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Saugeen Valley Rural Beaches impact study of the Durham subwatershed annual report for the period August 1988 to March 1989

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Title: Saugeen Valley Rural Beaches impact study of the Durham subwatershed annual report for the period August 1988 to March 1989
Author: Saugeen Valley Conservation Authority
Abstract: Although the Saugeen River has been known for high quality water, Durham reservoir beaches were dosed to swimming in 1987 due to bacterial contamination. The Saugeen Valley Rural Beaches Program, funded by the Ministry of the Environment, began in 1988 to address the problem of diffuse source pollution in the drainage area upstream of Durham. The study watershed is made up of small to medium size farm operations utilizing pasturing systems and cropping areas where suitable. The rolling moraine topography leaves much land unsuitable for agriculture and remaining forested with some recreational usage. A collection of watershed data base information was completed during the program year. Water quality evaluation revealed watercourses with considerable degradation due to agricultural land use practices. Other tributaries, unaffected by human activity, showed a high level of water quality which may be attainable throughout the subwatershed. Because water quality information was only generated since the beginning of the program in August, the effect of contaminated springtime runoff on the river system has not been evaluated. The second year of the program will document spring and early summer flow conditions and qualities which relate directly to swimming season considerations. Water quality analysis showed areas of concentrated agricultural activity to have correspondingly poor water quality. Sample analysis from station 6 on tributary A indicated the pollution potential of the surrounding pasture systems and emphasized the importance of further investigation of this part of the subwatershed. Articles in local news media concerning the Beaches Program contributed to the interest shown by landowners contacted through the stream survey. These positive contacts will be increased and expanded in the second year of the study through a landowner information and education program. Through these programs of field study, water quality evaluation and public relations, the first year of the Saugeen Valley Rural Beaches Program has established the groundwork for the remainder of the program.
Date: 1989
Rights: Queen's Printer for Ontario, Crown Copyright, Non-Commercial Use Permitted
Rights Holder: Queen's Printer for Ontario

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