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The earliest visitors to the Great Lakes region were in awe of its magnificent forests. But early settlers also found scattered examples of unique rock wildlands – flat, barren and largely treeless – now known as Great Lakes alvars. These globally imperiled habitats persist, still largely undisturbed and still supporting species not known anywhere else.
The Alvars of Ontario summarizes the distribution, ecology and inhabitants of these wild rock gardens, and compares them across Ontario's Great Lakes region. The best remaining alvars, documented here, deserve our best conservation efforts.