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Mississauga News - Jan. 13, 1979, - pg.# - Letter to editor by Donald Barber
Honour the Birdman
The City of Mississauga is considering purchasing the last acre of the Winding Lane, or Roy Ivor, Bird Sanctuary in the Sawmill Valley Creek and Trail area, across from University of Toronto Mississauga.
For more than 75 years, the sanctuary has been world-renowned and in the last 25 years, run by Bernice Inman-Emery, who opened its doors to more native wildlife.
Even before there was a Mississauga, people knew of Roy. In time he became known as the Birdman of Mississauga, and Bernice as the Birdwoman.
Ivor has written for National Geographic as well as other international magazines in his modest efforts to advance people’s appreciation of their feathered friends, and he published a book, I Live With Birds.
Both Mr. Ivor and his bird sanctuary are historical elements to Mississauga because both he and Bernice were host to countless school trips for students to learn and discover the natural world and how we can heal the injuries, more often than not, caused by mankind. It is a living cultural heritage or legacy site.
The sanctuary is well set up with existing outdoor pens, just the kind needed by Toronto Wildlife Centre, as it needs a place to expand and many people from Mississauga already bring those in need there. This would be a match made in heaven. We owe it to future generations.
When City Council considers the future use or destruction of the valuable bird sanctuary, I hope it considers the whole area and Mississauga.
We owe Mr. Ivor a big debt, and thanks. In 1928, he bought 40 acres, but over time it shrunk to three acres. His lands were once described as the most beautiful valley and largest track of continuous woods in Mississauga. Let’s keep his dream alive and show Mississaugans that City Council understands and cares.
Council should consider re-naming the Sawmill Valley Creek and Trail the Roy Ivor Woods, and Bernice could be honoured by naming the area used for healing as the Bernice Native Wildlife Sanctuary.
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