3rd Annual Kawartha Farm Stewardship Workshop

The Kawartha Farm Stewardship Collaborative (KFSC) invites farmers and rural landowners to attend the 3rd Annual Kawartha Farm Stewardship Workshop on Saturday February 7, 2015 at Rolling Hills Public School in Bethany (20 minutes west of Peterborough). The event is designed to celebrate the stewardship achievements of the past year, and to inform the farming public about the resources available to support on-farm stewardship.

This full-day workshop will feature presentations by farmers and industry professionals on topics such as: practical strategies for reducing neonicotinoid use (Greg Stewart, OMAFRA); creative options and solutions for livestock watering; the benefits of wetlands and biofilters in farm drainage; the 4R’s of nutrient stewardship; as well as the various sources of funding and technical support available to farmers across the region from KFSC partners.

Tickets to the event, which include a hot lunch, are $25/person. Pre-registration is required, and those who sign up before January 19 will receive a complementary satellite map of their farm property. Door prizes will include 10 chances to win $100 towards on-farm soil testing.

For full registration details, visit
www.kawarthafarmstewardship.org. For more information, please contact Holly Shipclark: (705) 328-2271 x 240 | hshipclark@kawarthaconservation.com.

The KFSC consists of eleven local and provincial partner organizations (Bay of Quinte Remedial Action Plan, Ducks Unlimited Canada, Farms at Work, Ganaraska Region Conservation, Kawartha Conservation, Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority, Lower Trent Conservation, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association, Otonabee Conservation, and the Peterborough County Stewardship Council) that work together to assist the agricultural communities of east central Ontario in carrying out on-farm environmental projects and stewardship. For more information on the KFSC, please visit


GRCA Offers Several Funding Options to Assist with Tree Planting

In the 2014 tree planting season, over 30,000 trees were planted across the local watershed with assistance from the Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority (GRCA). The GRCA is encouraging landowners to start thinking about tree planting for the 2015 season. It is never too early to start planning!

Trees provide many benefits to the local ecosystem by increasing woodland connectivity, creating and enhancing wildlife habitat and often act as a buffer and filtration system for stromwater runoff before it gets into the water. Trees also enhance the natural beauty of the watershed for residents to appreciate and enjoy. There are many ways to incorporate tree planting on your property, including:

• Establishing windbreaks to help reduce home heating costs, or shade trees to reduce home cooling costs. Windbreaks can also help control snow drifting.
• Re-establishing large scale reforestation on marginal land to increase wildlife habitat, or provide future additional income through timber management or other forest resources.
• Increasing forest connectivity by planting in areas that will increase and enhance existing forest or woodlots.
• Enhancing stream banks and river valleys by planting species that stabilize banks, increase stream shading, create habitat and reduce runoff.

There are several options available through the GRCA when considering tree planting depending on your needs. The GRCA offers the purchase of tree seedlings at a minimum bundle of 25 to plant at your own leisure, or have the GRCA plant the trees for you if there are over 500.

Funding is available to assist in the purchase and/or planting of tree seedlings.  The Clean Water – Healthy Land Financial Assistance Program offers funding of 50% of the cost of a minimum of 500 seedlings to a maximum of $2,500.00. Additional funding is also available to landowners planting more than 1 hectare or 2.5 acres of land.

The GRCA has also partnered with the Municipality of Clarington, Central Lake Ontario Conservation Authority and the Municipality of Port Hope again for 2015 to provide free trees to Clarington and Port Hope residents to plant along the rural road side on their property. The goal is to restore the trees that once lined rural roads, an initiative that was started in the 1870s across the province – check out the Trees for Rural Roads Program for 2015!

If you want to avoid winter this year, spend some time planning for a spring 2015 tree plant project with help from the Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority.

For more information on how you can participate in the 2015 tree seedling program or funding programs, contact Kestrel Wraggett, Stewardship Technician at 905-885-8173 x 247 or kwraggett@grca.on.ca.


Holiday Planning with the Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority

With the holidays just around the corner and thoughts of what to get that special someone on everyone’s mind, the Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority (GRCA) has some unique gift giving ideas to help you get prepared. 

Does your special someone like to cross-country ski, hike, or mountain bike?  Why not give them with an annual membership to the Ganaraska Forest? Multiple different membership levels are available that provide a pass into the magnificent forest, where visitors can take advantage of the many recreational activities. The GRCA suggests that people of all ages take the time to be active year-round; keep busy with physical activities and lead by example with hikes, skiing, and other outdoor adventures. 

