Odonata monitoring of Haliburton Highlands Land Trust properties: fauna and protocols (Trent University) Prepared by Ryan Hill (BIOL 3891H) for the Haliburton Highlands Land Trust. Supervised by David Beresford from the Department of Biology. Trent University
Trent University Biology student Ryan Hill (BIOL 3891H) wrote a technical report to assist the Haliburton Highlands Land Trust in starting a dragonfly and damselfly monitoring program on their properties. Using a literature review and by scanning publicly available databases he was able to determine that there are 111 dragonfly and damselfly species that have been recorded in the proximity of the Haliburton Highlands Land Trust's five properties.
Ryan also brought forward several recommendations for protocols that could be used by the Haliburton Highlands Land Trust to add to this list and possibly monitor changes to the dragonfly and damselfly populations in the county. This project will form the foundation for future studies on these ecologically important species and will allow for the establishment of a long-term monitoring program.
Blue-Green Algae Mitigation Strategies (Trent University) Prepared by Angelo Pilolla, Brittany Latimer, Vedant Paresh Badheka and Andrew Bunn (ERSC 3160H) for the Miskwabi Area Community Association. Supervised by Tom Whillans from the Trent School for the Environment.
Lakes in the Haliburton area have experienced an unprecedented amount of Blue-Green Algae Blooms (BGA) that threaten lake water quality. This paper authored by Trent students Angelo Pilolla, Brittany Latimer, Vedant Paresh Badheka, and Andrew Bunn (ERSC 3160H) for the Miskwabi Area Community Association has two main objectives: to identify the various reasons why blue-green algae blooms occur as well as their impact, and to provide various strategies to mitigate blooms. An extensive literature review was conducted to answer these objectives.
The students concluded that there are many factors that can cause BGA blooms and these factors often interact with each other. The best preventative strategies lake residents can employ are being educated on BGA blooms, constructing monitoring programs for nutrient concentrations, preserving natural shorelines, regular septic system inspections, and reducing/eliminating fertilizer use. All of these activities will help to prevent BGA blooms from occurring and provide a healthy lake ecosystem.
Sustainable Procurement in CKL/Haliburton County (Trent University) Prepared by Zack Weaver and William Dobbin (IDST 422oY) for the CKL/HC Poverty Reduction Roundtable. Supervised by Paul Schaffer and Baris Karagaac of the Department of International Development Studies, Trent University.
Zackary Weaver and William Dobbin, two undergraduate students in IDST 4220Y (Assessment of Development Project) completed a study for the City of Kawartha Lakes & Haliburton County Poverty Reduction Roundtable on Sustainable Procurement. Sustainable Procurement, or Social Procurement, is a diverse set of policies connected through the objective of reducing poverty and better distributing wealth with communities.
Their research sought to understand the design and key characteristics of successful and unsuccessful social procurement initiatives, as well as impacts and limitations. The students formed recommendations as to how sustainable procurement can best be used as a strategy to reduce poverty, increase inclusion in the workplace, and encourage the participation of local businesses in the City of Kawartha Lakes and Haliburton County.
Zackary and WIlliam's research included four recommendations for CKL/HC on page 5 of the report. Their final recommendation is an education piece - "The education of staff, business and participants about policy goals and operations is crucial to the success of Social Procurement." You can review the full report on the U-Links database here:https://database.ulinks.ca/items/show/4915
Biodiversity Planning and Protection in the Last Refuge - The Land Between (Trent University) Prepared by Samantha Dunlop (ERST 4820Y) for the Land Between. Supervised by Tom Whillans from the Trent School of the Environment,
The Land Between bioregion is considered the last intact wilderness of southern Ontario. The Land Between is home to unique communities of flora and fauna. Habitat protection is essential for supporting biodiversity because biodiversity is important to ecosystem structure, function, and resilience. Threats to biodiversity include climate change, development, habitat fragmentation, light and noise pollution, and contaminants in soils and water. Policy levers that can help include night lighting and noise restrictions, brownfield encouragement, tree preservation bylaws, shoreline buffers and setbacks from significant wildlife habitats.
In response to concerns of threats to biodiversity in the Land Between bioregion, an inventory of existing policy levers concerning biodiversity and habitat protection was conducted. Analysis of these documents helped identify areas with adequate coverage, as well as relative gaps in municipal planning, of which there were many. In the upper tier government levels, these gaps were primarily identified in Peterborough County and Hastings County. Haliburton County also had significant gaps. At the municipal level, there were significant by-law gaps identified. Overall, the District of Muskoka had the most coverage. Find Samantha's report along with all of our others on our research database: https://database.ulinks.ca/items/show/4912 .
Kawagama Lake Benthic Macroinvertebrate Assessment: Year 2 (Trent University) Prepared by Robert Ormston (ERSC 4830Y) for the Kawagama Lake Cottagers' Association. Supervised by Tom Whillans from the Trent School of the Environment.
