Author Archives: draiggochkeith

Power boats and the safety of swimmers

Several dangerous incidents have been reported over the summer where power boats have had near misses with swimmers, even though they have been wearing bright hats or been towing a florescent float. Swimmers have often had to resort to frantically yelling and waving to attract the boater’s attention.

This is especially a problem in the narrows at the east end of North Otter, where there are several regular swimmers and boats often pass through at high speed. But swimmers, many of them children, can be found all around the lake.

So if you or your guests operate a boat it is your duty to be constantly vigilant and watching for swimmers and other water craft. And please keep your speed down; our lake is small and remember there is a legal limit in Ontario of 10 km/hr within 30 metres of the shore.

Thank you for making our lake a safe place for all of us to enjoy.

Following up on the 2022 AGM

List of residents and cottagers

The list of cottagers and residents around North and South Otter lakes has been revised. If you would like a copy (PDF) please email me. It is NSOLA’s policy that this information be restricted to NSOLA members and not made public.

This list is very useful to have, both to help you get to know your neighbours around the lake, and in case of emergency when you might need to contact someone urgently, be they at their cottage or elsewhere.

Keeping lists up to date is always difficult and there will already be errors in this list. Please help by sending any corrections to Mike Kramer who is maintaining the list for everyone’s benefit.

Lake Partner Program (LPP) water testing

Unfortunately the official LPP results for 2021 have not yet been published by the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. The latest information available is for years up to 2020. A summary of that data for North Otter Lake  is here. To search for the most up to date data at any time go the Ministry’s Map: Lake partner page.

There is a good overview of the LPP on the  FOCA website. From here there are links to the database of results covering all the tested Ontario lakes. For more details still, there is a very detailed 42 page FOCA report on the LPP.

Frontenac Park Updates

Park superintendent Ben Chabot’s update on what’s new and what’s happening in Frontenac Provincial Park is here.

Cataraqui Region Conservation Authority (CRCA) Dashboard

The CRCA have a new Lake Report Dashboard which is worth browsing for lots of information about all the lakes and surrounding land in the CRCA’s jurisdiction. Be warned though, the interface is not the easiest, and is best viewed on a large screen.

After effects of the gypsy moths

It was a relief to all of us that the gypsy moth invasion of 2020 and 2021 is behind us and we hope that the next peak is many years away and a lot less strong. This is an interesting little article about the effects the gypsy moths can have on lake quality and carbon emissions.

Keith Dunn, NSOLA webmaster
August 23, 2022
nsola@nsola.org

Notice of 2022 Annual General Meeting

Hello fellow members of the North & South Otter Lake Association

This year’s Annual General Meeting will be held on August 14, 2022 at 10 a.m. at the Frontenac Provincial Park picnic area, or indoors at the Park’s Trail Centre if it is raining.

Outdoors there are a few picnic tables to sit at, but for guaranteed seating please bring your own chair. Coffee will be served. Printed copies of the agenda and last year’s minutes will not be distributed.

The draft agenda is below. Please contact me if you would like to add something.

  1. President’s words of welcome
  2. Adoption of agenda
  3. Adoption of minutes of 2021 AGM
  4. Business arising from the minutes
  5. Treasurer’s report
  6. Changes to property / owners
  7. Water testing / web page
  8. Wildlife reports
  9. Speaker (TBA)
  10. Election of new officers
  11. Other business (Tydee Bins Subsidy Program)

The current members of the executive are:

President: Anita Dunn
Vice-President: Judy Tetlow
Secretary: Piper Huggins
Treasurer: Oriana Muzzin
Directors (members at large): Cam Kenny, Aaron Zimmerman
Past President: Peter Neumann

Under our constitution, the election of the executive is staggered. Each position has a two year term. This year we will hold elections at the AGM for the following positions: President, Treasurer, Director (Member at large).

A reminder from our treasurer, Oriana, that the annual membership dues ($10 per property) can be paid in the following ways:

  • In person, by cash or cheque at the AGM
  • Electronically, by sending an e-transfer for direct deposit to the NSOLA account to treasurer@nsola.org
  • By mailing a cheque to Oriana Muzzin, 15 Somerset Ave. , Toronto, ON, M6H 2R3

Looking forward to seeing you all at the park!

Anita Dunn
President, NSOLA
executive@nsola.org

Trapping beavers

At our AGM in August we discussed the beaver population in our lakes, the damage they do to shoreline trees and the possibility of controlling their numbers.

It was agreed that NSOLA would not, as a group, take part in any control, but would make available the name of a local trapper, so that any member who wishes can make his or her own arrangements.  This trapper’s name was provided by Simon Smith:

B.J. Hogan (goes by B.J.).  Phone:  613-214-2663. He can be texted or called at that number.

Anita Dunn
President, NSOLA
executive@nsola.org

Some items following up on the 2021 AGM

Lake Partner Program water testing

A summary of the water test results for North Otter Lake for the years up to 2020 (latest available) is here.

There is a good overview of the Lake Partner Program on the FOCA website at https://foca.on.ca/lake-partner-program-overview/. From here there are links to the database of results covering all the tested Ontario lakes.

