In 2007 after many years of trying to eradicate the carp from the marsh a strong wind from the west blew all the water from the marsh out, leaving a muddy bottom. Extremely low lake levels forced all the carp into Lake Ontario through the Desjardins Canal at which time a carp exclusion grate was closed preventing their return.

Cootes Paradise is a Nationally Important Bird Area (IBA) with hundreds of species of birds using Cootes Paradise as a stopover on their migratory flights. There are more native plant species in this area than you will find anywhere else in Ontario. Today much of Cootes Paradise is under the stewardship of the Royal Botanical Gardens.

Places to Explore

Coote's Paradise
Dundurn Castle
Eramosa Karst Conservation Area
Rattlesnake Point Conservation Area
Royal Botanical Gardens
Silver Creek Conservation Area
Spencer Gorge-Tew's Falls/Webster's Falls Conservation Area

Ontario Towns and Cities

Dundas, Ontario
Georgetown, Ontario
Hamilton, Ontario

Explore by Region

R1: Southwest Ontario
R2: Niagara Canada
R3: Hamilton, Halton & Brant
R4: Huron, Perth, Waterloo & Wellington
R5: Greater Toronto Area
R6: York, Durham & the Hills of Headwaters
R7: Bruce Peninsula, Southern Georgian Bay & Lake Simcoe
R8: Kawarthas & Northumberland
R9: South Eastern Ontario
R10: Ottawa & Countryside
R11: Haliburton Highlands to the Ottawa Valley
R12: Muskoka, Parry Sound & Algonquin Park
R13a: North Eastern Ontario
R13b: Sault Ste. Marie – Algoma
R13c: Northwest Ontario