For a small donation, you can present your loved one with a tree that will be planted in the Ganaraska Forest. You will be provided with a framed tree certificate acknowledging the individual in honour or memory. This one-of-a-kind gift expresses your consideration towards the environment, provides wildlife habitat, and increases forest connectivity by adding to the existing 11,000 acre Ganaraska Forest.

Does your loved one have a special connection to the environment? Present them with an 8x8 paver stone engraved with their name or a special message.  The stones line the entrance way to the Ganaraska Forest Outdoor Education Centre located in the heart of the Ganaraska Forest. This personalized tribute will be a gift that lasts for years to come.

Looking for a unique stocking stuffer? A rain gauge is a great idea! The recipient will then have the opportunity to track our local precipitation patterns.

Please call us for information on the multi-use Ganaraska Forest Centre, to take advantage of these one-of-a-kind gift ideas, or to learn more on how you can support you local Conservation Authority.

Rocky Ramp Improves Local Fish Passage

The Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority (GRCA), in partnership with the County of Northumberland and Floatfishing.net Conservation Group, and through funding provided by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, completed a project to improve fish passage over perched culvert on the west branch of Cobourg Creek at Dale Road. The project involved mitigating a 20” drop that was a partial barrier to upstream fish passage, particularly to non-jumping fish species. “This project will help improve fish passage, resulting in an improvement to the health of the fish community within Cobourg Creek,” states Brian Morrison, GRCA Fisheries Biologist.

In the summer of 2014, the GRCA and the County of Northumberland completed the construction of a rocky ramp fishway at the dam. A rocky ramp fishway is a layer of rock placed over the obstruction in a manner that resembles natural riffle and pool features. The project allows for unimpeded upstream fish access to approximately 40km2 km of additional high quality stream habitat. Shortly after completing the project, several different species of fish were observed using the rocky ramp to access upstream habitats.  This project supports the 2010 rocky ramp that was constructed downstream to enhance fish access within the west branch of Cobourg Creek.


Union Gas and GRCA partner to protect Ganaraska River

With a $2,000.00 grant generously donated by Union Gas and the help of Union Gas employees, the Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority planted approximately 250 Spruce and Tamarack trees along the east shore of the Ganaraska River just North of Port Hope yesterday. The river runs under Dale Road, a highway with fairly heavy traffic and the trees will contribute to the filtering of water runoff from the urban environment, including Dale Road, before it gets discharged into the river. The planting will also provide shade and habitat to critical cold water fish species.

The Ganaraska River drains a total area of 278 square kilometers (km2). The main branch of the Ganaraska River is joined by 10 other tributaries; the largest being the North Ganaraska Branch. Protection of the Ganaraska River watershed has been influenced by surface water studies such as floodplain mapping and hydraulic studies. Regulations are also in place to protect people and property from flood waters, such as the flood that occurred in 1980, and to protect the natural features of the watershed. Flows in the Ganaraska River are generally resilient to stresses such as drought and water use, and adequately provide for aquatic habitat and human use. However, currently the river is at risk of erosion due to the lack of trees and planting the trees along the shore will help stabilize the bank and reduce erosion.

“We care about the environment. The nature of Union Gas is reflected in our company culture, whether we are building a pipeline or erecting an energy-efficient office building,” said Ed Gouweloos, Union Gas Utility Services Construction Manager, Cobourg. “That’s why we support important environmental programs in the communities we serve. Planting trees along the Ganaraska River will make a difference, and that is important to us at Union Gas.”

For more information on the Ganaraska River, as well as other important projects the Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority is undertaking in our watershed, please contact the Conservation Authority at 905-885-8173 or visit www.grca.on.ca.

 Ed Gouweloos (Union Gas Utility Services Construction Manager, Cobourg), Linda Laliberte (CAO-Secretary-Treasurer, GRCA) and Forrest Rowden (Chair, GRCA Full Authority)


Birds of Prey in the Ganaraska Forest 

Ganaraska and Trent Source Protection Plan Approved

Planning on Building on the Oak Ridges Moraine? What You Need to Know.

Sampling fish from the watercourses within the Ganaraska Region Conservation Authority are: A Shocking Story


Township of Alnwick Haldimand Township of Cavan Monaghan Clarington Town of Cobourg Region of Durham Hamilton Township Port Hope City of Kawartha Lakes Conservation Ontario
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