Frontenac Park Updates

A report by Ben Chabot, Park Superintendent, on what’s new and what’s happening in Frontenac Provincial park is here.

The outdoor classroom project

At the AGM Simon Smith described plans for an outdoor classroom to be built very close to where we held the meeting. See here for an artist’s impression of the proposed structure. The project is being funded by The Friends of Frontenac Park; if you would like to donate you can do so in person at the Park Office, or at https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/the-friends-of-frontenac-park/

Survey about the usage of the Cataraqui Trail

The Friends of the Cataraqui are asking local residents and visitors to complete a survey about the use of the Cataraqui Trail. Please see here for more details.

Map of the Otter Lake area

Mike Kramer brought to the AGM a large map of the Otter Lake. If you are interested in looking at it there is a PDF (just taken from a photo) available here.

Keith Dunn, NSOLA webmaster
nsola@nsola.org

Notice of 2021 Annual General Meeting

This year’s Annual General Meeting will be held on August 8, 2021 at 10 a.m., at the Frontenac Provincial Park picnic area, rain or shine.

In keeping with public health guidelines, the meeting will be held outdoors, and is a ‘bring your own chair & coffee’ event. Printed copies of the agenda and last year’s minutes will not be distributed.

The draft agenda is below. Please contact me if you would like to add something.

  1. Introduction (Anita)
  2. Adoption of minutes of 2020 AGM (Piper)
  3. Business arising from the minutes
  4. Treasurer’s report (Oriana)
  5. Changes to property / owners (Mike Kramer)
  6. Water testing / web page (Keith Dunn)
  7. Wildlife and loon raft (Judy)
  8. Gypsy moths (Judy)
  9. Election of new officers (Anita)
  10. Other business

The current members of the executive are:

President: Anita Dunn
Vice-President: Judy Tetlow
Secretary: Piper Huggins
Treasurer: Oriana Muzzin
Directors (members at large): Cam Kenny, Aaron Zimmerman
Past President: Peter Neumann

Under our constitution, the election of the executive is staggered. Each position has a two year term. This year we will hold elections at the AGM for the following positions: treasurer, director, director.

A reminder from our treasurer, Oriana, that the annual membership dues ($10 per property) can now be paid in the following ways:

  • In person, by cash or cheque at the AGM
  • Electronically, by sending an e-transfer for direct deposit to the NSOLA account to treasurer@nsola.org
  • By mailing a cheque to Oriana Muzzin, 15 Somerset Ave. , Toronto, ON, M6H 2R3

Looking forward to seeing you all at the park!

Anita Dunn
President, NSOLA
executive@nsola.org

2021 AGM and Gypsy Moths

2021 Annual General Meeting

Like everyone I’ve been monitoring the constantly changing COVID situation, and the regulations being imposed by the Ontario government. I am currently hoping that we can hold our AGM outdoors at Frontenac Provincial Park on Sunday August 8, 2021.

The current opening-up plans seem to indicate this will be possible, and I very much look forwards to being able to meet up with everyone then. But the situation is very dynamic, so the date remains provisional. I will email everyone once we can confirm the arrangements.

Gypsy moths

The summer of 2020 will be remembered around here not just for COVID, but also for the invasion of gypsy moths. Already this spring we’ve been bugged by the tiny caterpillars blowing in the wind on their long strands of silk, landing in our hair and in some cases causing allergic reactions due to their tiny hairs. And some trees have already started to show significant signs of damage.

Predators and naturally occurring viruses and fungi will eventually control the population explosion. We can’t tell at this time whether 2021 will better or worse than 2020, but there are indications it will be another bad year. We are all worried about the effect this infestation has on the health of our tress. There are some steps that can be taken if you have just a few trees to protect, but most of us around the lake here are custodians of small forests, and all we can do is hope and wait for the gypsy moth population to naturally decline and for the trees to recover.

There are many sources of information on the web. Ross Sutherland our local councillor recommended this article from the city of Hamilton which is a good starting point for information. The Ontario MNRF page on Gypsy Moths is also very informative, and contains maps showing the 2020 infestations and predictions for 2021.

Anita Dunn
President, NSOLA
executive@nsola.org

Birch Bark Canoe Build, Kingston’s Inner Harbour

Our September canoe build project is planned for this September 7-27, 2020 in Kingston’s Inner Harbour, and I thought this might be of interest to many fellow NSOLA members.

For details please visit https://www.friendsofinnerharbour.com/cataraqui-boatyard-project-2020/

We are now partnering with Pytor Hodgson of 3things.ca Indigenous consulting and his Facebook event page Come Walk With Us… Following the Saturday, September 26 programming, he will host a two-hour live-streamed Facebook event in the evening highlighting the days events.  It will also include pre-recorded video segments of the build, interviews, teachings, a panel of Algonquin knowledge keepers and entertainment. It will also be available afterwards for those who couldn’t make either the event or the live-streamed show.  He has an audience of over 850,000 across Canada!

