Event Follow Up: January Beach Clean Up!

Thank you to everyone who came out to Harbourville and Long Beach to help clean up these beautiful shores!  We were around 40 people in total who picked up lots of rope, fishing gear, water bottles, household waste, and many surprising treasures that shouldn’t be in the ocean.  Thank you – we will host another clean up in the spring!

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2020 – Starting Fresh!

It’s a new year and we are starting fresh!

This past year has been another one for the books!  The Alliance had a fantastic summer student who partnered with the Mikmaw Conservation Group to learn about the watershed, the river, and the Bay of Fundy.  Angelica had a great time and is going back to university full of passion for this amazing valley ecosystem.  We are still going through her work and learning lots of neat things about the state of the river, including a calculation of unwanted fertilizers flowing into the river.

2019 has also been a time to reflect on our work and the direction we are taking to restore the Cornwallis (Jijuktu’kwejk) River.  We are SO EXCITED to be bringing new faces and new energy into the watershed alliance this year.  We already have some great events planned, including a garbage pick up in January.  We hope you will come out to these events and meet some like minded people, learn a bit about the watershed, and help us restore the river.

There has been some sad news in 2019 about the accumulation of garbage in the beautiful Bay of Fundy, as well as our own work calculating excess fertilizers flowing into the Cornwallis (Jijuktu’kwejk) River.   We thought we would have a garbage pick up that helped us start the year off on the right (green) foot, and helped clean the Fundy shoreline.  We hope you can come out to this and many of our other events!

  • January 4, 2020
  • 2:00pm to 4:00pm
  • (January 11, storm date)
  • Long Beach (Baxters Harbour): Meet just west of the intersection of Long Beach Road and Old Baxter Mill Road.
  • Harbourville Beach (Harbourville): Meet at the parking lot near the fish store and the restaurant!

Dress warm, enjoy the sun, and pick up as much marine garbage as you can with friends and neighbours!  We will supply bags and will contact Valley Waste to pick up our bags.

Thanks for your support, and have a happy holiday!

The Watershed Alliance team

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Summer 2019… Here We Come!

If you know a young person who would be interested in an amazing summer experience learning about and helping to restore the Cornwallis (Jijuktu’kwejk) River, send this along to them today!

We are looking forward to an amazing summer program this year in collaboration with the Annapolis Valley First Nation, the Mikmaw Conservation Group and our friends at the Clean Annapolis River Program!




Summer Student Research Assistant

The Jijuktu’kwejk (gee-gee-wok-tok) Watershed Alliance is a partnership of citizens and communities from Berwick to Wolfville in Kings County Nova Scotia, with the common vision of a healthy and sustainable natural environment, and a swimmable, drinkable and fishable Cornwallis (Jijuktu’kwejk) River. The organization was formed in 2016 and has a strategic plan and a strong volunteer board of directors who are working to achieve this vision. For more information about the Alliance, please visit https://jijuktukwejkwatershedalliance.wordpress. com/ and www.facebook.com/JijuktukwejkWatershed/

Job Description/Responsibilities:

The Alliance is hiring a 15-week student for the summer to work on 2 projects (1 being dependent upon funding). Responsibilities may include:

  • Travel to field sites along the Bay of Fundy
  • Assisting with tidal barrier assessments and audits
  • Assessing freshwater streams for barriers
  • Conducting assessments on the Cornwallis River (areas of damage/degradation, evidence of turtle nesting, notable species)
  • Visual surveys for Wood Turtles and suitable Wood Turtle habitat
  • Planning and conducting community outreach events on the Wood Turtle
  • Various other tasks


  • The applicant must be between 15 and 30 years of age on the start date of the job
  • The applicant must have been a full-time student during the previous academic year and be intending to return to full-time studies in the next academic year
  • The applicant must be a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident, or a refugee under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and be legally entitled to work according to relevant provincial legislation and regulations.
  • The applicant must have a valid drivers licence and have daily access to a vehicle.
  • Interest in the conservation field (experience an asset)

Remuneration: Depending on grants received, interns will receive $15/hour at 35 hours per week. A travel allowance will be provided for driving to field sites

To apply:

Send a resume and cover letter describing why you are interested in this position and tell us about your experience with environmental & scientific research, First Nations culture, Annapolis Valley, and the Jijuktu’kwejk River (experience in these areas are considered an asset but are not required).

