ABCA Receives Watershed Report Card

A draft of a watershed report card has been presented to the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Board.

Healthy Watershed Coordinator Mari Veliz says the report looks at areas like forest conditions and water quality in surface water. They have different expectations for each area and they have to collect their data over a long period of time to be able to determine trends.

Veliz says it’s difficult to achieved significant increases in forest cover in a landscape that’s heavily utilized in agriculture, urban utilization and parks.

She says as far as water quality, they’re interested in things that could promote algae blooms as well as E. coli concentrations near the beaches.  They also study the biology in the creeks.

“Things that we’re interested in are the things that would maybe promote algal blooms so the phosphorous or the nutrient conditions,” says Veliz. “People are always interested in the water conditions and how that might affect beach-going activities so E. coli concentrations are something we like to keep track of.”