Issuu on Google+

The Lake Simcoe Watershed LAKE SIMCOE SUBWATERSHEDS AND ISLANDS 1. Barrie Creeks 2. Beaver River 3. Black River 4. East Holland River 5. Fox Island 6. Georgina Creeks 7. Georgina Island 8. Hawkestone Creek 9. Hewitt’s Creek 10. Innisfil Creeks 11. Lovers Creek 12. Maskinonge River 13. Oro Creeks North 14. Oro Creeks South 15. Pefferlaw River 16. Ramara Creeks

What You Can Do Be a Watershed Steward! • A simple step every property owner can take – Don’t mow to the edge of ditches, streams, and river banks. You’ll restore a natural grass and plant filter which will absorb pollutants before they enter the water and will protect against soil erosion! • Plant native trees and shrubs on your property to increase wildlife habitat and maintain a healthy ecosystem.

Where We Are We are one of 36 Conservation Authorities across Ontario under the umbrella organization of Conservation Ontario.

Lake Simcoe

WATERSHED

Report Card 2013

• Regularly maintain your septic system. • Switch to phosphorus-free fertilizers for your lawn and garden.

What Does This Report Card Measure?

• Connect with community and municipal programs.

17. Snake Island 18. Talbot River 19. Thorah Island 20. West Holland River 21. Whites Creek

The Lake Simcoe watershed is a vibrant and diverse habitat and a precious source of water. It’s also a centre for tourism and recreation - generating over $200 million annually for the local economy - as well as industry and agriculture. Our lives and that of its animals, plants and insects rely on its health. A healthy watershed supports healthy communities. The Lake Simcoe watershed sweeps across 3,400 square kilometres and 20 municipal borders, from the Oak Ridges Moraine in the south to the Oro Moraine in the north, through York and Durham regions, Simcoe County and the cities of Kawartha Lakes, Barrie and Orillia. The lake itself covers 20 percent of the area and provides a source of safe drinking water to seven municipalities. There are over 400,000 residents in the watershed; 18 major river systems; 4,225 kilometres of creek, stream and tributary channels; and it’s home to 75 species of fish, with over 50 in the lake alone.

• Visit the Ontario Ministry of the Environment website to learn about My Actions, Our Lake Simcoe at www.ontario.ca/lakesimcoe.

Surface Water Quality

• Find out about our Landowner Environmental Assistance Program (LEAP) at www.LSRCA.on.ca/leap. Funding may be available for environmental projects on your property.

In addition to our extensive monitoring activities, we also lead and support many other programs and projects in science and research, protection and restoration, and education and engagement. This Watershed Report Card has been developed to share the findings of our analyses for the five year period from 2007-2011. The indicators represent a number of commonly monitored parameters used to indicate changes in the environment. The standards used in this report card were developed by Conservation Authorities to ensure consistent reporting on the health of watersheds across the province.

Groundwater Quality

Why Measure? Measuring helps us better understand our watershed. It helps us to focus our efforts where they are needed most and track progress. It also helps us to identify healthy and ecologically important areas that require protection or enhancement.

• Make a donation to our funding partner, the Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation at www.LakeSimcoeFoundation.ca. • Follow these tips and collect others!

What is a Watershed?

• Visit www.LSRCA.on.ca for more information about our Watershed Report Card.

A watershed is an area of land drained by a river or stream. Similar to the branch of a tree, creeks empty into streams, which then empty into larger streams, eventually forming one main trunk, or river. In our watershed, all of these rivers ultimately drain into Lake Simcoe.

What We Are Doing The Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority (LSRCA) works with many partners, including our communities and municipal, provincial and federal governments, year-round to provide the best scientific information on the health of the watershed and to support programs for its protection and restoration. Lake and tributary monitoring is an essential part of our efforts. Our monitoring program includes measuring water quality parameters in both surface and ground water, surveying fish and aquatic insect populations, measuring water temperatures, monitoring water levels and flows, and tracking changing land uses.