Please send them in one document to:

John Brazner, Jijuktu’kwejk Watershed Alliance

By post to: 1181 Russia Road, Black Rock, NS B0P 1V0

By email to: johnbrazner@eastlink.ca

Deadline: 12:00 pm May 10, 2019

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Support our Summer Programs!

This week, former summer intern Alex Young writes a guest post for you!  Please make a donation today so we can continue to give students an amazing experience, all while working to restore the beautiful Cornwallis (Jijuktu’kwejk) River!  Click on the “Make a Donation” button on the right!

Hello there, my name is Alex Young. I am a former summer student of the Jijuktu’kwejk Watershed Alliance (2017). Working for the JWA was one of the greatest experiences I have ever had. My colleagues and I were offered great flexibility and were given our own initiative that summer. There was a lot of trust, but also an open line of communication between the students and Jennifer West, our coordinator. The job itself consisted of mostly field work, but with some office work as well. Fortunately, we had a fair amount of choice when it came to time to choose which days to do which task.  There were many different outdoor activities over the summer. There was plenty of hiking along the riverbanks, and we also learned how to canoe, and took a few trips down the river ourselves. We consulted with experts and got the public engaged with restoring the Jijuktu’kwejk Watershed to a usable, swimmable, fishable river. We also collected as much information as we could on the watershed over the summer, which ultimately made a difference in figuring out how to best restore the river for future generations. I became so invested in the project, that I continued with research into the academic year to try to discover the cause of high levels of E. coli in some areas of the river. I was able to give the JWA data on the levels of E. coli throughout over the seasons. It felt amazing to be able to make a such a difference. Overall, working for the Jijuktu’kwejk Watershed Alliance was an extraordinary experience, and a fine choice for a summer job!



Alex Young

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Paddle the River With Us!

Join is for an easy float and paddle down the beautiful Cornwallis River! Our wonderful summer students will lead a paddle starting at a location in Coldbrook, details to come soon! Bring your canoes, some paddles and lots of friends and let the experts lead you down the river for a few hours. Feel free to bring a donation to the Alliance too, or to become a member! Stay tuned for more details, but please plan to paddle with us and get to know the river!

August 4, 9am.  (tentative start location) Coldbrook Lions Club Parking Lot, South Bishop Road.

Bring your canoe and paddles, water and a snack for your trip.  Students will be able to help shuttle cars to the end of the paddle route at Lovett Road.

The route will start at South Bishop Road and will end at Lovett Road in Coldbrook.  See maps below.  More information will be posted here as the students prepare for logistics for the event!

Please let us know you will attend through Facebook or by emailing jijuktukwejk@gmail.com

See you there!

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We’re Ready to Grow!

Hi there, thanks for stopping by! We are working really hard and your encouragement and support keeps us going every day!

The Jijuktu’kwejk Watershed Alliance is more than two years old, and we are ready to take the next BIG step to help restore the Cornwallis River! This year we plan to hire our first full time staff- they will be doing all the things we haven’t quite been able to get to- launching public programs, coordinating volunteer events, writing grants for more projects and more staff, and generally doing all the great things that will help restore the Cornwallis River! It’s very exciting but a lot of work- we want to make sure we are ready for a person to come on board and start doing great work as soon as possible!

Before that happens, we are having a great time with our three summer interns. Angelica, Mark and Nikki started with us on June 18 and will have 10 weeks to cover projects such as:

  • water quality assessments at 10 sites
  • learning about the sewage treatment plants along the river
  • visiting potential wetland restoration sites around the watershed with McCallum Environmental
  • modelling pesticide application to agricultural lands and potential inputs into the river
  • searching for rare and sensitive wood turtle habitat
  • and much more!!!
  • They are a fantastic team and have hit the ground running! This week they were being trained on their new equipment on loan from the Community Based Environmental Monitoring Network in Halifax.

We are so happy to have your support- can we ask you to renew your membership and help us reach our funding goal for our new staff member? Last year our wonderful members contributed $635 to the Alliance, and we are hoping to increase that through some new grants, and also by sharing our work with lots of new people in the valley. If you are able, please consider a membership and donation, but if you are not able, please share our work with your friends, family, and colleagues, and anyone else who cares about the Cornwallis (Jijuktu’kwejk) River!

