Lindsay, ON – April 10, 2017 – Parents are encouraged to register early for the Nature Explorer Summer Camps, with the first of four one-week summer camps offered at Fleming College and Ken Reid Conservation Area already more than half-full.
The four, one-week camps offered in partnership between Fleming College and Kawartha Conservation will be held in July and August.
“There has been a lot of interest in the camps this year,” explained Nancy Aspden, Coordinator, Environmental Programs at Kawartha Conservation. “We have a great program for kids aged 6 to 10 and we have been receiving a lot of calls from interested parents and caregivers.”
The week-long summer camps focus on fun, hands-on activities around environmental education and outdoor skills. Campers are going to explore wildlife, get their hands dirty, participate in activities that teach outdoor skills, conduct water measurements and explore aquatic life, undertake experiments and much more.
“Campers are also going to work on different projects and crafts that they can take home at the end of a day and participate in a variety of games and physical activities like scavenger hunts and orienteering activities,” said Ms. Aspden.
Week A camps will be held from July 17 to July 21 and August 21 to 25, while Week B camps will be held from July 24 to 28 and August 14 to August 18.
Week A camps will alternate between Fleming College and Ken Reid Conservation Area and focus on wildlife, habitats, aquatics, nature art and wilderness skills, while Week B camps will alternate between Ken Reid and Fleming College and focus on birds, rocks/minerals/soils, wetlands, climate change/weather/water cycle and wilderness skills.
March 29, 2017 – The Kawartha Conservation Board of Directors is pleased to announce Mark Majchrowski has accepted the position of Chief Administrative Officer for Kawartha Conservation effective April 1.
Board Chair Ted Smith made the announcement Wednesday evening during the Kawartha Conservation Annual General Meeting in Port Perry.
“Mark is a natural and well-qualified choice to ensure the successful future of our organization,” said Mr. Smith during the announcement.
Mr. Majchrowski started his career with Kawartha Conservation in 1999 as a Biologist/GIS Specialist, progressing to Director, Integrated Watershed Management and Science. In the Director role, Mr. Majchrowski has been responsible for Kawartha Conservation’s technical programming, including planning and regulation services, Source Water Protection, science and monitoring programs, Lake Management Planning, floodplain mapping, stewardship services and conservation areas management.
“I would like to thank the Board for this opportunity and for their confidence and support,” said Mr. Majchrowski. “I am excited to be able to continue to work with such an incredibly talented and hard-working staff in my new capacity as CAO.”
Mr. Majchrowski added the strength of Kawartha Conservation comes from the many successful partnerships across the watershed and beyond.
“I am looking forward to continuing to build upon our strong municipal and educational partnerships and programs and working with all of our tireless volunteers who are dedicated and committed to supporting our environment and our communities,” he said.
Mr. Majchrowski has a Hons. B.Sc., Physical Geography/Environmental Science Degree from Trent University and went on to complete a diploma in GIS – Applications Specialist at Sir Sandford Fleming College. He has also completed a Professional Management Certificate at University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Lean Six Sigma Greenbelt training and obtained an Ecological Land Classification Certificate from the Ministry of Natural Resources.
Mr. Majchrowski replaces Rob Messervey who retired in December.
Lindsay, ON – March 21, 2017 – With Spring almost upon us, now is a great time for teachers in the Kawartha Watershed to book outdoor education sessions and classes for their students in Junior Kindergarten to Grade 12.
Outdoor education classes and programs at Kawartha Conservation are an affordable way to bring students into a natural, outdoor setting where they get to experience hands-on learning in a fun environment.
Classes are all based on the Ontario education curriculum which provides teachers with an opportunity to book classes that directly relate to subject areas their students are already taking.
“The feedback we have received from teachers and students is great,” said Nancy Aspden, Coordinator, Environmental Programs/GIS Specialist. “At Ken Reid Conservation Area, our outdoor education classes bring learning to life and engage students in new, fun and meaningful ways.”