Forest Conditions

Within this system, everything is connected to everything else. In other words, actions which take place at the top of the system can and do affect those downstream.

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority 120 Bayview Parkway, Newmarket, Ontario L3Y 3W3 P: (905) 895-1281 F: (905) 853-5881 E: info@LSRCA.on.ca www.LSRCA.on.ca

We would like to acknowledge the financial support of our communities and municipal, provincial and federal partners. If you require this document in an alternative format, please contact us. Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority has prepared this report card as a summary on the state of our forests, surface water, and groundwater resources.

Grading A Excellent B Good C Fair D Poor F Very Poor

The standards used in this report card were developed by Conservation Authorities to ensure consistent reporting across the Province of Ontario and are intended to provide watershed residents with information to protect, enhance and improve the precious resources that surround us.


The Lake Simcoe Watershed LAKE SIMCOE SUBWATERSHEDS AND ISLANDS 1. Barrie Creeks 2. Beaver River 3. Black River 4. East Holland River 5. Fox Island 6. Georgina Creeks 7. Georgina Island 8. Hawkestone Creek 9. Hewitt’s Creek 10. Innisfil Creeks 11. Lovers Creek 12. Maskinonge River 13. Oro Creeks North 14. Oro Creeks South 15. Pefferlaw River 16. Ramara Creeks

What You Can Do Be a Watershed Steward! • A simple step every property owner can take – Don’t mow to the edge of ditches, streams, and river banks. You’ll restore a natural grass and plant filter which will absorb pollutants before they enter the water and will protect against soil erosion! • Plant native trees and shrubs on your property to increase wildlife habitat and maintain a healthy ecosystem.

Where We Are We are one of 36 Conservation Authorities across Ontario under the umbrella organization of Conservation Ontario.

Lake Simcoe

WATERSHED

Report Card 2013

• Regularly maintain your septic system. • Switch to phosphorus-free fertilizers for your lawn and garden.

What Does This Report Card Measure?

• Connect with community and municipal programs.

17. Snake Island 18. Talbot River 19. Thorah Island 20. West Holland River 21. Whites Creek

The Lake Simcoe watershed is a vibrant and diverse habitat and a precious source of water. It’s also a centre for tourism and recreation - generating over $200 million annually for the local economy - as well as industry and agriculture. Our lives and that of its animals, plants and insects rely on its health. A healthy watershed supports healthy communities. The Lake Simcoe watershed sweeps across 3,400 square kilometres and 20 municipal borders, from the Oak Ridges Moraine in the south to the Oro Moraine in the north, through York and Durham regions, Simcoe County and the cities of Kawartha Lakes, Barrie and Orillia. The lake itself covers 20 percent of the area and provides a source of safe drinking water to seven municipalities. There are over 400,000 residents in the watershed; 18 major river systems; 4,225 kilometres of creek, stream and tributary channels; and it’s home to 75 species of fish, with over 50 in the lake alone.

• Visit the Ontario Ministry of the Environment website to learn about My Actions, Our Lake Simcoe at www.ontario.ca/lakesimcoe.

Surface Water Quality

• Find out about our Landowner Environmental Assistance Program (LEAP) at www.LSRCA.on.ca/leap. Funding may be available for environmental projects on your property.

In addition to our extensive monitoring activities, we also lead and support many other programs and projects in science and research, protection and restoration, and education and engagement. This Watershed Report Card has been developed to share the findings of our analyses for the five year period from 2007-2011. The indicators represent a number of commonly monitored parameters used to indicate changes in the environment. The standards used in this report card were developed by Conservation Authorities to ensure consistent reporting on the health of watersheds across the province.

Groundwater Quality

Why Measure? Measuring helps us better understand our watershed. It helps us to focus our efforts where they are needed most and track progress. It also helps us to identify healthy and ecologically important areas that require protection or enhancement.