Most Sincerely and Gratefully,
Jennifer West

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Movie: Plastic Ocean

June 8th is World Oceans Day and we are presenting a very important movie called “Plastic Ocean” to bring more awareness about what we throw out, what gets into the river and what is filling up our oceans.

Friday June 8th, 5:30-7:30pm.  Berwick Library.  Food and drinks provided.

A PLASTIC OCEAN begins when journalist Craig Leeson, searching for the elusive blue whale, discovers plastic waste in what should be pristine ocean. In this adventure documentary, Craig teams up with free diver Tanya Streeter and an international team of scientists and researchers, and they travel to twenty locations around the world over the next four years to explore the fragile state of our oceans, uncover alarming truths about plastic pollution, and reveal working solutions that can be put into immediate effect.

This is a joint presentation of the Jijuktuk’wejk Watershed Alliance, North Mountain Coffee, Valley Regional Waste Management, the Clean Annapolis River Project, and the Annapolis Valley Regional Library in Berwick.

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May 22, 2018: Restoring Habitat for a Healthier River

Please join us for our annual gathering where we will learn about habitat and wetlands from a local expert, and also hear about how the Watershed Alliance did in 2017!

Restoring Habitat for a Healthier River
Annual Gathering of the Jijuktu’kwejk Watershed Alliance
May 22, 38 Cornwallis Street, Kentville NS
Improving the Cornwallis River health through habitat restoration: what are the best opportunities for landowners to make a difference?  Meghan Milloy from McCallum Environmental will be speaking about wetlands and watershed health, followed by discussion about the River and the Jijuktu’kwejk (gee-gee-wok-tok) Watershed Alliance!  A short business meeting will follow to share the annual report.
Please visit our Facebook page and let us know if you are coming!  Please share our Facebook event and this email with your friends and family!
We look forward to seeing you, and celebrating our successes together!Australian
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Flying Squirrel Adventures!


Theme: Getting to know the Ravine

Join us for an exploration of the Kentville Ravine on April 21st, 10 am

On our first get-together, we’ll be exploring the Ravine and getting to know the plants and animals that make it their home.  Retired biology professor Soren Bondrup-Nielsen will be leading the adult programming stream on a walk along the Ravine trails and sharing some of its hidden and not so hidden gems.

The children’s programming stream will also be on a ‘getting- to-know-the-Ravine adventure’ but at a different pace with program facilitators, Emily LeGrand and Marina Myra.

Meeting point: by the upper trailhead parking lot behind the Research Station  (see map)

Flying Squirrel Adventures is open to anyone with an interest in being outside, active and learning about nature.  Each session starts with all ages combined in a sharing circle where we chat about the plan for the day.  Depending on the themes and topics to be explored, the group will do some activities together before breaking into a children’s stream and an adult stream.  At the end of the session, the two groups come back together to share their experiences.

Find out more: https://valleyflyingsquirrel.wordpress.com/

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April 12: Sniffer Dogs as Conservation Assistants!

You won’t believe it- you can use DOGS to find rare and sensitive species (no they don’t eat them)!  This will be a relaxed talk and presentation by Dr. Simon Gadbois- he will share some stories about challenges and opportunities of using dogs to help some species recover.  Discussion with the audience will be encouraged after his talk!

The sniffer dog as a (re)search assistant for the field naturalist

Simon Gadbois ~ Canid Behaviour Research Team, Dalhousie University

Wildlife Conservation Canines: Sounds crazy? Simon Gadbois had been studying canids (members of the dog family) since 1992. When the Canadian Centre for Wolf Research closed in 2007, he focused his attention on domestic dogs as research assistants in the field. Since 2009, he has been involved in a number of projects where dogs helped finding wildlife or their signs in their natural environment, including species at risk and invasive species. About half a dozen dogs have been actively involved in projects looking for Ribbon Snakes, Wood Turtles, Blanding’s Turtles, Eastern Coyotes, Brown Spruce Longhorn Beetles, Carcasses of bats and birds at wind farm sites, etc. Dr. Gadbois will discuss the different projects from the past decade as well as the challenges and problems associated with training, breeds, target species and the human factor.

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