Government of Nova Scotia Government of Nova Scotia Nova Scotia, Canada


Protected Areas


Ghost Antler

Ghost Antler Ghost Antler Nature Reserve hosts a nationally significant concentration of rare lichens associated with poorly drained forested areas.

The lichens thrive in moist black spruce, fir, tamarack, and red maple forests. Though located in the interior of Shelburne County, the Atlantic ocean is close enough to help sustain the humid conditions the lichens require to survive. The site also benefits by being relatively isolated from significant human disturbances.

Among the dozens of lichen species that find refuge here are rarities such as ghost antler lichen, blue felt lichen, rimmed shingles lichen, blistered jellyskin lichen, frosted glass-whiskers, and peppered moon lichen. The site is one of only three known locations in North America where hidden jellyskin lichen (leptogium hibernicum) has been discovered.

Aside from poorly drained forest, this reserve also features several red maple swales, fens, and treed and open bogs.

Access to Wentworth Lake and two private lots adjacent to the site is not affected by the reserve. Three forest access roads which cut through the area not part of the reserve and remain open to vehicle use. Boat use on Mahaney Creek is not affected.

This site is identified as “Wentworth Lake Nature Reserve” in the Province’s 2013 Parks and Protected Areas Plan; however, the name is now “Ghost Antler Nature Reserve” to differentiate it from another site at Wentworth Lake, Digby County. Aside from being the name of a rare lichen, “ghost antler” has some historic relevancy, as this part of Shelburne County is among the last places where woodland caribou were seen in the province, early in the 20th century.