• Make a donation to our funding partner, the Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation at www.LakeSimcoeFoundation.ca. • Follow these tips and collect others!

What is a Watershed?

• Visit www.LSRCA.on.ca for more information about our Watershed Report Card.

A watershed is an area of land drained by a river or stream. Similar to the branch of a tree, creeks empty into streams, which then empty into larger streams, eventually forming one main trunk, or river. In our watershed, all of these rivers ultimately drain into Lake Simcoe.

What We Are Doing The Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority (LSRCA) works with many partners, including our communities and municipal, provincial and federal governments, year-round to provide the best scientific information on the health of the watershed and to support programs for its protection and restoration. Lake and tributary monitoring is an essential part of our efforts. Our monitoring program includes measuring water quality parameters in both surface and ground water, surveying fish and aquatic insect populations, measuring water temperatures, monitoring water levels and flows, and tracking changing land uses.

Forest Conditions

Within this system, everything is connected to everything else. In other words, actions which take place at the top of the system can and do affect those downstream.

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority 120 Bayview Parkway, Newmarket, Ontario L3Y 3W3 P: (905) 895-1281 F: (905) 853-5881 E: info@LSRCA.on.ca www.LSRCA.on.ca

We would like to acknowledge the financial support of our communities and municipal, provincial and federal partners. If you require this document in an alternative format, please contact us. Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority has prepared this report card as a summary on the state of our forests, surface water, and groundwater resources.

Grading A Excellent B Good C Fair D Poor F Very Poor

The standards used in this report card were developed by Conservation Authorities to ensure consistent reporting across the Province of Ontario and are intended to provide watershed residents with information to protect, enhance and improve the precious resources that surround us.


The Lake Simcoe Watershed LAKE SIMCOE SUBWATERSHEDS AND ISLANDS 1. Barrie Creeks 2. Beaver River 3. Black River 4. East Holland River 5. Fox Island 6. Georgina Creeks 7. Georgina Island 8. Hawkestone Creek 9. Hewitt’s Creek 10. Innisfil Creeks 11. Lovers Creek 12. Maskinonge River 13. Oro Creeks North 14. Oro Creeks South 15. Pefferlaw River 16. Ramara Creeks

What You Can Do Be a Watershed Steward! • A simple step every property owner can take – Don’t mow to the edge of ditches, streams, and river banks. You’ll restore a natural grass and plant filter which will absorb pollutants before they enter the water and will protect against soil erosion! • Plant native trees and shrubs on your property to increase wildlife habitat and maintain a healthy ecosystem.

Where We Are We are one of 36 Conservation Authorities across Ontario under the umbrella organization of Conservation Ontario.

Lake Simcoe

WATERSHED

Report Card 2013

• Regularly maintain your septic system. • Switch to phosphorus-free fertilizers for your lawn and garden.

What Does This Report Card Measure?

• Connect with community and municipal programs.

17. Snake Island 18. Talbot River 19. Thorah Island 20. West Holland River 21. Whites Creek

The Lake Simcoe watershed is a vibrant and diverse habitat and a precious source of water. It’s also a centre for tourism and recreation - generating over $200 million annually for the local economy - as well as industry and agriculture. Our lives and that of its animals, plants and insects rely on its health. A healthy watershed supports healthy communities. The Lake Simcoe watershed sweeps across 3,400 square kilometres and 20 municipal borders, from the Oak Ridges Moraine in the south to the Oro Moraine in the north, through York and Durham regions, Simcoe County and the cities of Kawartha Lakes, Barrie and Orillia. The lake itself covers 20 percent of the area and provides a source of safe drinking water to seven municipalities. There are over 400,000 residents in the watershed; 18 major river systems; 4,225 kilometres of creek, stream and tributary channels; and it’s home to 75 species of fish, with over 50 in the lake alone.

• Visit the Ontario Ministry of the Environment website to learn about My Actions, Our Lake Simcoe at www.ontario.ca/lakesimcoe.

