We would like to let you know about some of the events taking place to learn about protecting water, soil, and living things in your watershed community. We also want to share your successes - such as planting cover crops, preserving natural areas for generations to come, and more. For more information visit www.abca.on.caThe content provided in this publication is intended for local educational and information purposes only. Every effort has been made to ensure the correctness of information as at the publication date (July 2015).

Family Fishing Day Ailsa Craig July 12Family Fishing Day in Ailsa Craig July 12

Residents of Ailsa Craig and area are invited to fish and learn about aquatic species at risk by attending Family Fishing Day event:

Children, families are invited to July 12 fishing event along Ausable River. Young people and families have a chance to take part in family fishing along the Ausable River and learn about fish, including species at risk, in the Ausable River by attending Family Fishing Day in Ailsa Craig. This is the fifth time this event has been hosted by the Ailsa Craig and District Lions Club. Family fishing day takes place Sunday, July 12, 2015 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. The event takes place along the Ausable River at Lions Park. The park is located at the corner of Old Mill Street and William Street.There is a barbecue lunch and there are prizes for children. The price is $5 per child or $10 per family. The event is hosted by the Ailsa Craig and District Lions Club in partnership with the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation and Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority. The fishing day is part of Ontario Family Fishing Week (July 4 – 12, 2015).
For more information, contact Kari at Ausable Bayfield Conservation at 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 or email kjean(at) or visit this link: Family Fishing Day in Ailsa Craig.
For a copy of the poster about the event visit the website and click this link: Poster.

South Huron Trail Run on Sunday, July 12

Proceeds from the run benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Huron and Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation: The South Huron Trail Run, which attracts runners from across Ontario and even some runners from the United States, takes place this Sunday, July 12, 2015. Proceeds from the run benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Huron and the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation.
There are three runs as part of the morning:
  • There is a 400-metre Kids’ Run at 8:45 a.m. Cost is $5 to register.
  • There is a five-kilometre trail run at 9 a.m. Race-day registration is $40.
  • There is an eight-kilometre run at 9:40 a.m. Race-day registration is $45.
The races begin at South Huron Recreation Centre at 94 Victoria Street East in Exeter.
The eight-kilometre trail run travels through the streets of Exeter for less than one kilometre and then enters the scenic and shaded trails of the South Huron Trail.
For more information visit South Huron Trail Run:

Mayhew Tract sign unveiled at dedication ceremony

Donation of nature area first for local Huron Tract Land Trust Conservancy; Dignitaries spoke at dedication ceremony and sign unveiling to recognize generous donation of land by Mayhew family in memory of Jack and Iris Mayhew: Cyclists rode from Bayfield to the Holmesville area on Friday, June 19, 2015, during the Celebration of Water Weekend, to attend the dedication ceremony and sign unveiling for the Mayhew Tract. This important forested property, in the Holmesville area, was donated by the Mayhew Family, in memory of Jack and Iris Mayhew, to the local Huron Tract Land Trust Conservancy (HTLTC).
Jack and Iris’s daughter Janine and sons Greg and Tim were among family members to attend the ceremony. Greg Mayhew, of Holmesville, spoke on behalf of the Mayhew family. He said it was “a little overwhelming” that, instead of a few people shaking hands in front of a sign for a photo, dozens of people attended  to witness the dedication of land. “Thank you to everyone who came out today and made this possible,” he said. “It is our hope that this donation will preserve this lot in the natural state that Jack and Iris appreciated and we encourage others to see the value in our forested lands.” He said the parcel is a natural drainage area and provides natural habitat as well.
“Jack and Iris Mayhew farmed here for nearly 43 years,” he said, pointing to the home farm, cater-cornered from the Mayhew Tract. Greg recalled that at a time when his father, an avid outdoorsman, might have cleared fencerows or removed trees for more crop land, “he was still planting trees and creating grassed waterways.” When recalling the history of the ten-acre parcel that was donated, he said it was a source of firewood and a place to enjoy nature.
Greg recalled his mother bringing her children and grandchildren to the site. “Every spring Iris would bring us down to look for pussy-willows, a tradition she continued with her grandkids,” he said.
For more information visit:

Visit our channel

Ausable Bayfield Conservation invites you to check out some of our videos on YouTube.
Visit our channel by clicking on the YouTube icon on our home page.
Or, just click this link: These are just some of the videos you will find: Coming soon – a new video about Rock Glen Conservation Area in Arkona!

