Protecting soil, water, and living things happens when people, communities, and agencies work together to create awareness and take positive action. This newsletter is to let you know about grants for your stewardship projects and technical support. It tells people about programs, events, community news, the work of Ausable Bayfield Conservation, the landowners and residents of this watershed and other community partners. This newsletter offers ways you can help improve water quality, improve forest conditions, and wetland cover, conserve water, reduce stormwater runoff, and improve your community by building healthier watersheds. For more information visit

Flood programs help Ontario

Flood forecasting and warning, mitigation projects, flood plain management help prepare Ontario for flood events

Flood program helps to protect life and propertyThe record-setting rainfall and large-scale flooding, that has caused such devastation in Alberta and Ontario communities in recent weeks, underlines the need in Ontario for continued effective flood forecasting and warning, projects to limit flooding, and the management of development in flood plains, according to Conservation Ontario, the organization that represents conservation authorities. For more information visit this link:


South Huron Trail Mobile

New volunteer driver Norm Eckel joins Jerry Mathers to give nature experience to more people on South Huron Trail Mobile
The South Huron Trail Mobile is now entering its eighth year of giving people with limited mobility the chance to experience nature

There is a new face on the South Huron Trail Mobile. Last year, Norm Eckel, of the Zurich area, began serving as a volunteer driver of the five-passenger electric cart. He joins fellow volunteer driver Jerry Mathers, of Exeter. Jerry Mathers, and former volunteer driver Herman Steffens, were recognized earlier this year with Ontario Volunteer Service Awards for their more than five years of devoted service. The three drivers have generously given hundreds of hours of their time over the years but they say the satisfaction of making people happy has been worth the effort. Hundreds of people, who could not otherwise walk the accessible South Huron Trail, have been able to enjoy nature since the South Huron Trail Mobile was created in 2006. For more information visit:

Emerald Ash Borer killing Ash trees - new research looks at ways to deal with pest

Canadian Forest Service selects Hay Swamp as site for research into control of invasive Emerald Ash Borer

Researchers to study biological control of invasive beetle species; Research to take place on Ausable Bayfield Conservation properties in Hay Swamp, west of Exeter:  Two Ausable Bayfield properties near Exeter are the first sites in Canada to be chosen for new research into biological control of an invasive beetle species that is killing Ash trees. The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) continues to spread across Ontario. Researchers from the Canadian Forest Service have selected two sites in the Hay Swamp area, west of Exeter, for their research into management of populations of the damaging insect. The Emerald Ash Borer infests all native species of Ash. Native predators, parasites, and diseases have so far been unable to prevent infestation, so the trees are dying. Native Ash species have also shown very little resistance or tolerance to the Emerald Ash Borer pest, which was accidentally imported from Asia to North America. For more information see this link:
Ailsa Craig Family Fishing Event

Residents of Ailsa Craig and area are invited to Family Fishing Day

Children, families invited to July 14 fishing event along Ausable River:  Families from the Ailsa Craig area are invited to come out to an Ontario Family Fishing Week event, Family Fishing Day in Ailsa Craig, on Sunday July 14, 2013. The event takes place from 9 a.m. to 12 noon, along the Ausable River at Lions Park in Ailsa Craig (corner of Old Mill Street and William Street). The Ailsa Craig Lions Club has been hosting this event for the past three years. The event costs $5 per child or $10 per family. Fishing on Ausable River, a barbecue lunch, and prizes for children will be included. For more information visit:

New website for Ausable Bayfield Conservation

New website to better serve you

Improved search tool, and drop-down menus among improvements: Ausable Bayfield Conservation has been making improvements to the website over the past year and you can now see the new design in action. The new site was made to make it easier for you, the user, to find information you need. There are more than 150 pages on the site and an improved search engine is there to make it easier to find the information you want. Other improvements include drop-down menus, new labels based on the keywords residents use, colourful banners to promote programs and services, headlines to keep the home page current, and much more. There is still a lot of work to do on the website so we ask your patience as we mend broken links, update information, and continue to gear the site to you, the user. We hope you find this improved site will help you find our programs, services, grants, events, and much more. Please see: 
July 18 is date of technical workshop about rural stormwater project

Healthy Lake Huron partnership to offer update at July 18 workshop about computer-based model to better manage stormwater runoff
 The Healthy Lake Huron partnership will host a technical workshop in Clinton to update people about the project to create an event-based computer model to better understand and manage stormwater runoff in a largely rural area along Lake Huron, stretching from Sarnia to Tobermory

Organizers say this workshop may be of interest to engineers, drainage contractors, researchers, stewardship professionals, rural landowners, and others involved with rural land conservation and best management practices. The workshop takes place at the Banquet Hall of REACH Huron (Regional Equine and Agricultural Centre of Huron Inc.), at 169 Beech Street, in Clinton, Ontario, on Thursday, July 18. Registration is at 8:30 a.m. The morning session, from 8:45 a.m. to 12 noon, includes background on the project.  The afternoon session, from 1 p.m. – 2:45 p.m., features technical discussion on the development of the model. Participants are asked to pre-register with the option to attend the morning, afternoon, or the whole day. The hosts are offering a web conference and teleconference option for those who cannot attend in person. To register for the workshop, web conference or teleconference, please download the registration form at: or download the PDF file at:  If you are interested in attending in person or by phone and computer, please return the registration form by July 12, to Alec Scott, at You may also register by calling 519-235-2610 or 1-888-286-2610. There is no charge to attend the workshop but there is a $15 cost if you choose to have the optional light lunch.