Benthic macro-invertebrates, colloquially referred to as “benthics” or “benthos”, are aquatic, spineless organisms that live on the bottom of water bodies. Since the late 1980’s they have been used as biological indicators for common aquatic pollutants as they spend part or the entirety of their lives in the water. Due to this long-term contact with the water around them, certain groups of benthics are more sensitive to stressors such as organic pollution (including excess phosphorus and nitrogen). This makes the presence or absence of certain groupings of benthics indicative of the overall ecological health of the water body in which they reside. The use of benthics as an indicator of water quality is now used throughout the world and has been widely used in Ontario, including in Kawagama Lake.
Robert Ormston completed the second annual assessment of Kawagama Lake in coordination with the Kawagama Lake Cottagers' Association. While at least three years of data are required to confidently make any meaningful conclusions, results from Robert's report and others that were completed across the county this year were mixed. Based on a literature review of potential impacts that could be causing these results Robert discovered that the fluctuating water levels over the course of the year brought about by the dam at the outlet of Kawagama Lake may have something to do with this, but further study is required.
An Investigation into Plastic Consumption and Alternatives for the Haliburton County Farmers’ Market (Trent University)
Prepared by Jamie Gallupe and Alissa Sallans (Trent IDST 4820Y) for the Haliburton County Farmers’ Market Association. Supervised by M. Derya Tarhan of the Department of International Development Studies, Trent University.
This project was an investigation into how single-use plastic consumption can be reduced at Haliburton County Farmers’ Markets . It includes a literature review of existing alternatives to single-use plastics, surveys and interviews. The Haliburton County Farmers' Market Association (HCFMA) conducted vendor surveys, which Trent IDST students Jamie Gallupe and Alissa Sallans then analyzed. The students also surveyed 145 market customers. Surveys focused on current market practices and opinions on potential improvements as the related to single-use plastics. Interview were also conducted with Market Managers from other Canadian farmers’ markets that have been working to lower their plastic consumption and distribution.
The study showed that 41% of market vendors self-report already avoiding single-use plastics. The most commonly reported single use plastic item at the markets was plastic bags. Customer surveys showed general support for reducing plastic at the markets and that most respondents would be willing to pay slightly more for more sustainable packaging ($0.05-$1.00). Recommendations for HCFMA include posting infographic for customers, creating vendor policies around plastic use, and potentially implementing a reusable dishes program and washing station, and/or conducting a waste audit."
Young Adult Engagement in Minden Hills (Trent University) Prepared by Sarah Cumming and Lindsay Dixon (Trent IDST 4820Y) for the Township of Minden Hills. Supervised by M. Derya Tarhan of the Department of International Development Studies, Trent University.
“I lived all over Canada and couldn’t find anywhere that felt like a community; I was really missing the sense of community that I had growing up here [in Minden Hills]”
Over 2019-20, Fourth Year Trent International Development Studies (IDST) students Sarah Cumming and Lindsay Dixon undertook a full-term, large-scale research project on how to better engage and retain the young adult population in Minden Hills. Hosted by the Township of Minden Hills (Emily Stonehouse) and supervised by IDST faculty Derya Terhan, students gathered and analyzed data from their literature review, a 2019 local community consultation, an online survey and several telephone surveys. This report was designed to equip the Township of Minden Hills with a foundation for up-to-date research and to suggest initiatives as support for change.
Highlights from the Study:
• The top four factors for the study participants in deciding where to live were Employment, Family Ties, the Physical Environment and Housing; • 59% of participants felt engaged in the community of Minden Hills and the largest group within that (46%), only felt somewhat engaged; • Community and social networking with other young adults were important to participants to create a sense of home. Increased internet access was identified by several survey participants in the open-ended questions - as “what is important to this age group is the ability to network easily”; • Leaving their community to go to high school in Haliburton means young adults in Minden Hills and other townships may start feeling disconnected from an early age; • The majority of participants noted that there could be better representation of their age group in planning for municipal events; • Recreational programming for young adults was seen as limited, and often geared towards the senior population and during working hours; • A shortage of evening entertainment activities can lead to feelings of isolation; • Some participants felt there is a lack of formal support systems for youth employment in the County; • Study participants felt as though Minden Hills' natural beauty and rural location had a positive influence in their decision where to live.
Page 35 of the report includes a table of recommendations that the Township of Minden Hills can consider in their strategic planning going forward.
Halls Lake Benthic Invertebrate Baseline Health Assessment (Trent University)
Prepared by Ian McBain (Trent BIOL-3890Y) for the Halls and Hawk Lake Property Owners Association. Supervised by David Beresford, Trent School of the Environment.
This project was a part of a larger program aimed at determining the health of Haliburton County’s lakes through the use of benthic macroinvertebrates. The Halls and Hawk Lake Property Owners Association (HHLPOA) was interested in determining the health of their lakes through the collection and analysis of benthic macroinvertebrates; small, spineless organisms that live on the lake bottom.