Are you in a vulnerable area?

Visit our maps; find out ways you can help to protect drinking water: Download our new brochure with maps of highly vulnerable aquifers and significant groundwater recharge areas in the Ausable Bayfield watershed. Find out ways you can help to protect drinking water sources in your community.
For more information visit:

Lambton Shores community invites you to join fight against invasive Phragmites affecting agricultural lands

Practical solutions for controlling Phragmites on farmland and drains to be shared at community information sessions on August 5 at Grand Bend Community Health Centre and August 6 at Legacy Centre in Thedford; Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) President Don McCabe to provide opening remarks; other speakers to present: People in the Grand Bend and Port Franks areas are continuing their fight against what may be Canada’s most invasive plant, Phragmites australis (European Common Reed). Phragmites is a tall, thick grass that a local community group has recognized as a threat to area farms, homes, and people. This plant needs to be controlled or it can develop into a dense mass that clogs drainage tiles and ditches, prevents water flow, and even causes flooding, according to the Lambton Shores Phragmites Community Group.
The community group and other local partners are hosting community information sessions on controlling Phragmites in agricultural and rural areas. Experts on Phragmites control will offer practical solutions to help combat, manage, and control the problem on farm lands and drains. The information sessions take place on Wednesday, August 5, 2015 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Grand Bend Community Health Centre, 69 Main Street East, Grand Bend and Thursday, August 6, 2015 at the Legacy Centre, 16 Allen Street in Thedford.
Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) President Don McCabe is to provide opening remarks. Other presenters include Ken Vegh, Municipal Drainage and Inspection Supervisor for the Town of Kingsville; Al Williamson, of Williamson Farms in Lambton Shores; Bill Weber, Mayor of the Municipality of Lambton Shores; and Dr. Janice Gilbert, of the Nature Conservancy of Canada and Ontario Phragmites Working Group.
For more information visit these links:

Read about new committee members

Biographies and photos have now been posted of the six new members of the drinking water source protection committee for the Ausable Bayfield Maitland Valley Source Protection Region. Learn about these local people, from different walks of life, who are helping to add protection to your sources of municipal drinking water.
For bios visit this link: For news release visit this link: For more information visit: The six new members who are joining the Ausable Bayfield Maitland Valley Drinking Water Source Protection Committee (SPC) are doing so at an important time as locally-developed source protection plans are implemented in Maitland Valley, Ausable Bayfield areas. A local committee devoted to protecting municipal drinking water sources now has some new faces around the table. There are six members as part of the Ausable Bayfield Maitland Valley Source Protection Committee (SPC). They will join nine members who are continuing on the committee. The new members replace six members who will be stepping down as part of a scheduled rotation of membership.
Two of the new representatives were selected by local municipalities and the other four new representatives come from different interests in the community (industry; commerce; property owner and resident associations; environmental sector). The nine continuing members of the committee represent municipalities (3); agriculture (3); public-at-large (2); and environment (1).

Help protect nesting turtles

Help protect Ontario's freshwater turtles; Turtle nesting season has begun in area: If you would like to find out more about turtles and how you can help monitor turtle populations and protect these species, contact Hope Brock at Ausable Bayfield Conservation. Phone 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 or email Hope Brock through our staff contacts page.
For more information visit these links:

Call us for copies of educational materials

We are producing less paper, using more online tools, but we still have a few printed products: Ausable Bayfield Conservation is reducing the number of printed materials we produce and making more use of websites, social media, and electronic communications channels. A limited number of printed materials are still available for use by you in your place of worship, farm group, watershed steering committee, or other community group. Are you a teacher or youth group leader? Do you have a literature rack at your office or place of business? We have a small number of previously published materials for your use. Examples include conservation area guides, community Conservation Strategy documents, Watershed Report Card summaries, Species at Risk brochures, Healthy Lake Huron newsletters, and more. Contact us toll-free at 1-888-286-2610 or email communications(at) to order copies of some of these educational materials at no charge to you.

