Many people get the terms conservation authority and conservation area mixed up. Conservation Authority is the name of our organization. A Conservation Authority’s main purpose is to manage natural resources, mainly land and water, on a watershed basis. To do this, we participate in many different activities including surveys and studies of our natural resources, education programs, land use planning and forestry, to name a few.
A Conservation Area is a property owned by a Conservation Authority that has been developed for recreational use. Depending on the size and nature of the property, Conservation Areas may contain trails, picnic areas, swimming areas and other facilities.
There are two meanings to a watershed. The first is the area that the CRCA has jurisdiction over. This is an area that goes from the Bay of Quinte in the west to Brockville in the east and north to Newboro.
Our jurisdiction actually contains 11 major watersheds or drainage basins. A watershed is all lands drained by a river or stream and its tributaries. It is usually defined by a height of land.
Not all areas known as conservation areas are actually owned by the Conservation Authority. Some properties may be zoned conservation or environmental protection in the municipal zoning by-law, but are privately-owned or are owned by the municipality. Please check our Conservation Lands map to see if your property abuts one of our properties. If it does not, the CRCA does not own the property.
No. The CRCA does not provide this type of service. You need to call a wildlife removal company for assistance.
Before trying to eliminate the wildlife, ask yourself what you can do to reduce the problems being caused by wildlife. If animals are getting into your garbage, can you find a more secure way of containing it? If they are getting into your house, make sure all possible entrances are properly sealed. We recommend removal from your property only as a last resort.
It is one of the regulations (Ontario Regulation 99/90) that we have in place for all visitors to our properties. This is for the safety and consideration of all visitors as well as for the wildlife that lives in our Conservation Areas.
Free-running dogs can be intimidating to other visitors, especially small children and seniors. They also chase and disturb wildlife like frogs, snakes, birds, squirrels and deer. A major reason for having Conservation Areas is to protect habitat for wildlife.
If these are not adequate reasons for leashing you dog, consider that your dog can have unpleasant encounters with other dogs or with wildlife such as skunks or porcupines.
Also, deer ticks are present in some of our Conservation Areas. Keeping your dog on a leash and on the marked trails reduces the risk to your dog (and you) from being bitten by a tick.
Copies of floodplain mapping done by the CRCA, can be purchased at our office.
National Topographic Maps can be bought locally by checking the yellow pages of your telephone directory under “Maps” or from Natural Resources Canada in Ottawa.
Aerial photography can be purchased through the National Air Photo Library in Ottawa.
Ontario Base Maps are available through the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.
Other mapping options are provided on our Maps page.
During the winter when conditions permit, we maintain cross-country ski trails at Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area. You can get the latest conditions by calling (613) 546-4228 ext. 501 or toll-free (613 area code only) 1-877-956-CRCA (2722) ext. 501 during winter season.
We also maintain a skating rink and ski trails at Mac Johnson Wildlife Area in Brockville during the winter months. You can get the latest conditions by calling (613) 345-1990 during the winter.
Yes. There are fees for the following services:
- review of development applications and for permit applications
- tree planting services and tree orders
- school programs and day camps
- admission to Little Cataraqui Creek and Gould Lake Conservation Areas
- rental of the Little Cataraqui Creek Conservation Area Outdoor Centre
Fees are charged for copies of reports, floodplain maps and other documents. Fees are also charged for group bookings of Conservation Areas. Please call the CRCA Administration Office at (613) 546-4228 ext. 221 toll-free (613 area code only) 1-877-956-CRCA (2722) ext. 221 for details.
Funding for our programs and projects comes from several different sources. Most of the support for the CRCA is provided by our 11 member municipalities. Grants from the federal and provincial governments are also important. The rest of our revenues come from fundraising, user fees and donations. The amounts vary a bit each year. For an up-do-date version of our budget, visit our Who We Are page.
The CRCA also has summer and part-time positions available. These are posted on our Careers page as they become available.
Many of the lakes and rivers throughout the Cataraqui watershed have dams. These dams are operated by different agencies and companies for a variety of reasons including flood control, low flow augmentation, power generation, navigation and recreation.
Different water related issues are the responsibility of different local, provincial, and federal agencies.
– Conservation Authority, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
Regulations dealing with filling in a floodplain area
– Conservation Authority, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
Regulation dealing with the alternation to a watercourse
– Conservation Authority, Federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
– Conservation Authority, Federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Ontario Ministry of the Environment
Permit to Take Water
– Ontario Ministry of the Environment
Sediment release in water body
– Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Department of Fisheries and Oceans
Navigation issues on water bodies
– Coast Guard
Call (613) 546-4228 ext. 503 toll-free (613 area code only) 1-877-956-CRCA (2722) ext. 503 for a recorded message or call the Flood Duty Officer at ext. 504. If we are in a flood situation, this information will also be posted on the home page of this website.
The flooding is the responsibility of the person or agency that owns the land where the beaver dam is located.
I saw my neighbours working with a backhoe in the creek that runs along the back of our properties. Do they have a permit?
Permits for this type of work are issued by the Conservation Authority, Ministry of Natural Resources, and/or Department of Fisheries and Oceans. Contacting the CRCA office would confirm whether they have a permit or not.
Fish habitat includes all habitats that fish use during any part of their life cycle. This includes spawning, rearing, nursery, feeding and resting habitats. The nearshore areas along lakes and rivers are often the most important habitat areas for fish. This is something to keep in mind if you are proposing a dock, boathouse, shoreline stabilization or other project along the shoreline or in the water along your shoreline.
I have recently submitted a development application under the Planning Act to my local municipal office. Why is the Conservation Authority reviewing my application?
Regulations under the Planning Act require that Conservation Authorities review certain types of development applications. Planning staff of the CRCA provide recommendations to municipalities on these applications.
A fee applies to each review. These fees are paid by the applicant. Many municipalities within our jurisdiction use a screening guideline to make sure that the CRCA only reviews those applications we need to see.
CRCA staff review applications with an emphasis on natural heritage, natural hazards, water quality. Our intent is to reduce hazards to public health and safety, and to protect the quality of the natural environment for future generations. We try to provide reasonable and constructive recommendations, and to consider cumulative impacts on a watershed basis.
What is the status of my development (severance/minor variance/building permit/etc.) application to the CRCA?
A deadline for the submission of comments is generally set by the municipality when an application is circulated to the CRCA. Staff work to meet this deadline in as many cases as possible.