A Message from our President

by Mike Thomas, PLCA President

Our big project in 2016 and 2017 has been and is the ‘Love Your Lake’ shoreline assessment study, in partnership with the Coalition of Haliburton Property Owners’ Associations (CHA). After an on-again/off-again start last summer we did finally get started in late August, and 423 properties were assessed (all of Upper Paudash) by the Trent University assessors.  Thanks to Brian Suter and Mike Hale for driving the boats, Freda Thomas for providing the lodging, and Carol-Ann and Bill Lowry for internet accessibility.

This summer the remaining properties on Paudash (approximately 300+) will be assessed. In April or May each property owner of lots assessed in 2016 will receive a confidential report about the results for their property.

I want to review this project with members here so we are clear on what is happening, why it is happening and when!

The shoreline is assessed from photographs under four categories:

Natural:  A healthy buffer of natural vegetation and/or a natural shoreline of sand or exposed rock that is undisturbed and undeveloped.

Regenerative:  Natural vegetation has been removed in the past, but is in the process of growing back towards a natural state.

Ornamental:  All natural vegetation has been removed and replaced with mowed lawn and other non-native vegetation.  Structures such as docks, decks, boat houses and boat ramps are predominantly present at the shoreline.

Degraded:  Natural vegetation has been lost; soil erosion, undercutting of the bank, and/or exposed roots of shrubs and trees are significant.

These Category definitions were taken from an online copy of the Koshlong Lake Shoreline Assessment Project carried out in 2014. http://www.koshlonglake.ca/uploads/7/4/4/8/74482467/koshlong_lyl_general_report.pdf

Studies indicate that at least 75% of a lake’s shoreline needs to be in a ‘natural’ or ‘regenerative’ state in order to maintain healthy lake water quality.

If our lake does not meet the 75% minimum – the water quality is declining and will continue to decline unless action is taken to re-naturalize the lake shoreline.

For each individual property or the lake as a whole the number of metres of each shoreline category is determined from the photographs taken and percentages calculated.  The aggregated results for the Upper Paudash Lake properties surveyed in 2016 are:

Natural: 41%
Regenerative: 34%
Ornamental: 24%
Degraded:   1%

 Haliburton Highlands Land Trust Chair Mary Lou Gerstl, PLCA President Mike Thomas, and board member Pat Warren at the 2016 HHLT gala.

Haliburton Highlands Land Trust Chair Mary Lou Gerstl, PLCA President Mike Thomas, and board member Pat Warren at the 2016 HHLT gala.

For comparison, 47 lakes have been surveyed in Haliburton County from 2014 - 2016 with results:
29 lakes at or above the 75% rating
18 lakes below the 75% rating

Your confidential report will indicate where your property falls and what can be done if improvement is needed.  Your association (PLCA) does not see your report – we only see an aggregate total for the whole lake.  If your confidential report falls below 75% natural + regenerative we are hoping that you will contact us at the PLCA (through our website or to our Vice President, Gord Chong (gordchong@rogers.com) so we can help you improve the property with consulting and access to natural shoreline plants at reduced costs through the Coalition of Haliburton Property Owners. 

Enviro-Hero
On October 23, 2016 I accepted, on behalf of the PLCA, this award from the Haliburton Land Trust at their annual gala in recognition of the healthy environmental work our association has done and is committed to keep doing.  We were nominated by the Highlands East Council and we thank both the council and the HLT for this honour.

 

Summer Activities
Saturday, July 1 is a bigger holiday than normal this year being Canada’s 150 birthday.  The annual decorated boat parade begins at 2:00 p.m. at the south end of North Bay and ends at the Lakehouse restaurant where food and drink will be available.

Other events and dates are:

Saturday, July 8: Don Thomas Memorial Rock Bass Derby

Saturday, July 22: PLCA Annual General Meeting 

 Saturday August 5 Annual Regatta Fun Day

We hope to have a ‘Movie Under the Stars’ again (with date to be determined) and ‘’Geocaching’ is ongoing.

 

Lake Trout Stocking Program

The North Hastings Fish Hatchery will again be putting lake trout ‘fry’ into Paudash in May.  This is the third year in a row and we are so appreciative.  Please support any of their fund-raising activities.  

I am concerned with the increasing pressure being put on our lake trout population in winter with the growth of ice-fishing.  The ‘slot size’ currently protected and not allowed to be kept is 40-55 cm (15.7” to 21.7”).  Anything below or above this size can be kept up to the limit of 1 or 2 per day, depending upon your type of fishing licence.

The recently stocked lake trout are below 40 cm. and can be kept.  I would prefer that a winter moratorium (January 1 to March 31) be implemented on Paudash for a limited number of years (to be determined by MNRF) in order that those fish can have a better rate of survival.

Just recently the MNRF Zone 15 (within which all of Paudash lies) set up an ‘advisory council’ and we will be requesting that they take this into consideration.