Surface Water Quality

• Find out about our Landowner Environmental Assistance Program (LEAP) at www.LSRCA.on.ca/leap. Funding may be available for environmental projects on your property.

In addition to our extensive monitoring activities, we also lead and support many other programs and projects in science and research, protection and restoration, and education and engagement. This Watershed Report Card has been developed to share the findings of our analyses for the five year period from 2007-2011. The indicators represent a number of commonly monitored parameters used to indicate changes in the environment. The standards used in this report card were developed by Conservation Authorities to ensure consistent reporting on the health of watersheds across the province.

Groundwater Quality

Why Measure? Measuring helps us better understand our watershed. It helps us to focus our efforts where they are needed most and track progress. It also helps us to identify healthy and ecologically important areas that require protection or enhancement.

• Make a donation to our funding partner, the Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation at www.LakeSimcoeFoundation.ca. • Follow these tips and collect others!

What is a Watershed?

• Visit www.LSRCA.on.ca for more information about our Watershed Report Card.

A watershed is an area of land drained by a river or stream. Similar to the branch of a tree, creeks empty into streams, which then empty into larger streams, eventually forming one main trunk, or river. In our watershed, all of these rivers ultimately drain into Lake Simcoe.

What We Are Doing The Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority (LSRCA) works with many partners, including our communities and municipal, provincial and federal governments, year-round to provide the best scientific information on the health of the watershed and to support programs for its protection and restoration. Lake and tributary monitoring is an essential part of our efforts. Our monitoring program includes measuring water quality parameters in both surface and ground water, surveying fish and aquatic insect populations, measuring water temperatures, monitoring water levels and flows, and tracking changing land uses.

Forest Conditions

Within this system, everything is connected to everything else. In other words, actions which take place at the top of the system can and do affect those downstream.

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority 120 Bayview Parkway, Newmarket, Ontario L3Y 3W3 P: (905) 895-1281 F: (905) 853-5881 E: info@LSRCA.on.ca www.LSRCA.on.ca

We would like to acknowledge the financial support of our communities and municipal, provincial and federal partners. If you require this document in an alternative format, please contact us. Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority has prepared this report card as a summary on the state of our forests, surface water, and groundwater resources.

Grading A Excellent B Good C Fair D Poor F Very Poor

The standards used in this report card were developed by Conservation Authorities to ensure consistent reporting across the Province of Ontario and are intended to provide watershed residents with information to protect, enhance and improve the precious resources that surround us.


Surface Water Quality

Forest Conditions

The Lake

Groundwater Quality

Phosphorus Concentration, μg/L

<10 10-15 15-20 20-25 Grading

Grading

A Excellent

A Excellent

B Good

B Good

C Fair

C Fair

D Poor

D Poor

F

F

Very Poor Insufficient Data

Very Poor

Grading

Aquifer Depth Shallow Intermediate Deep

A Excellent B Good

μg/L = micrograms per litre

C Fair

D Poor

F Very Poor

LEGEND NOTE: (*) Grades assessed using phosphorus concentrations only; insufficient benthic invertebrate data.

Grades for Surface Water Quality are based on two parameters in the Lake Simcoe watershed: • Concentration of phosphorus, a naturally occurring nutrient prevalent throughout Ontario watersheds. At high concentrations, phosphorus contributes to the excessive growth of aquatic plants and algae. • Benthic invertebrate communities — mostly aquatic insects. Different species require specific habitat conditions, making them excellent indicators of aquatic health. Our monitoring results indicate how land use changes and composition affect surface water quality throughout the watershed. The lowest grades (C to D) occurred in the subwatersheds that are more heavily impacted by human activity, such as the East Holland and Maskinonge Rivers, and Barrie, Hewitt’s, and Ramara Creeks. These land uses contribute phosphorus to watercourses and can cause changes to stream habitat that negatively affect the benthic invertebrate community. The healthiest water quality (A grade) was found in the Hawkestone Creek subwatershed as it has the highest levels of natural cover.

