Connecting people with nature in Ontario's Mississippi Valley

MVC: Fisheries Survey

Like to fish? Whether you are constantly searching for that elusive trophy or just taking the family out for a fun day of fishing, your observations and experiences are important to us.

Mississippi Valley Conservation (MVC) has partnered with Queen’s University in a research project titled “Fish, Fisheries, and Water Resources: Adapting to Ontario’s Changing Climate”, and invites you to contribute to this groundbreaking work by completing a survey. Results from this research will allow us to gauge past, present, and future resource use, and to make recommendations that will take into consideration social and economic concerns of resource users in relation to local climate change and adaptation. Working closely with resource users and having a better understanding of their willingness to adapt will enable us to provide sound scientific recommendations and management strategies.

We urge you to take some time and contribute your knowledge to this vital initiative; your participation is important to its success. By submitting your completed survey, you could win a two night stay for four at Tumblehome Lodge on Crotch Lake,.

The survey can be accessed at www.mvc.on.ca/program/Survey.html. A hard copy can be picked up at MVC’s Lanark office on Hwy. 511, or mailed to you by contacting Lucian Marcogliese by e-mail at , or by phone at (613) 961-1529.

Funded by Natural Resources Canada, the fisheries survey is one of four subcomponents of the larger Climate Change and Adaptation project which is currently underway.

The study of fish and water resources is an important component of MVC’s Climate Change Adaptation Plan. Through research and input from multiple stakeholders the plan will identify how we can best respond to our changing local climate. Working with our many partners, MVC will work towards the continued health of the watershed by exploring and developing responsive, integrated resource management solutions.

For more information on the survey or MVC’s climate change adaptation project please contact project coordinator Jackie Oblak at . or visit our website at www.mvc.on.ca.

Nicole Guthrie
Community Relations Coordinator
Mississippi Valley Conservation

4175 Hwy.511, RR#2
Lanark, Ontario K0G 1K0
t. 613.259.2421 ext.225 f. 613.259.3468
e.

Continue reading...

Managing Forest Woodlots : Links

Links for information and assistance for landowners managing forests and woodlots recommended

by OMNR’s Linda Touzin at MVFN lecture January 18, 2007      

MNR-District Offices, Stewardship Coordinators, MNR internet (www.mnr.gov.on.ca)

Ontario Woodlot Association (www.ont-woodlot-assoc.org)

Eastern Ontario Model Forest (www.eomf.on.ca)

Landowner Resource Centre (www.lrconline.com) Ontario Forestry Association (www.oforest.on.ca)Forest Gene Conservation Association (www.fgca.net)

Conservation Ontario (www.conservation-ontario.com   

 The signs of a healthy forest were described by Linda as having a diversity of species appropriate for the eco-site, vigorously growing native trees, ‘forest values’ protected from timber harvest operations, having a variety of types and ages of trees and habitat features while also having demonstrated careful logging practices.”

Continue reading...

Linda Touzin Meets the Challenge for Best Forestry Practices While Protecting the Watershed

Press Release
Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists
January 29, 2007
by Howard Robinson

Linda Touzin Meets the Challenge for Best Forestry Practices While Protecting the Watershed

See Linda’s Recommended Links for information on how to keep your woodlot healthy

Linda Touzin from the MNRThe Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists (MVFN) continued its lecture series of talks related to the “Mississippi Valley Watershed”. On 18rd January the lecture was well attended, by woodlot owners and others, with Linda Touzin presenting valuable and interesting information on “Managing forests to protect the watershed”.
The Mississippi Valley, Ms. Touzin said, has a very high percentage of wooded area compared to other developed parts of Ontario. It must be well managed in order to acquire wood products in a sustainable fashion without severely impacting the environment including our watershed.

There is much evidence of a cleaning effect for streams that pass through forests. It is hard to put a value on streams, wetlands and other kinds of ‘natural capital’. On the other hand it is easy to understand the economic value of woodlands and wood as a natural and renewable resource continues to increase in value.

The Mississippi Valley is in the Mazinaw-Lanark crown forest management unit and is the most southerly such unit in Canada . One third is Crown land and the rest is private. A sustainable harvest is guided by an extensive forestry plan covering a 20 year period with a view looking beyond 100 years. A detailed plan, which may take 2.5 years to produce, includes a lengthy consultation process and public input. Healthy collaboration with all concerned is a key part of the plan, with concerns generally met through guidelines based on science and core values.
While the plan is for a sustainable harvest, the operational plan and ‘silviculture system’ used have many considerations for protection of the environment and its watershed. Road building and logging must avoid damage to the watershed from run off, soil erosion with its excess nutrients and operational degradation. Heavy machinery around the watershed is avoided and a 30 metre minimum buffer is left near watersheds. Depending on the incline to the water and soil type, this buffer is increased.

Most harvesting is done on a partial cutting system where there is a general ‘thinning’ of trees of various ages suitable for wood products. The forest is left to regenerate with an ‘acceptable growing stock’ i.e. mix of age and trees known to help improve the forest and value of the resource. Danger trees may be taken down but care is also taken to identify all ‘forest values’ such as nesting sites, cold-water streams, vernal pools, or rare species which will be left with a ‘no-cut’ buffer. Harvesting is not done during the nesting season. Clear cutting done over ~ 17% of the area currently, involves primarily short life tree types that may be predominant in an area (e.g. Birch) and which will regenerate.