Alec Scott, Water and Planning Manager, Ausable Bayfield Conservation

Ontario’s model of flood plain management reduces impacts of flood events

COLUMN BY ALEC SCOTT, WATER AND PLANNING MANAGER: Program provides economic and social benefits through protection of life and property: People in some Ontario and Alberta communities have witnessed extreme flooding in the past weeks and these disasters are a powerful reminder of the need to prepare for flood events. It was a natural disaster in 1954 that prompted municipalities and the Province of Ontario to start a program with several facets including flood forecasting, flood warning, communication and education, flood control works, and preventive environmental land-use planning. When Hurricane Hazel hit the Humber River Watershed that year, the natural disaster killed eighty-one people and caused more than $180 million in damages. That flood event showed why the province needed a forward-looking flood plain management program of flood forecasting, mapping, warning, and regulation to keep new development away from areas prone to natural hazards such as flooding. Flooding is the number one cause for a public emergency in Ontario. It’s not possible to prevent all impacts of flooding but good planning can help protect property and lives in the case of a storm event. To see the whole column click this link:
Conservation Strategy team's work now online

Community's work to create Conservation Strategy now online in new way

Dynamic web pages give new life to community recommendations: A diverse community group of 34 watershed community members participated in meetings in 2010 and 2011 and their work resulted in the 2012 document called: The Path Forward: Your Community Conservation Strategy for Ausable Bayfield Watersheds. The document has been online in PDF format since last year but we have created some web-friendly ways to view the recommendations your neighbours had for healthier watersheds. See the pages at:

Trees sequester carbon - help to adapt and mitigate changes in climate

Request for Proposals

On-line Carbon Calculator Development Project: The Ausable Conservation Authority, in partnership with the Maitland Valley Conservation Authority, are developing a new initiative to raise funding for increased tree planting within the project partners’ watersheds. The goal of this initiative is to encourage local individuals or families to become aware of their impact on greenhouse gas emissions, and to make a financial donation that will be used to fund increased tree plantings to counterbalance those impacts. For information on Request for Proposals see:
Ausable Bayfield Conservation remembers Bill Siemon

Ausable Bayfield Conservation remembers Bill Siemon
 He represented Huron East on Board of Directors

Ausable Bayfield Conservation remembers the dedication of Bill Siemon during his years on the Board of Directors, serving since April of 2007. Board, staff, and residents were saddened to learn that Bill had passed away, suddenly, at his home on Sunday, July 7, 2013. His quarter of a century of service as a municipal representative included dedicated service on the boards of directors of the Ausable Bayfield and Maitland Valley conservation authorities. For details about visitation and Bill's life please see:

Summer Nature Day Camp Added

Local summer nature day camps have grown so popular two weeks are now full and a third week has been added

A program almost cancelled is now more popular than ever – thanks to community: Two years ago Ausable Bayfield Conservation almost had to cancel Summer Nature Day Camps altogether but community parents and guardians, along with businesses and individuals in the watershed, helped to bring them back. Now the camps are more popular than ever. Local summer nature day camps have grown so popular two weeks are now full and a third week has been added. The July 22-26 and August 12-August 16 weeks are full. Call now to find out if spots are still available for the July 15-19 Summer Nature Day Camps. For more information visit:
Huron County Clean Water Project landowner plants trees

Huron landowner planting trees

Kippen-area landowner Joanne Scott says Huron County Clean Water Project has made it possible for her to do more tree planting to preserve topsoil, keep sediment out of her creek, limit erosion: Joanne Scott is one of the many Huron County landowners and residents who are preserving topsoil, limiting wind and soil erosion, and keeping creeks, rivers,  and Lake Huron clean with the support of the Huron County Clean Water Project.  Scott has owned a farm east of Kippen since 1990 when she moved from her family  farm near Ailsa Craig. Scott has completed about five different tree-planting  projects since acquiring her property. Huron County’s Clean Water Project is  providing some of the funds for her tree planting projects this year. For more information visit:
Friends of Trail Golf Tourney supports South Huron Trail

Golf tourney supports trail

Volunteers raise almost $3,900 for South Huron Trail through eighth annual Friends of the South Huron Trail Golf Tournament: Fourteen teams took part in the Friends of the South Huron Trail Golf Tournament on June 3, 2013 and the tourney raised almost $3,900 for the South Huron Trail. The annual tournament has raised more than $38,000 over the past eight years in support of the trail. This is the third year Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation has hosted the event and the Foundation expressed thanks to the  community members who helped organized the event. For more information visit or visit:
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