Manitoulin Streams receives funding support from Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters

MANITOULIN—Manitoulin Streams Improvement Association (MSIA) has received funding support from the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (OFAH) Zone D, which it will use for a new project it is embarking this year in the Kagawong River.

“Your group does a lot of work, work that is very good for the (Manitoulin) Island,” stated Roy Polsky, chair of the OFAH Zone D, at the group’s annual general meeting held recently.

Manitoulin Streams had made a funding request for $2,500 from the OFAH, which was supported by the OFAH board members at the meeting.

Liam Campbell of MSIA told The Expositor the funding approved by MSIA will go toward working being carried out on the Kagawong River site 180. “We have done work above the bridge and now we will be working on the area from below the bridge. The money we received from OFAH is going to be used specifically for the purchase of trees (to restore riparian vegetation), education signage (to teach locals and tourists about fish spawning cycles and when the stream is most vulnerable to human impact) as well as trail improvements (increased stabilization in areas that are eroding and the placement of gravel for accessibility.”

“There is a 65 metres of stream section on the river that is very fast-flowing water and currently provides no support for fish,” Mr. Campbell told the meeting. “We want to improve fish habitat in Kagawong for salmon and other fish that spawn there, as well as carry out restoration work. And we will be continuing education tours at the Kagawong site. Over the last few years, when the salmon are running, people can be seen walking into the stream. We’ve talked to the township concerning improving trails and signage, to help people understand that the fish are there, and people shouldn’t be walking on their eggs. The main goal will be to restore the site.”

MSIA undertook many different projects, activities and events in 2021, as Mr. Campbell outlined at the meeting. The group’s major project last year was the Smith Bay Creek stream restoration project in Wiikwemkoong. Sixty-three linear metres of steam was restored and there was over 160 metres of restoration that took place.