Linda demonstrated her excellent knowledge and experience as a Registered Professional Forester and answered many good questions from both MVFN members and others interested in private woodlot management. Linda stressed that sustainable forest management can be practiced by private landowners using the same best practices used by OMNR on crown lands. The information and tools are readily available and with public involvement in public processes we can all make a difference.

The signs of a healthy forest were described as having a diversity of species appropriate for the eco-site, vigorously growing native trees, forest values protected from timber harvest operations, having a variety of types and ages of trees and habitat features while also having demonstrated careful logging practices.

Finally, Linda advised those with wood lots to KEEP THEM, walk through all corners of your property making an inventory, keep good species, remove exotics, and whenever and wherever possible increase your woodlot or connect it with others. Make a plan for your woodlot and then choose consultants and tree markers accordingly, based on your plan and what you value most in your woodlot.

If you want to know how to keep a woodlot healthy or where landowners can turn for help, Linda’s recommended links are posted on MVFN’s website at www.mvfn.ca.

MVFN’s lecture series continues Thursday February 15th with Paul Hamilton of the Canadian Museum of Nature who will discuss “Water Quality”, 7:30 p.m. at the Almonte United Church, 106 Elgin Street in Almonte.

For more information please contact Joyce Clinton at 613-257-4879 or , or visit www.mvfn.ca.

Continue reading...

Seeing Both Forest and Trees Focus of Naturalists Presentation

Press Release
Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists
Submitted by Cliff Bennett
Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2004

Seeing Both Forest and Trees Focus of Naturalists Presentation

Ontario Forest“There are no experts on biodiversity of forests but there are many highly specialized persons who study little pieces of the puzzle” stated noted forest researcher and author Dr. Brian Naylor, at the monthly meeting of the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists, held at Almonte United Church on Thursday, Nov. 19.

Naylor, who works for the Ontario Ministry Of Natural Resources out of North Bay, went on to unfold many of the mysteries of forest life and how the puzzle pieces all fits together.

Noting the importance of being able to see both the forest and the individual trees and all of the relationships surrounding trees, Dr. Naylor delved into the more intricate variety and variability among the living species and environmental aspects related to each species. Noting there is infinite genetic diversity within at least 50,000 species of life forms to be considered in a forest, Naylor explained how ecosystems are studied to bring balance into forest products harvesting. “We can harvest wood products and not disrupt biodiversity’ concluded Naylor, “but we have to be very smart about it”.

Introduced by MVFN Director Franziska von Rosen, Dr. Naylor responded to a variety of questions from the large audience. He was thanked by MVFN Director Jim Bendell and presented with a gift basket of local herbal products. Also at this meeting, MVFN President Michael MacPherson announced MVFN had received a $15,000 grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation which will ensure stable funding over the next three years to bring environmental education to schools and youth groups within our membership area.

MVFN Programme Chair Tine Kuiper announced the next presentation in the series on biodiversity. This event will be held on Thursday, January 20 and will feature Biodiversity in the insect world with noted Agriculture Canada entomologist Dr. Henri Goulet.

Continue reading...

Wild Turkey Session Spawns Controversy

Press Release
Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists
Submitted by Cliff Bennett
January 18, 2004

Wild Turkey Session Spawns Controversy  

{wp-gallery-remote: gallery=0; rootalbum=1442; showalbumtitle=true; showsubalbums=false; showimagesheader=false; imagefilter=include:667;}
(Photo by: Tine Kuiper)

Several key issues emerged during question period following a presentation on the re-introduction of wild turkeys in Eastern Ontario at the monthly meeting of the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists, Thursday, Jan. 15 in Almonte. Guest presenter, videographer Franziska vonRosen, showed her noted Pinegrove Productions video entitled Reintroducing the Wild Turkey and MNR wild turkey specialist Scott Smithers followed up with a power-point presentation on the current status of the huge game bird in Lanark County and area.

Introduced by MVFN host for the evening Al Potvin, vonRosen told of the making of the video, indicating key features. She noted the drive to reintroduce wild turkeys to the area came from the Ontario Anglers and Hunters, supported by local fish and game clubs and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. The initial purpose was to provide a game bird for hunting purposes.

Following the viewing of the video, Smithers presented copious statistics on the populations of wild turkeys in different areas leading up to the controversy related to the fact that, due to the success of the population growth, the birds have become a nuisance to farmers because of crop damage.

In the lively discussions following the presentations, a Rosetta farmer asked why farmers have to bear the brunt of the cost of damage to their crops all because some hunters want a new hunting experience. He indicated farmers are already suffering heavily from deer and Canada goose population explosions. In answer to another controversial question, Smithers indicated there was no historical evidence that wild turkeys existed in Lanark County prior to 1992 when the first ones were set loose, making the term re-introduction a misnomer.

After the quest speakers were thanked and presented with a gift of local honey products by Michael MacPherson and Jim Bendell, the discussions continued over refreshments. In the end, the protagonists agreed to disagree but all agreed there is a growing problem with wild turkeys and MNR has to act positively and soon, to remediate the situation.

The February 19 meeting of MVFN will feature a presentation on the black rat snake, which is on the endangered species list. Guest speaker will be MNR Biologist Shawn Thompson. For information about MVFN and its programmes, log on to mvfn.ca

Continue reading...