After consultation with the HHLPOA, Trent Biology student Ian McBain sampled the selected sites along the shoreline of Halls Lake, identified any benthos down to order, then analyzed the data using internationally recognized indices. While this project is still in its preliminary phase and many years of data are required to determine the health of the lake with any certainty, Ian’s analysis showed that Halls Lake is of adequate health but could likely improve further. A continuation of this project will take place during the Fall of 2020."
Haliburton Forest Parking Lot Revitalization Follow-up (Trent University)
Prepared by Liam Doyle and Madison Fulmer (ERSC 4830Y) for Haliburton Forest. Supervised by Tom Whillans of the Trent School of the Environment. This six-part follow-up project is an assessment of Haliburton Forest’s main parking area and includes recommendations to revitalize the space. Part 1 details the history and current state of the forest, establishes a vision for the project, includes a site inventory, and examines site potential and potential challenges. Part 2 contains a detailed literature review of ‘green’ parking lot design and maintenance options including de-icers and dust suppressants options, invasive species management, rainwater capture technology, and innovative pavement options. In Part 3, various potential design options are presented and discussed.
The final site design is presented in Part 4 and followed by Part 5 which summarizes the material and immaterial costs of the design. This section also discusses the benefits associated with the design. The final section, Part 6, provides environmental, social, and economic frameworks and discussions that justify the designs implementation. The final plan includes details for the inclusion of a pavilion, playgrounds, planters, a submarine display, a bird garden, signage, and pervious asphalt (which offers improved drainage over regular paving).
Calculating the impact of the SIRCH Warehouse (Fleming College)
Prepared by the Sustainable Waste Management class from Fleming College for SIRCH. Supervised by Phil Jensen of the Fleming School of Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences. SIRCH Thrift Warehouse is a re-use store based in Haliburton, Ontario. SIRCH's Executive Director wanted to know how much material they are effectively diverting from landfill through their operations. The goal of the report was to outline multiple options that SIRCH could potentially use to quantify the amount of donations they receive so that SIRCH could use the information to determine how much material they are diverting from landfill. The student team consulted multiple outside sources to gain an understanding of how other reuse stores quantify their donations. The options that the team explored in Chapter 1 include 1) weighing the items donated, 2) using an average weight and applying it to all donations and 3) associating a weight with a specific volume and quantifying the donations through volume. Chapter 2 makes recommendations for how most donations could be measured by the cubic yard using appropriately sized bins. Chapters 2 and 3 both make recommendations for grant programs related to waste diversion and waste reduction that SIRCH could consider applying to. Also in Chapter 3, students explored examples of existing municipal-thrift partnerships, and what practices could be applied to the SIRCH warehouse. The final chapter is a review of thrifting and thrift stores in Canada.
QEII Moose Species Summary (Trent University) Examining the Natural and Cultural Significance of the Eastern Moose (Alces alces americana) in Queen Elizabeth II Wildlands Provincial Park
Prepared by Jazlyn Burrell and Sarah Wray (ERSC 4830Y) for Ontario Park. Supervised by Peter Lafleur of the Trent School of the Environment.
The purpose of this project was to provide an overview of the role of moose in QEII and insights into best management practices. Queen Elizabeth II Wildlands Provincial Park in a non-operating park in South-Central Ontario and falls within two wildlife management unit (WMU). The 33,505-hectare park is mostly with WMU 56, with the northwestern portion of the park being in WMU 53. The park is a mixed wood ecozone and is used for canoeing, hiking, and backcountry camping. The eastern moose plays an important role within this ecosystem as food for large predators, by contributing to nutrient cycling, and as natural vegetation control. They also have cultural significance, especially for the 30 Indigenous communities in the area. The range of eastern moose includes eastern Canada and the northeastern United States. In Ontario, they can be found in northern and central Ontario. Their habitat requirements include areas for foraging, travelling, and for shelter and calving. For their diet they need year-round access to both evergreen and deciduous trees, as well as to aquatic ecosystems such as lakes, rivers, and wetlands in the warmer months. Moose populations in the area have been in decline since the 1990s. The primary factors in moose mortality are climate change, parasites, vehicle collisions, habitat loss, and hunting.
Recommendations for park management included remote sensing, evaluating the need for rut season closures and/or buffers around critical habitat features, opportunities for co-management with local Indigenous communities, and exploring adaptive measure to reduce the climate vulnerability of the eastern moose.
U-Links Centre for Community Based Research operates within the Williams Treaty First Nations Michi Saagiig territory as well as the unceded territories of the Algonquin Nation. We respectfully acknowledge that the Williams Treaty First Nations and Algonquin Nation are the stewards and caretakers of these lands and waters in perpetuity, and that they continue to maintain this responsibility to ensure their health for generations to come..