Classes range from science-based programs including water bugs, soil types, wetlands and plants, to environmental recreation programs including orienteering, and environmental art programs including environmental sculpting and nature photography.
“With more than a dozen different classes and sessions as part of our outdoor education program, there is definitely something for teachers and students in all ages and grades,” said Ms. Aspden. “The Spring sessions fill up quickly, so we encourage teachers and schools to contact us early to ensure they get the day and session they want.”
To learn more about the classes offered view our Outdoor Education course descriptions at http://kawarthaconservation.com/education.
PORT PERRY – March 15, 2017 – Natalia Moudrak, Director, Natural Infrastructure Adaptation Program (NIAP), Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation will be the keynote speaker during the Kawartha Conservation Annual General Meeting taking place March 29 at the Port Perry library.
Ms. Moudrak’s keynote presentation titled, “Residential Flood Risk: NOT Adapting is NOT an Option,” will outline the growing costs of extreme weather and flooding, as well as link repeated flooding to elevated risks of mortgage defaults in Canada.
“More and more the communities we serve are impacted by extreme weather, climate change, drought and floods,” said Kawartha Conservation Acting CAO Wanda Stephen. “Ms. Moudrak is a leading industry expert who will talk about the growing need for flood-resiliency work and how global financial audiences are now viewing residential flood risks as one of the greatest economic threats to communities and businesses.”
As a Director of Natural Infrastructure Adaptation Program, Ms. Moudrak advances the development of best practices for building new residential communities in Canada that are more resilient to flooding as well as evaluating the business case for natural infrastructure preservation.
Ms. Moudrak has experience in sustainability strategy, operationalization, reporting and business case development across a wide range of industry sectors and client organizations. Prior to joining the Intact Centre, Ms. Moudrak worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers Canada, Risk Assurance Services.
The public is invited to attend the Annual General Meeting in the Rotary Room of the Port Perry library on March 29 from 4 to 6 p.m.
FEBRUARY 1, 2017 – Boston Pizza has partnered with Kawartha Conservation to provide even greater value for students participating in Kawartha Conservation’s Outdoor Education Programs in 2017.
“Boston Pizza will be generously providing a free kids meal coupon for each student who participates in any of our Outdoor Education classes or programs,” said Nancy Aspden, Coordinator of Environmental Programs and GIS Specialist. “We are thrilled to be able to partner with a local business to provide this extra ‘thank you’ to our education program participants.”
Kawartha Conservation offers nearly 20 different classes and programs for students in Kindergarten to Grades 11 and 12, all in alignment with Ontario’s educational curriculum.
“We’re pleased to be able to partner with Kawartha Conservation on this initiative,” said John Fox, owner of Boston Pizza Lindsay. “Supporting local youth and families is important to us at Boston Pizza, and helping to support students in our community through the great education programs at Ken Reid Conservation Area is a perfect fit.”
Teachers and schools are encouraged to review the different four-season programs and classes offered at Ken Reid Conservation Area by visiting the Education tab on the Kawartha Conservation website at www.kawarthaconservation.com.
JANUARY 30, 2017 – Kawartha Conservation has extended the commenting period for the second draft of the Four Mile Lake Plan until mid-July. The commenting extension is meant to ensure seasonal residents who don’t have access to the revised documents Online can review and comment when they return to the area. An open house will also be held in early June to answer questions about the revised plan.
“We appreciate all of the comments we have received to date regarding the second draft of the Four Mile Lake Plan and would like to thank everyone who took the time to review the community-driven changes reflected in the second draft,” said Dave Pridham, Manager, Conservation Lands, Education and Stewardship Services. “We have been made aware that not all residents or seasonal residents have access to review the documents Online, and it is important we receive everyone’s input. We are also happy to meet individually with anyone who wishes to discuss any aspect of the plan or the lake or watershed study.”
The first draft of the plan was released for public comment in August of 2016 and included open houses in Coboconk and Burnt River.
