Tuesday, 08 March 2016 22:15

With funding in hand, the Blue Mountain Watershed Trust kicks off an ambitious new project to preserve and protect a local Class A salmon & trout stream.

Collingwood, ON –It began last spring when the Kolapore Springs Fish Hatchery welcomed one and all to its Feast in the Forest, a celebration of good food, drink and music in a natural setting.

Every year, Kolapore Springs donates net proceeds from the Feast to a local charity. Last spring, Kolapore principal Sean Brady chose the Blue Mountain Watershed Trust as the recipient—and he wanted his donation to go somewhere specific: to create awareness and protection around Silver Creek. Kolapore Springs wants to make sure that Silver Creek remains a prime cold water trout/salmon stream.

The Watershed Trust built on this momentum to apply for—and win—an Ontario Trillium Grant. The Trust is pleased to announce the beginning of an initial 1-year project to preserve, protect and create awareness around the Silver Creek.

To spearhead the effort, the Trust has engaged Rebecca Ferguson, BES, as Project Manager. Rebecca was most recently a Watershed Monitoring Technician with the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority. “I’m really looking forward to working with local landowners all along Silver Creek as well as the broader community,” says Ferguson. “Keeping our pristine land and waters safe for other species and the community is so important.”

Project ambitions include better preserving the privately owned land along Silver Creek from current and future development pressures, pesticide and erosion run-off, and livestock contamination. The Watershed Trust hopes to increase vegetation cover along the Creek in order to keep the water cool—key to its health as a trout/salmon stream—and to make it easier for fish to swim up the Creek to spawn.

About Silver Creek

Silver Creek flows down the Niagara Escarpment from the Lake of the Clouds near Grey Road 19, through the west part of the Town of Collingwood to its mouth at Georgian Bay within the Silver Creek Wetland. It is the stream that the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority has given the highest health rating of any southern Georgian Bay river or stream.

About The Blue Mountain Watershed Trust Foundation

TheBlue Mountain Watershed Trust Foundation (Watershed Trust), Ontario’s first watershed trust, was founded in 1994. During the past 20 years, the Watershed Trust has dedicated itself to the task of protecting the Silver Creek and its Wetland, one of the region’s most valuable natural features. The Silver Creek Watershed offers $10.5 million worth of non-market ecological services to the province each year.

The mandate of the Watershed Trust is to “develop awareness and promote partnerships that are required in order to successfully implement watershed planning in the Blue Mountain watersheds”. It is a grassroots, all-volunteer organization supported by donations and fundraising. The organization exists in order to raise awareness of and protect watercourses in the Collingwood/Blue Mountains area including Silver, Townline, Batteaux and Black Ash Creeks; the Beaver and Pretty Rivers; and Indian Brook.

For specific media inquiries, please contact: Carl Michener, Watershed Trust Board member, 416 476 7484 or visit watershedtrust.ca for further details.