Family of late Truro surgeon donates large parcel of forested land for conservation

The family of a late Truro surgeon and part-time maple syrup farmer has donated a 366-hectare mature sugar maple forest to the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC).

Dr. Steven Cook, along with brothers Dr. Laurie Cook and Dr. David Cook, made the donation in honour of their late father, Dr. George Cook.

The property is located near New Annan in the Cobequid Hills, at the headwaters of the French River, which forms part of the municipal water supply for the town of Tatamagouche.

For 30 years, the property was the site of Dr. Cook’s Maple Ridge Farm, a 25,000-tree commercial maple syrup operation. 

The NCC says the property will be known as the Dr. George Cook Nature Reserve.

Craig Smith (Nature Conservancy of Canada), John Caraberis (Nature Conservancy of Canada), Dr Steven Cook, Susan Cook, and Cumberland-Colchester MP Bill Casey

Craig Smith (Nature Conservancy of Canada), John Caraberis (Nature Conservancy of Canada), Dr Steven Cook, Susan Cook, and Cumberland-Colchester MP Bill Casey

In addition to sugar maple, the property includes extensive intact stands of mature yellow birch, white ash, hemlock and red spruce.

Some areas of the nature reserve have stands more than 100 years old.