Draft two of the Plan has taken into consideration all of the feedback Kawartha Conservation received throughout the initial public consultation process.
“The purpose of Plan is to summarize the ecological state of the watershed and to provide advice for lake stakeholders on how to maintain excellent water quality, recreational enjoyment, fish and wildlife populations, and monitoring on Four Mile Lake,” said Aquatic Biologist Brett Tregunno.
Posted on the website at www.KawarthaConservation.com along with the second draft will be an accompanying publication to the Plan entitled the Four Mile Lake Watershed Characterization Report; this provides more detailed technical information on several aspects of the Lake.
JANUARY 25, 2017 – Brock Township Regional Councillor Ted Smith was elected Chair of the Kawartha Conservation Board of Directors during the first meeting of 2017 on Wednesday. Coun. Smith served as vice-chair of the Board previously.
“I have been a member of the Kawartha Conservation Board of Directors for six years and have always admired and appreciated the good work that is done throughout our watershed,” said Coun. Smith. “There are a lot of challenges ahead of us and a lot of important work that will be happening, which I look forward to championing as we move forward.”
Municipality of Trent Lakes’ Peter Raymond was nominated and subsequently acclaimed as vice-chair of the Kawartha Conservation Board of Directors.
Returning to the Board for 2017 is Ron Hooper (Municipality of Clarington), Don Kett (Township of Scugog), Pat Dunn (City of Kawartha Lakes, Gord Miller (City of Kawartha Lakes), Peter Raymond (Municipality of Trent Lakes), Tom Rowett (Township of Scugog) and Jordan Landry (Township of Cavan Monaghan). Newly appointed member Isaac Breadner replaces outgoing member, and past-chair Heather Stauble, as the City of Kawartha Lakes third representative on the Board of Directors.
Kawartha Conservation’s mission is to be leaders in integrated watershed management and conservation with a focus on outstanding water quality and quantity management, supported by healthy landscapes through planning, stewardship, science and education.
January 23, 2017 – A new interactive drought map for the Kawartha Conservation watershed will allow residents and businesses to report areas that are experiencing well issues across the region.
The new tool is part of the Kawartha Water Response Team’s ongoing efforts to educate and inform watershed residents and businesses about low water conditions.
Available under ‘Highlights’ on the Kawartha Conservation website homepage (www.kawarthaconservation.com), the public is able to select a general area where their well is located, as well as provide comments, however no personal information is required.
“The interactive mapping tool allows residents and businesses to pinpoint where their wells are located and provide details on the well and problems they are experiencing,” explained Kawartha Conservation hydrologist Iryna Shulyarenko. “The information input both locally, and across the broader region, will provide Conservation Authority staff with greater detail as to what is happening with ground water levels within various locations in our watershed.
The interactive map is already available and has been used by residents and businesses in the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority and Cataraqui Region Conservation Authority watersheds in eastern Ontario.
“This is a great continuation of the interactive mapping which helps provide valuable information about where well issues are occurring across multiple Conservation Authority regions,” said Ms. Iryna Shulyarenko.
Residents and businesses on wells are able to visit the Kawartha Conservation website and select ‘Drought Map’ on the left hand side of the homepage. Once on the mapping tool, users can scroll to different geographic areas and zoom in and out close to their specific location.
Once the user has zoomed to the appropriate area, they can select the ‘User Input’ point from the Smart Editor, click in the desired map area, and add comments before saving.
January 13, 2017 – The freeze thaw cycle that has characterized much of early winter across the Kawartha Conservation watershed, bringing both rain and snow to the region, has helped to improve lake levels and water flows.
On Thursday, January 12, the Kawartha Water Response Team reduced the Level II low water condition declaration for the majority of the watershed to a Level I low water condition.
In the Township of Scugog, where drought conditions during much of 2016 resulted in the most severe Level III low water declaration, mixed precipitation during December and the early parts of January have improved water levels and water flows significantly, resulting in the move to a Level I low water condition.
