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2015 MCDA Tour hosted by the Lasalle Redboine CD

As part of Laura Blunden’s summer experience with the Watershed Systems Research Program (WSRP), she played an instrumental role in partnering with various stakeholders and was fortunate to attend the Manitoba Conservation District Association’s (MCDA) tour. The tour was held on June 16, 2015 by the LaSalle Redboine Conservation District for the Pelly’s Lake watershed management project. During the tour, conservation and municipal officials opened the culvert gates that released water held from spring melt at Pelly’s Lake. The LaSalle Redboine Conservation District built the Pelly’s Lake dam last year in collaboration with many landowners who donated portions of their property for the project. This initiative allows the valley to back flood and mimic how the water would naturally flow over the landscape over time. The slower flow reduces flooding, improves habitat protection, and allows for cattails to take up the phosphorous from the water. The water is held in Pelly’s Lake wetland as part of a water management strategy in which every year approximately 5,000 kg of phosphorous are prevented from draining into Lake Winnipeg through the use of cattails. The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) performed a cattail harvesting demonstration during the tour where participants learned about the uses of harvested cattails, including transforming them into biofuels and soil amendment products; meaning farmers no longer have to import soil amendment products from such long distances. CTV was present on site to conduct a news report of the event, which can be seen here:

Tour visiting Pelly's Lake Dam
Tour visiting Pelly’s Lake Dam
Pelly's Lake Dam
Pelly’s Lake Dam
Justin Reid and Colby Desender from LaSalle Redboine Conservation District
Justin Reid and Colby Desender from LaSalle Redboine Conservation District