Huron County agricultural producers answer the call by planting cover crops

Huron Clean Water Project announced cover crop incentives in spring of 2015; before the official start of summer landowners had already stepped forward to plant more than 1,244 acres of cover crops: Only a few months after the Huron County Clean Water Project announced the new cover crop incentive category, in the
Spring of 2015, Huron County landowners already had stepped forward to decide to plant more than 1,244 acres of cover crops. On June 18, the project review committee approved $12,440 in cover crop grants at the committee’s first meeting since the category was announced.
The new cover crop incentive category helps agricultural producers try new cover-crop mixes that protect and improve soil, promote nitrogen fixation, and protect water quality. Cover crops such as rye, oats, radish, or millet cover the soil during the non-growing season. The county project provides $10 per acre as an incentive. Plantings must include at least two species and residue must remain on the surface until the spring.
Cover crops can help to reduce soil erosion that occurs when there are no crops actively growing on the fields. Cover crops help to keep soil in the fields to grow crops and help to keep sediment out of creeks, rivers, and the lake. Other benefits of cover crops include maintaining and building soil organic matter, improving soil structure, and increasing infiltration which reduces surface runoff.
For more information visit:

Summer Nature Day Camps filling up – a few spots left!

It's hard to believe that only a few years ago it looked like summer nature day camps would face cancellation. In recent years the day camps have been more successful than ever. Ausable Bayfield Conservation is offering three weeks of Summer Nature Day Camps in 2015. The dates are July 20- 24; July 27-31; and August 17-21. The July 20-24 day camps have been full for some time. There may still be a few spots available for the other two camps. Contact our conservation education staff about availability for the July 27-31 camp at Morrison Dam Conservation Area for ages 6-9.  For more information visit:

Call conservation educators as well at toll-free 1-888-286-2610 or email info(at) for information on the W.I.L.D. (Wonder, Investigate, Learn, and Discover) Nature Camp August 17-21 camp for children ages 9-12. WILD Nature Camp features days at Morrison Dam Conservation Area near Exeter plus one night overnight at Camp Sylvan. Registration includes bus transportation to and from Camp Sylvan and healthy meals provided while at Camp Sylvan. For more information visit: WILD Nature Camp 

Project to create new pedestrian bridge along South Huron Trail supported by golf tourney

The use of the MacNaughton-Morrison Section of the South Huron trail has increased and vehicle traffic on Morrison Line seems to have increased as well. This two-lane municipal road is the only way for people to link the north and south sides of the MacNaughton-Morrison and Morrison Dam Conservation Area sections of the South Huron Trail. The speed limit has been reduced and trail crossing signs have been installed. Safety can be increased even more if a new pedestrian bridge is built downstream of Morrison Dam.
In 2015, the Friends of the South Huron Trail Charitable Golf Tournament funds will support a project for a new pedestrian bridge on the South Huron Trail. The project goal for the pedestrian bridge is $175,000 and about $50,000 had been raised, by 2015, towards this goal. The proposed bridge will be the same style as the Stirling Bridge, midway between Exeter and Morrison Line. It would include a steel bridge, with boardwalks at both ends, and links to the existing trails. It would be suitable for pedestrians, cyclists, strollers, wheelchairs, the South Huron Trail Mobile (for people with limited mobility), and winter visitors. The completion of this project could enhance use of
the trail for decades.
The Tenth South Huron Trail Golf Tournament takes place on Monday, August 31, 2015 at Ironwood Golf Club. Registration is 8:30 a.m. and shotgun start is 9 a.m. The event is a Texas Scramble format and is followed by lunch. Ironwood Golf club is located at 70969 Morrison Line, two kilometres east of Exeter, just south of Highway 83. For more information visit
For more information on how to take part in this charitable golf tourney visit:
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