Fisheries and Streams - NVCA

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Fisheries & Streams

Stream Rehabilitation

Volunteer stream restoration.jpgThe NVCA coordinates stream rehabilitation through the Healthy Waters Program. Candidate restoration sites are selected based on documented stream health impairments (severe erosion, degraded fish habitat) potential opportunities for rehabilitation, downstream benefits, and the value of contributions from other project partners. The NVCA can help to access funding support for high priority work sites. Projects may be completed on both public and private lands and may include:

  • Reforestation and revegetation of streamside corridors
  • Fish and wildlife habitat rehabilitation
  • Natural channel restoration
  • Erosion control
  • Livestock exclusion fencing
  • Dam removal
  • Installation of bottom discharges on dams
  • Enhancement of fish migratory routes

The NVCA is currently coordinating large-scale stream habitat rehabilitation programs on Beeton Creek and the Boyne River working in concert with the New Tecumseth Streams Committee and the Nottawasaga Steelheaders respectively. We are always looking for volunteer support for field work days! If you have any questions or are interested in completing a stream rehabilitation project within the NVCA area of jurisdiction, please contact Fred Dobbs, Manager of Stewardship Services. 

Fisheries Management

Mad_River_brook_trout_image.jpgFish habitat improvement projects comprise a large percentage of stream habitat rehabilitation work completed by the NVCA. For example, the enhancement of rainbow, brook and brown trout habitats is a primary goal of the Boyne River Rehabilitation Program jointly supported by the Nottawasaga Steelheaders and the NVCA.

The NVCA also participates in fish population management programs working in concert with the Midhurst District Office of the Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR). The NVCA and MNR recently partnered on a project to monitor the status of the Nottawasaga River walleye population. Walleye (and other species) were collected using trap nets set at Jack's Lake near the Town of Wasaga Beach. Information generated by the survey is being used to determine the health of Nottawasaga River walleye.

The NVCA and MNR are currently working on fisheries management options for Nottawasaga River rainbow trout through a partnership with the Nottawasaga Steelheaders. Fluctuations in the size of the Boyne River rainbow trout spawning run have raised questions about the health of the fishery and possible impacts from over harvest. A public input document has recently been developed. It identifies the nature of the harvest problem and provides various management options for public scrutiny. This document is available by contacting our Manager of Stewardship Services, Fred Dobbs

If you have any questions about fish habitat in the Nottawasaga River and Blue Mountain Watersheds or you are interested in participating in any fisheries management programs, please contact Fred Dobbs

Fisheries Habitat Management Plan

In 2009, NVCA in partnership with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and local environmental interest and stakeholder groups, developed the Fisheries Habitat Management Plan. This strategic document is designed to support aquatic resource protection, watershed stewardship, fisheries habitat compensation and land use planning.

Fisheries Habitat Management Plan.pdf 

(Large scale/high res versions of the maps in this document are available upon request. Speak to Fred Dobbs at the NVCA at 705-424-1479 x237 or

Mad River.pngA summary of the plan's recommendations include:

  1. Emphasizing habitat protection activities within the Escarpment Natural, Oak Ridges Moraine, Oro Moraine and Deep Valley Sand Plain fisheries habitat zones as well as un-developed natural lake shorelines.

  2. Emphasizing fisheries habitat restoration works within the Shallow Valley Sand Plain, Southern Clay Plain, Northern Clay Plain, Drumlinized Clay Plain, Escarpment Impact, Dundalk Till Plain, Eastern Uplands, Central Uplands and Minesing Wetlands habitat zones, and for developed lake shorelines.

  3. Implementing a “Core Fisheries Habitat Restoration Strategy” targeting permanently flowing watercourses within the Sand Plain Shallow Valley, Southern Clay Plain, Northern Clay Plain and Drumlinized Clay Plain zones.

  4. Using the fisheries habitat zone framework as a basis for identifying appropriate sampling station locations for fisheries habitat surveys and biomonitoring. Sample locations should be selected on each watercourse near the downstream limit of each zone, in order to best reflect the cumulative positive and negative impacts to aquatic habitat within the zone. This approach would facilitate defensible fish habitat quality and stream health comparisons between different watercourses in the NVCA area of jurisdiction.

  5. Implementing a study designed to identify stressors contributing to poor summer water clarity in the main branch of the Nottawasaga River, Innisfil Creek and Marl Creek, and, to determine associated impacts to fisheries habitat productivity.

  6. Generally managing fisheries habitats in the NVCA area of jurisdiction, consistent with the protection, restoration and enhancement of coldwater fisheries habitats, while protecting local features which currently provide warmwater predator fisheries habitat (see following bullets 7 and 8 for exceptions).

  7. Managing the lower Nottawasaga River reach (with the exception of the Montgomery Rapids section), Jack’s Lake, Marl Lake and warmwater tributary streams within the Northern Clay Plain and Minesing Wetlands habitat zones, as a warmwater predator fisheries habitat ecosystem attached to Nottawasaga Bay, and as an important migratory route for coldwater fish species (main river only).

  8. Managing Bass Lake (including the North  River), Orr Lake (including the Wye River), Little Lake (including adjacent reaches of Willow Creek) and Tottenham Reservoir as warmwater predator fisheries habitat ecosystems.

Pine River Fisheries Enhancement Program

Pine River in Ad Tos web.jpgNVCA is working to restore aquatic habitat and return local rivers and creeks to more natural and healthy states. Some of the most exciting work is happening on the Pine River.

Learn more about our ​Pine River Fisheries Enhancement Program:

Pine River Project 2015 2016 Information.pdf