Peel Region occupies an area of 125,408 ha. Virtually the entire northern one-third of the municipality (Town of Caledon) is occupied by the Niagara Escarpment in the west and the Oak Ridges Moraine to the east (Figure 4). These are the only remaining areas within Peel that boast large intact tableland woodlots and many wetlands (Level 1 features) scattered across the landscape (Table 3).
The southern half of the Region is already fully urbanized (Cities of Mississauga and Brampton) or committed to future urban expansion. The intervening lands are still in active agricultural production, although the thick till soils on what is known as the Peel Plain are predominantly Class 6 and therefore not ideal for growing crops. These agricultural lands have been cleared for several generations and accordingly there is very little in the way of remaining forest cover throughout much of Peel.
Other than a number of small headwater tributaries of the Humber and Credit Rivers, there are relatively few natural heritage features associated with these urban fringe lands. Given the rapid northward growth experienced by Peel Region, it is likely that much of the land south of the Escarpment and Moraine has already been secured by land developers in anticipation of future demand for urban expansion.