On August 30th and 31st members of the MPOA Board, Watersheds Canada and MPOA member volunteers completed the installation of 24 underwater brush bundles in Mazinaw Lake. Underwater woody debris is a healthy component of lake environments. Sunken logs, trees, branches, and root balls provide excellent habitat for wildlife, including fish, turtles, birds, invertebrates, and more. Beaver activity, wind, erosion, or water inflows from rivers or creeks naturally deposit such woody debris into a lake. However, human activity and development have significantly reduced the amount of natural woody debris in lakes. Brush piles can provide fish with a food source, as well as shaded areas to rest, spawn, and escape predators.
Image i. MPOA V.P. Bob Reid & Lake Steward Vern Haggerty, along with Melissa Dakers of Watersheds Canada towing the bundles to the various pre-determined places on the lake
Existing fish habitat sites, suitable for the addition of woody debris (8 to 10 foot brush bundles, 2 to 3 feet wide, tied and anchored to 3 cinder blocks) were carefully selected so that they would not interfere with boaters. Our MPOA project in particular could show results. The MNRF did a net study of Mazinaw Lake this year and plans to do another in about three years. Hopefully we get some indication of how well our project has worked then.
Below is a link to a how to video featuring an in-water brush bundle project undertaken by the Lanark County Stewardship Council in partnership with the Lanark Fish and Game Conservation Club, Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority, Dalhousie Lake Association and Watersheds Canada. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qdHnWnQZlrU&feature=youtu.be
The MPOA would like to thank Watersheds Canada and all the volunteers for helping improve the fisheries habitat of Mazinaw Lake. Volunteers who assisted in the undertaking of 100+ hours of good old fashioned manual labour include, Herb Waldie, the Levere family, Tristan, Mathew and Dad Jim, Lawrence Arkilander, Mike Cairns, Charlie Menendez, Greg Mark, Lauder Smith of COFA (Conservationists of Frontenac Addington) and the MPOA Lake Steward team, Jamie Fraser, Bob Reid and Vern Haggerty.
Special Thanks also to Fisheries and Oceans Canada for their generous funding support of $900.00 for material costs.
Image ii: MPOA Volunteers Tristan & Matthew loading the bundles on to the barge.