The Forest Conditions indicator is evaluated on: • the percentage of wooded area in a subwatershed; • the percentage of interior forest — that is, the most densely wooded area found 100 metres in from the outside edge — which is critical habitat for some sensitive species; and, • the amount of riparian zone, a 30m buffer area along all watercourses, that is forested. These areas provide vital habitat, improve water quality, stabilize soils, and provide locations for rain and snowmelt to soak into the ground and replenish groundwater aquifers, the underground layer of water. Forest conditions varies widely across the watershed with grades ranging from A to D. The majority of our subwatersheds scored a grade in the B to C range. While these subwatersheds have some areas with high levels of natural cover, they also contain areas impacted by human activity where forest cover has been removed and/or fragmented. The best overall forest conditions were recorded in the Hawkestone Creek subwatershed and Georgina Island; both scoring an A grade. These areas contain high levels of forest cover and forest interior and much of their riparian buffers remain intact.

Groundwater quality grades are determined by analyzing the concentrations of nitrate + nitrite and chloride. Elevated concentrations may indicate contamination from sources such as winter salt (chloride), agriculture, and septic systems (nitrate and nitrite). LSRCA monitors groundwater quality in 14 wells classified as shallow, intermediate, or deep. Generally, the deeper the well, the more likely it is to be protected by overlying soils that restrict the flow of groundwater (these are referred to as aquitards), providing a higher level of protection from surface contaminants. Overall, the results were good with most wells scoring an A grade. Four shallow wells located near roads scored Bs and Cs, as a result of elevated chloride concentrations. These B and C grades alone, do not indicate a concern about drinking water, as the contamination often remains close to the source; however, because shallow groundwater is often what feeds area streams, there is the potential that elevated chloride concentrations could affect stream health. Our results show no concerns with respect to nitrate + nitrite.

The LSRCA Lake Science Program uses a variety of indicators to assess the environmental health of Lake Simcoe: water and sediment samples are collected and analyzed for chemicals and nutrients; dissolved oxygen levels are recorded to track changes in deepwater fish habitat; and different species of lake organisms track the changing health of lake habitats. The map above reports the results from one aspect of our lake science - concentration of total phosphorus measured in monthly water samples since 2008. The size of each circle indicates the average phosphorus concentration at each site; the smallest size representing our phosphorus target of 10 μg/L (based on provincial water quality objective). While phosphorus concentration overall is still above this goal, especially in Cook’s Bay (average 20 μg/L ), other areas are closer (Kempenfelt Bay and Main Basin average 13.1 μg/L ) and all areas have seen improvement since the 1980s when average phosphorus concentration was 20-30 μg/L . We are using this phosphorus concentration data along with our other indicators to develop a grading system for Lake Simcoe.


Surface Water Quality

Forest Conditions

The Lake

Groundwater Quality

Phosphorus Concentration, μg/L

<10 10-15 15-20 20-25 Grading

Grading

A Excellent

A Excellent

B Good

B Good

C Fair

C Fair

D Poor

D Poor

F

F

Very Poor Insufficient Data

Very Poor

Grading

Aquifer Depth Shallow Intermediate Deep

A Excellent B Good

μg/L = micrograms per litre

C Fair

D Poor

F Very Poor

LEGEND NOTE: (*) Grades assessed using phosphorus concentrations only; insufficient benthic invertebrate data.

Grades for Surface Water Quality are based on two parameters in the Lake Simcoe watershed: • Concentration of phosphorus, a naturally occurring nutrient prevalent throughout Ontario watersheds. At high concentrations, phosphorus contributes to the excessive growth of aquatic plants and algae. • Benthic invertebrate communities — mostly aquatic insects. Different species require specific habitat conditions, making them excellent indicators of aquatic health. Our monitoring results indicate how land use changes and composition affect surface water quality throughout the watershed. The lowest grades (C to D) occurred in the subwatersheds that are more heavily impacted by human activity, such as the East Holland and Maskinonge Rivers, and Barrie, Hewitt’s, and Ramara Creeks. These land uses contribute phosphorus to watercourses and can cause changes to stream habitat that negatively affect the benthic invertebrate community. The healthiest water quality (A grade) was found in the Hawkestone Creek subwatershed as it has the highest levels of natural cover.