“Recorded three month precipitation from October to December ranged from 66 percent in the north to 86 percent at Ken Reid Conservation Area,” explained Kawartha Conservation Hydrologist Iryna Shulyarenko. “However, actual December precipitation ranged from 110 percent of average December values in the north to 149 percent of December averages at Ken Reid Conservation Area.
“Our flow indicators for December also show that all of the watershed’s monitoring locations reported flows that are significantly higher than the long-term minimum monthly summer flow,” added Ms. Shulyarenko.
In December, the Pigeon River monitoring station showed flows at 113 percent of the Minimum monthly summer flow, while the Blackstock Creek monitoring station reported flows at 335 percent and Nonquon River, near Port Perry showed flows at 550 percent of the minimum monthly summer flow.
While the increased precipitation is good news for residents and businesses across the Kawartha Conservation watershed, ground water supplies are not likely to be significantly impacted until spring when air temperature returns to the stable above freezing mark.
“Those individuals with very, very shallow wells may notice some improvement, but we are not anticipating much improvement in the ground water supply until spring as the infiltration from melting snow becomes steady,” said Ms. Shulyarenko. “We are continuing to ask residents and businesses to voluntarily reduce their water consumption. Water is a shared resource and every little bit of water conservation will help make a difference for you and your neighbour.”
In response to the impact of the low water conditions on ground water supplies during 2016, Kawartha Conservation, in conjunction with the City of Kawartha Lakes, Farm & Food Care and the Ontario Ministry Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs are hosting a one-day Agricultural drought resilience workshop in Fenelon Falls on Tuesday, January 31.
“We’ve heard from members of our agricultural community about the challenges they have experienced over the last year,” said Ms. Shipclark. “This aim of this workshop is to provide valuable information from a variety of sources to area farmers and landowners. We have put together an agenda that will help address a lot of the questions and provide important and useful information for our agricultural community.”
The cost for the event is $20 and includes lunch. Interested persons must register Online in advance at www.KawarthaConservation.com/agwater or by contacting Kelly Maloney at the City of Kawartha Lakes, 705-324-9411 Ext. 1208.
JANUARY 11, 2017 - Kawartha Conservation has announced the start of its bulk tree seedling sale for spring 2017.
Landowners in the area – rural, agricultural, and shoreline – are invited to choose from a variety of species, along with a new selection of native shrubs that are suitable for shorelines.
The trees and shrubs are 1 to 3 years old and bare root. The prices for tree seedlings range from $0.60 to $1.95 per seedling and are available in units of 25 seedlings.
Holly Shipclark, Kawartha Conservation Stewardship Coordinator, said that there is information included as part of the order form that will help landowners to make informed decisions about which trees to plant for their property type. There is also more detailed information about choosing the right tree available on the Kawartha Conservation Seedling Program page.
“Often, landowners ask about what to plant, where the best planting locations are, and how to plant. By helping them to locate detailed information on plant species and their characteristics, preferred planting sites, and the benefits of each species, we hope to make it easy to decide,” said Ms. Shipclark.
There are a number of benefits to planting trees and shrubs - saving on heating and cooling costs when planted near your home, blocking highway traffic noise, greater privacy, and a higher property value. Environmental benefits include reduced soil erosion, healthier shorelines, more oxygen, less carbon dioxide, additional wildlife habitat, cleaner water, and a healthier watershed.
Over the past 36 years, Kawartha Conservation has helped distribute over 600,000 seedlings across the watershed.
Landowners can find detailed guidelines for selecting the best plants for their properties at www.KawarthaConservation.com/seedling-distribution.
For orders exceeding $250, a payment of 50% is required at least two weeks prior to the pickup date, tentatively scheduled for April 29 & 30, 2017 in Ken Reid Conservation Area (277 Kenrei Rd., Lindsay) and Willowtree Farm at 975 Regional Road 21, Port Perry.