Fall 2016 Update

As our organization grows, we feel it is important to share with you what we are working on, and how we are working toward our goals and vision.  We hope to post regular updates throughout the year to keep members and friends aware of our projects, programs and activities.

jijuktukwejk-watershed-alliance-logoOver the summer, the Alliance has been meeting monthly, with 8-12 people attending meetings when they can.  Members learn about our meetings through Facebook, the Grapevine, radio announcements, this website and other means.  Our meetings are loosely structured, with a review of any past work or discussions, and then updates and discussions.  Our discussions have focused on the name of the group, the vision and mission which form the base of our strategic plan, and also are the foundation of our incorporation as a non-profit society in Nova Scotia.  Meetings are open to everyone who is interested in learning about the river.  We have also developed a logo for the group, which is shown here.

In addition to these meetings, we also hosted a group paddle down the river in July, with more than 10 people putting canoes in at Lovett Road and floating down the river together.  The group enjoyed the scenery and talked about the plants, trees, fish and other conditions along their path.

As our capacity is currently low for research at this time, we are actively looking for ways to learn more about the watershed.  We have been fortunate to have connected with several groups who are already doing research on the Jijuktu’kwejk watershed this season, and we are helping them in any way we can.  The Mikmaw Conservation Group is starting a two-year project exploring the impact of pesticides and other contaminants on the river.  They are collecting samples and are reviewing data from the Friends of the Cornwallis River over the past decade, as well as using other datasets to look for long term trends.  They have connected with the Annapolis Valley First Nation to learn more about traditional uses and sacred places along the river, and the impact of pollutants on these activities and places.  As the MCG is launching their study, McCallum Environmental is finishing up their study of prioritizing wetland restoration sites along the north mountain of the watershed.  This project is extremely valuable to our work in the future- as we hope to be able to apply for funding to restore some of the high priority wetlands, when our capacity allows it.  During their public consultation we were able to share datasets and maps with them that greatly improved their study.  Finally, we are meeting with academic advisors at Dalhousie and Acadia Universities to engage with a student or group of students to start summarizing the research that exists for the watershed.  We are hopeful that a student project will be able to synthesize the large amount of data that exists from government and various research groups over the past ten years.  All of these research projects will help us understand the past and present health of the watershed.  To protect and restore this watershed, we must first understand it.

Please plan to attend our next meeting- we look forward to meeting new friends of the Jijuktu’kwejk River!


Jennifer West

Alliance Coordinator

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