The Saturday event itself will include some programming (tbd), a free venison chili feast, a blessing and launch of the canoe and the chance for visitors to get out on the water in one of three authentic birch bark canoes.

In addition, on the Sunday, we are partnering with TruNorthAid to do a Reconciliation Walk in addition to programming and getting out on the water in birch bark canoes.

As it will be World Rivers Day we are thinking of programming related to the water. Despite COVID, things are coming together nicely.

Please feel free to share with family, friends, colleagues and cottagers and anyone else you think might be interested. Hope you can come too.

Mary Farrar,
President, Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour
http://www.friendsofinnerharbour.com
613-544-1246
inverarymary@yahoo.com

Notes and links relating to the 2020 AGM

Lake Partner Program – LPP

There are two measurement points. Site 1 is in the arm of North Otter that connects the Salmon Lake Road culvert and the rest of the lake (opposite the Evans’ property). Site 2 is near the Scout camp. Both sites measure around the middle/deepest part of the lake.

North Otter Lake phosphorous levels
https://www.ontario.ca/environment-and-energy/total-phosphorus-report?id=71010001
https://www.ontario.ca/environment-and-energy/total-phosphorus-report?id=71010002

North Otter Lake Secchi depths
https://www.ontario.ca/environment-and-energy/secchi-depth-report?id=71010001
https://www.ontario.ca/environment-and-energy/secchi-depth-report?id=71010002

About the LPP
https://desc.ca/programs/LPP

CRCA Lake Fact Sheet for North Otter lake
https://www.crca.ca/wp-content/uploads/PDFs/LakeReports/2017-FactSheet-NorthOtterLake.pdf

Cyanobacteria (Blue-Green Algae)

The Kingston Field Naturalists (KFN) has recently put online a workshop on blue-green algae (BGA). It was made by a KFN member and two Queens students and consists of two videos on YouTube. The first covers mainly research into BGA and runs for 53 minutes, and the second deals with identifying different cyanobacteria and runs for 20 minutes.

These are particularly relevant as they cover research carried out at Queens on nearby Dog Lake. Some of the content is quite technical, but there is a lot to learn if you are interested.

The videos are:
https://youtu.be/FaXU-UfYnlE Cyanobacteria (Blue-Green Algae, BGA) workshop
https://youtu.be/q098ePKib5A Using your foldscope to identify blue-green algae (BGA) blooms.

Otter Lake Binder Records

The Otter Lake Binder Records contain an informal record of the state of Otter Lake and its natural history, as reported by NSOLA members at each AGM.

If you were not able to fill out the form at the AGM and would like to add your observations to the record, the blank form is available here. Please download the form and when completed email it to Pam Wheaton (the address is on the form).

Gypsy Moths

South Frontenac published this page of information and further web links on July 15, 2020.
https://www.southfrontenac.net//modules/news/index.aspx?newsId=34c304a5-58b0-49c7-bdd8-06782d4de3d3

Here are a few photos I took this year of the various stages of the gypsy moth
https://dunn.ca/flora_fauna/insects/gypsy_moth/gypsy_moth.html

This 70 page document, Predators of the Gypsy Moth, was published over 40 years ago by the USDA. I’m sure some of the information is outdated, but I found it interesting to read the role that many native creatures have in controlling the gypsy moth.
https://naldc.nal.usda.gov/download/CAT87713600/PDF

Keith Dunn
NSOLA webmaster and LPP volunteer
nsola@nsola.org

IMPORTANT UPDATE: Annual General Meeting – Sunday August 9, 2020

Dear Residents, Cottagers and Members

Good news! With the relaxing of COVID-19 rules in Ontario, Frontenac Provincial Park has now given us permission to hold our AGM outdoors in the park.

The time is unchanged – Sunday morning, August 9, 2020 at 10 a.m. The location is the picnic area next to the park headquarters.

I know this will please many people as the Zoom format is difficult for those spending time around the lake without internet access. But I also appreciate that we will miss some members who cannot physically get here this year, especially those of you affected by closed borders – we look forward to seeing you again as soon as conditions allow.

The park will provide some picnic tables and garbage cans. The composting toilets will be open and the water tap will be functioning. But nobody will be allowed access to the main building. We will not be able to provide the coffee, tea and cookies that we usually do.

We will be holding this meeting rain or shine. A postponement will only be made in case of lightning making conditions unsafe.

Yes, there are  COVID-19 restrictions – by now you should know them!

  • Please maintain social distancing – 2m apart.
  • Wear a face covering, something you can talk through.
  • Bring hand sanitizer.

Also

  • Bring your own chairs if possible
  • Bring your own snacks/drinks
  • Bring an umbrella if it is raining

And a reminder that we are looking for people interested in joining the Executive. We meet casually a couple of times a year to discuss issues relating to our community and region, whether environmental, social, or political. This is not a large commitment, but it is important in ensuring that we can monitor, and if necessary intervene in, any affairs which might affect our lakes and our residents. If you would like to know more please contact me.

We look forward seeing as many of you as possible!

Anita Dunn
President, NSOLA
executive@nsola.org