Who Does What on Georgian Bay? Your Guide to the GB5 Organizations Working to Protect the BayRead More...
The “Guardians of the Bay” (GOTB) is an initiative to permeate a mentality of protection and preservation across all parties that touch Georgian Bay, in any way, big or small.Read More...
Water levels continue to be well above average and near or above record high levels. From a month ago the water levels on Lakes Superior and St Clair are 2 & 4 inches lower respectively, Lake Michigan-Huron is unchanged, and Erie and Ontario are 5 and 4 inches higher, respectively. Lakes Superior, Michigan-Huron, St. Clair, Erie & Ontario are 3, 17, 14, 12 & 6 inches higher respectively than they were at this time last year, and 15, 39, 40, 37 & 20 inches, respectively above their long term February average. Lakes Superior, Michigan-Huron, and Erie are currently 1, 6 & 6 inches, respectively higher than their previous record highs for February. In a month’s time, the level of Lake Superior is expected to be down by 1 inch, and Lakes Michigan Huron, St
Ticks are being found in abundance on the bodies of Canadian moose and researchers from the universities of New Brunswick and Laval are currently studying the tick infestation to see how it may be affecting the moose population. According to the scientists, warmer winters and less snow are making it easier for ticks to survive and their range is moving increasingly farther north. Moose calves are particularly susceptible to this influx of ticks as the parasites often render them anemic and unable to cope during the lean winter months. Although these ticks do not carry Lyme disease or other diseases that can be transmitted to humans, this climate change impact to our iconic moose is certainly alarming. Read more here.
Between 2009-2019, the OPP investigated 175 snowmobile fatalities throughout the province. The top contributing factors listed were excessive speed, loss of control, driving too fast for the conditions, and ability impaired by alcohol, with alcohol listed as a factor in 45% of the deaths. According to the report, almost half of the snowmobilers who died were traveling on frozen lakes or rivers at the time of the incident. The circumstances that led to the deaths include intentionally driving onto open water (puddle jumping/water skipping), breaking through the ice, and collisions with other snowmobiles and landmarks. Despite readily accessible information on avoiding accidents and responsible operation of snowmobiles, it appears that the message is still not getting through
Over the past week, well above normal temperatures continued across much of the Great Lakes basin. - Water levels continue to be well above average and near record high levels. From a month ago the water level on Lakes Superior is 3 inches lower, but Lakes Michigan-Huron, St Clair, Erie, and Ontario are 1, 7, 9 and 6 inches higher, respectively. Lakes Superior, Michigan-Huron, St. Clair, Erie & Ontario are 3, 18, 17, 14 & 7 inches higher respectively than they were at this time last year, and 15, 39, 43, 37 & 20 inches, respectively above their long term February average. Lakes Superior, Michigan-Huron, St Clair and Erie are currently 1, 6, 3 & 6 inches, respectively higher than their previous record highs for February. In a month’s time, th
The last week saw warm temperatures with the average daily high temperatures between 8 and 160F above normal depending on location. The warmer air was accompanied by above average precipitation with most of the basin receiving half to an inch of precipitation. - Water levels continue to be well above average and near record high levels. From a month ago the water level on Lakes Superior is 2 inches lower, but Lakes Michigan-Huron, St Clair, Erie, and Ontario are 1, 9, 9 and 5 inches higher, respectively. Lakes Superior, Michigan-Huron, St. Clair, Erie & Ontario are 4, 19, 27, 12 & 10 inches higher respectively than they were at this time last year, and 14, 39, 39, 35 & 22 inches, respectively above their long term January average. Lake Michigan-Huron, St
The Lake Partner Program is a volunteer water quality monitoring program for Ontario's inland lakes. The funding for this program has been under threat from the Ford government budget cuts. GBA has been working with Federation of Ontario Cottagers' Associations (FOCA) to advocate for retention of the program and the modest amount needed from the Ontario government each year to keep it going. We are pleased to report that it’s future is now secure under the current administration. Read more about the government's commitment here. -