The Forest Conditions indicator is evaluated on: • the percentage of wooded area in a subwatershed; • the percentage of interior forest — that is, the most densely wooded area found 100 metres in from the outside edge — which is critical habitat for some sensitive species; and, • the amount of riparian zone, a 30m buffer area along all watercourses, that is forested. These areas provide vital habitat, improve water quality, stabilize soils, and provide locations for rain and snowmelt to soak into the ground and replenish groundwater aquifers, the underground layer of water. Forest conditions varies widely across the watershed with grades ranging from A to D. The majority of our subwatersheds scored a grade in the B to C range. While these subwatersheds have some areas with high levels of natural cover, they also contain areas impacted by human activity where forest cover has been removed and/or fragmented. The best overall forest conditions were recorded in the Hawkestone Creek subwatershed and Georgina Island; both scoring an A grade. These areas contain high levels of forest cover and forest interior and much of their riparian buffers remain intact.

Groundwater quality grades are determined by analyzing the concentrations of nitrate + nitrite and chloride. Elevated concentrations may indicate contamination from sources such as winter salt (chloride), agriculture, and septic systems (nitrate and nitrite). LSRCA monitors groundwater quality in 14 wells classified as shallow, intermediate, or deep. Generally, the deeper the well, the more likely it is to be protected by overlying soils that restrict the flow of groundwater (these are referred to as aquitards), providing a higher level of protection from surface contaminants. Overall, the results were good with most wells scoring an A grade. Four shallow wells located near roads scored Bs and Cs, as a result of elevated chloride concentrations. These B and C grades alone, do not indicate a concern about drinking water, as the contamination often remains close to the source; however, because shallow groundwater is often what feeds area streams, there is the potential that elevated chloride concentrations could affect stream health. Our results show no concerns with respect to nitrate + nitrite.

The LSRCA Lake Science Program uses a variety of indicators to assess the environmental health of Lake Simcoe: water and sediment samples are collected and analyzed for chemicals and nutrients; dissolved oxygen levels are recorded to track changes in deepwater fish habitat; and different species of lake organisms track the changing health of lake habitats. The map above reports the results from one aspect of our lake science - concentration of total phosphorus measured in monthly water samples since 2008. The size of each circle indicates the average phosphorus concentration at each site; the smallest size representing our phosphorus target of 10 μg/L (based on provincial water quality objective). While phosphorus concentration overall is still above this goal, especially in Cook’s Bay (average 20 μg/L ), other areas are closer (Kempenfelt Bay and Main Basin average 13.1 μg/L ) and all areas have seen improvement since the 1980s when average phosphorus concentration was 20-30 μg/L . We are using this phosphorus concentration data along with our other indicators to develop a grading system for Lake Simcoe.


The Lake Simcoe Watershed LAKE SIMCOE SUBWATERSHEDS AND ISLANDS 1. Barrie Creeks 2. Beaver River 3. Black River 4. East Holland River 5. Fox Island 6. Georgina Creeks 7. Georgina Island 8. Hawkestone Creek 9. Hewitt’s Creek 10. Innisfil Creeks 11. Lovers Creek 12. Maskinonge River 13. Oro Creeks North 14. Oro Creeks South 15. Pefferlaw River 16. Ramara Creeks

What You Can Do Be a Watershed Steward! • A simple step every property owner can take – Don’t mow to the edge of ditches, streams, and river banks. You’ll restore a natural grass and plant filter which will absorb pollutants before they enter the water and will protect against soil erosion! • Plant native trees and shrubs on your property to increase wildlife habitat and maintain a healthy ecosystem.

