Port au Choix
SAM Member Since: September 2009
Acres Protected: 11
The Town of Port au Choix, incorporated in 1966, is located on the western side of the island of Newfoundland, and has long been known for its fishery and rich cultural heritage. The area's rich resources have drawn people to Port au Choix for over 5,500 years, and it has been a crossroads of various native North American and European cultures. Archaeological finds from this rich history prompted the creation of a National Historic Site. It was only relatively recently that Port au Choix became recognized for its rich terrestrial natural history, as an important location for the Limestone Barrens.
Limestone Barrens & Species at Risk
The Limestone Barrens comprise only a tiny portion of the Island of Newfoundland's surface area, but support a very high percentage of its rare plants. Of the 298 vascular plants considered rare on the Island, 104 occur on the Barrens and 22 of these species are found only on the Great Northern Peninsula. The Town of Port au Choix has been identified by the Limestone Barrens Species at Risk Recovery Team as having the most vulnerable population of the threatened Fernald's braya in the world. In addition to Fernald's braya, Wild chives and Wooly arnica are both rare Limestone Barrens plant species that are found in parts of Port au Choix.