The OPP would like to remind motorists that weather and road reports are easily located on your mobile or hands free devices so you can make informed decisions about your route before you head out on the highway. In conjunction with local radio and TV stations who contribute to social media feeds through their respective Twitter accounts, the following links will assist those who are looking for current information on traffic conditions, snow plow locations, road and weather information, and route planner on their electronic devices, when it is safe and lawful to do so. Ontario 511 is a bilingual digital traveller information service provided by the Ministry of Transportation. This website has been designed by and for users to help people plan their routes and travel safely and effic
Although this massive 1,000 MW output project, with a flow rate equivalent to ~42% of the Canadian side of Niagara Falls, is proposed for a site on the west coast of the Bay, GBA is examining this project because we have several concerns about the environmental impacts from the inflow and outflow of Georgian Bay water on: fish mortality, water turbidity, water temperature increases, and habitat destruction. See our TC Energy page for more info. - -
Water levels continue to be well above average and near record high levels. From a month ago the water level on Lakes Superior is unchanged, but Lakes Michigan-Huron, St Clair, Erie, and Ontario are 3, 4, 6 and 3 inches higher, respectively. Lakes Superior, Michigan-Huron, St. Clair, Erie & Ontario are 4, 20, 21, 8 & 8 inches higher respectively than they were at this time last year, and 15, 39, 37, 32 & 20 inches, respectively above their long term January average. Lake Michigan-Huron is currently 5 inches higher than its previous record high for January and is the only lake that currently exceeds its previous record high for January. In a month’s time, the levels of Lakes Superior, and Michigan Huron are expected to be down by 3 and 1 inches, re
Please be careful out on the ice and check with local information sources before attempting any ice surface travel. If you must travel on the current ice surface conditions, it is strongly recommended that you: wear proper survival clothing/suit; take a fully charged cell phone with you; and tell a friend, neighbour or family member of your destination. Further safety suggestions from the Red Cross can be found here. When ice forms early it may look safe but it is likely not yet thick, strong or stable enough to support much weight. Adhering to land-based Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) prescribed trails whenever possible offers the safest snowmobile terrain. The OFSC provide many trail suggestions that avoid water crossings altogether as well as bridges and culverts to p
Safe Quiet Lakes (SQL) is looking for support to restrict excessive boat noise on Canadian waterways. This SQL proposal would mirror successful legislation in place in the EU and the US, which places limits on the decibel levels emitted from boat engines in order to curb excessive noise. - GBA supports this initiative and will assist SQL, garner support, and provide updates as this project moves forward. - For summary details, please see: Safe Quiet Lakes Decibel Project - -
Premier Doug Ford, along with Laurie Scott, Minister of Infrastructure, and Norm Miller, MPP for Parry Sound-Muskoka, were in Parry Sound last week to announce a $200 million investment in rural community infrastructure. $5.8 million will be dispersed throughout 26 municipalities within Parry Sound-Muskoka. Although this is good news for our coastal municipalities, climate change activists protesting at the announcement made some valid points, some consistent with recent GBA submissions to the Ontario government. Read more about the announcement and the protest here. - Details of the funding and allocations for the Parry Sound-Muskoka area can be found here. Allocations for Manitoulin and North Channel areas can be found here. -
What’s your name and what’s your connection to Georgian Bay? Sheila Williams and I (Celesta Bjornson) are the co-presidents of the Bay of Islands Association (BICA) and have been enjoying our summers in the Bay of Islands since we were toddlers. My family is from Pittsburgh and we originally found the Bay of Islands in the 1950s by vacationing at a fishing lodge called Moredolpton Lodge. Sheila's family is one of the founding families of the Bay of Islands. Her grandfather discovered the Bay of Islands in early 1900s while working on the lakers, travelling from southern Georgian Bay to the North Channel, transporting lumber back south. He fell in love with the area and purchased an island around 1924 and began building a cottage. Why is being a Guardian of the Bay important to yo