Where We Are We are one of 36 Conservation Authorities across Ontario under the umbrella organization of Conservation Ontario.

Lake Simcoe

WATERSHED

Report Card 2013

• Regularly maintain your septic system. • Switch to phosphorus-free fertilizers for your lawn and garden.

What Does This Report Card Measure?

• Connect with community and municipal programs.

17. Snake Island 18. Talbot River 19. Thorah Island 20. West Holland River 21. Whites Creek

The Lake Simcoe watershed is a vibrant and diverse habitat and a precious source of water. It’s also a centre for tourism and recreation - generating over $200 million annually for the local economy - as well as industry and agriculture. Our lives and that of its animals, plants and insects rely on its health. A healthy watershed supports healthy communities. The Lake Simcoe watershed sweeps across 3,400 square kilometres and 20 municipal borders, from the Oak Ridges Moraine in the south to the Oro Moraine in the north, through York and Durham regions, Simcoe County and the cities of Kawartha Lakes, Barrie and Orillia. The lake itself covers 20 percent of the area and provides a source of safe drinking water to seven municipalities. There are over 400,000 residents in the watershed; 18 major river systems; 4,225 kilometres of creek, stream and tributary channels; and it’s home to 75 species of fish, with over 50 in the lake alone.

• Visit the Ontario Ministry of the Environment website to learn about My Actions, Our Lake Simcoe at www.ontario.ca/lakesimcoe.

Surface Water Quality

• Find out about our Landowner Environmental Assistance Program (LEAP) at www.LSRCA.on.ca/leap. Funding may be available for environmental projects on your property.

In addition to our extensive monitoring activities, we also lead and support many other programs and projects in science and research, protection and restoration, and education and engagement. This Watershed Report Card has been developed to share the findings of our analyses for the five year period from 2007-2011. The indicators represent a number of commonly monitored parameters used to indicate changes in the environment. The standards used in this report card were developed by Conservation Authorities to ensure consistent reporting on the health of watersheds across the province.

Groundwater Quality

Why Measure? Measuring helps us better understand our watershed. It helps us to focus our efforts where they are needed most and track progress. It also helps us to identify healthy and ecologically important areas that require protection or enhancement.

• Make a donation to our funding partner, the Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation at www.LakeSimcoeFoundation.ca. • Follow these tips and collect others!

What is a Watershed?

• Visit www.LSRCA.on.ca for more information about our Watershed Report Card.

A watershed is an area of land drained by a river or stream. Similar to the branch of a tree, creeks empty into streams, which then empty into larger streams, eventually forming one main trunk, or river. In our watershed, all of these rivers ultimately drain into Lake Simcoe.

What We Are Doing The Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority (LSRCA) works with many partners, including our communities and municipal, provincial and federal governments, year-round to provide the best scientific information on the health of the watershed and to support programs for its protection and restoration. Lake and tributary monitoring is an essential part of our efforts. Our monitoring program includes measuring water quality parameters in both surface and ground water, surveying fish and aquatic insect populations, measuring water temperatures, monitoring water levels and flows, and tracking changing land uses.

Forest Conditions

Within this system, everything is connected to everything else. In other words, actions which take place at the top of the system can and do affect those downstream.

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority 120 Bayview Parkway, Newmarket, Ontario L3Y 3W3 P: (905) 895-1281 F: (905) 853-5881 E: info@LSRCA.on.ca www.LSRCA.on.ca

We would like to acknowledge the financial support of our communities and municipal, provincial and federal partners. If you require this document in an alternative format, please contact us. Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority has prepared this report card as a summary on the state of our forests, surface water, and groundwater resources.

Grading A Excellent B Good C Fair D Poor F Very Poor

The standards used in this report card were developed by Conservation Authorities to ensure consistent reporting across the Province of Ontario and are intended to provide watershed residents with information to protect, enhance and improve the precious resources that surround us.


Lake Simcoe Watershed Report Card