Luc Voorn is a cottager in the South Channel and a passionate advocate for Georgian Bay. He currently serves as the Membership Chairperson for the South Channel Association (SCA), Editor of the SCA “On the Waterfront” newsletter, and as Director, Friends of the Massasauga Park. This past summer (2019), he was nominated as a Guardian of Georgian Bay for his ongoing enthusiasm and efforts to protect and preserve the Bay. Note from Jamie Drayton, GBA Chair of Guardians of Georgian Bay Committee My Dad used to take us camping. His lure to get us to bathe was to promise us ice cream if we ran into the water first thing in the morning for a swim. I recall the water being absolutely freezing at 7 o’clock in the morning… I don’t recall ever getting any ice cream. A few years l
As nominated by Heather Sargeant My Phragbuster Hero About 5 or 6 years ago, at an event jointly put on by the Georgian Bay Association, Georgian Bay Forever, and featuring Dr. Gilbert, an ecologist with Phragmites expertise , I first learned about invasive Phragmites and the harm it can have on wetlands. I decided to investigate if Phragmites was a threat in Woods Bay (my favourite area of Georgian Bay), and that’s when my journey tackling this plant began. I wasn’t sure if a plant across from the family cottage was indeed the invasive type, and so I was nervous and queasy about leading people to help me cut it. What if it was the native plant, and I’d taken all these people out to cut down something benign? One of my neighbors told me there was a hero on Georgian
The Environmental Commissioner of Ontario has just released a useful guide on how to how we can all reduce our environmental footprints. Being a Guardian of the Bay also means doing what we can to reduce our individual consumption of carbon based fuels. - Here is a very good fact sheet and here is a full presentation on this topic. -
What’s your name and what’s your connection to Georgian Bay? Cory Kozmik, Anthony Laforge, Samantha Noganosh, Chevaun Toulouse. We are the Lands and Resource Department for Magnetawan First Nation, in Britt, Ontario. - Source: Magnetawan First Nation Our connection to the Bay is the dense biodiversity that it hosts and the role its ecology plays in our lives, including the environment. It is also where ancestors of the Anishinabek Nation walked and practiced each day what it means to live with the land in reciprocity. The connection to the land and water is sacred to the Anishinaabe culture, and held very close to the communities that inhabit the area. - Why is being a Guardian of the Bay important to you? We take great pride in being “Guardians” because it is our
My name is Eileen Maynard; I am 10 years old and the eldest of the 5th generation in my family at our cottage in Cognashene, part of the Georgian Bay Archipelago. Georgian Bay is so special to me. It is where I spend my summers and any weekend we can get free of our crazy life in the city. In the summer you can go swimming and tubing or out to islands for picnics. In the fall, it is so pretty with all of the colorful leaves and trees and a great time to go for a walk on Beausoleil Island. Being a Guardian of the Bay is important to me because Georgian Bay is vital to us and the animals around us. Being a Guardian of the Bay is a responsibility that we all have for keeping it healthy for the next 5 generations. Last year, with my grandfather, I applied for and was accepted as a vo
Sticking it to Garbage Along the Shoreline What’s your name and what’s your connection to Georgian Bay? My name’s Chloe Drayton and I’ve been going to Georgian Bay with my family since I was born - I’m only 7! It’s a nice, peaceful place and it’s nice to go swimming, look for turtles, go exploring on the rocks along the shore and spend time with my family. - Why is being a Guardian of the Bay important to you? Because I want to help all the animals and plants in nature and because it’s nicer to enjoy the cottage when there isn’t garbage lying around. I also want to enjoy Georgian Bay for a long, long time so we have to keep it nice and clean. - What’s your story that helps to show your Guardian of the Bay values? Every year we walk around the shoreline of ou
Go Wild and Protect the Bay What is your connection to Georgian Bay? I came from a family of campers. We didn’t have a cottage. This was back in the 1960s and early 70s and Killbear Provincial Park was one of my favourite campgrounds. It’s where I saw my first rattlesnake and caught my first smallmouth bass. I was introduced to the South Channel in the early 1980s when my wife, Beth, invited me to her family cottage. We bought our own property in the late 90s and have made the annual trek from Alberta to Georgian Bay every year since. - Why is being a Guardian of the Bay important to you? I believe that an individual’s actions are as important as government regulations for protecting Georgian Bay. We are the guardians of our property’s ecological health. Collectively, Guardi