Category Archives: General

Farming for the Future: Young Farmers at Work in Roseau River Watershed February 16th, 2018

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Livestock producers in the Roseau River watershed are farming for the future in partnership with Seine-Rat River Conservation District (SRRCD). They are innovative young families enhancing their farming operations with environmentally sustainable livestock management initiatives, like alternative watering systems, exclusion fencing, and livestock crossings.

Alternative watering systems provide livestock with a safe, clean, and reliable source of drinking water. They use a solar or wind powered pump to draw water from nearby water sources. These systems are used to restrict livestock access to surface water, such as dugouts, rivers, and streams. Fencing off dugouts and waterways can reduce the risk of herd health problems relating to direct watering, like fluke worm, foot rot, and other water borne diseases. Exclusion fencing can also prevent injury or death caused by livestock falling through ice or getting stuck, drowning, or suffocating in muddy rivers and ponds. Livestock crossings allow cattle to safely cross waterways without disturbing the natural flow of water or the vegetated area along waterways known as riparian zones. Riparian livestock management protects waterways from erosion, sedimentation, and loss of riparian vegetation from constant grazing. Programs for establishing alternative watering systems, exclusion fencing, and livestock crossings prevent cattle from drinking water contaminated with manure. They also reduce nutrients, like phosphorus and nitrogen, flowing downstream into Lake Winnipeg.

Livestock producers in the Roseau River watershed are looking for sustainable ways to keep the farm in the family. They are recognizing opportunities for lowering the cost of production by reducing risks to herd health and improving water quality for future generations. Local farmers working in partnership with the SRRCD implemented several riparian livestock management programs in the Roseau River watershed. The projects implemented by the SRRCD are initiated at the local level by people whose livelihoods are deeply connected to the landscape. These innovate projects are custom designed to benefit the unique needs of each farm and to improve the health of our watershed.

The Marynowski family installed a fencing enclosure to limit livestock access to their dugout area. The enclosure also includes additional room for bale storage. The family drilled a well at their own expense to provide a reliable drinking water source to their 150 cattle during the winter and summer months. This alternative watering system draws water from the well using a solar powered pump. The system also has an option for allowing the farmer to use a smartphone app for remotely monitoring parameters, like pump output.

The Schubert exclusion fencing project was implemented to keep cattle out of a flood-prone riparian area, which regularly overflowed water beyond the existing fence line. The Schuberts drilled a well, at their own expense, on a nearby ridge and moved the herd’s watering area to higher ground. The family is now looking into upgrading their existing solar watering system by incorporating a wind turbine to better accommodate overcast weather conditions.

The Barnabe family from Woodmore implemented an alternative watering system for their expanding livestock operation with 220 head of cattle. The system draws water from a nearby gravel pit during the winter and summer months.

The Chubaty alternative watering system near Ridgeville is an all-season project, which provides safe and reliable access to 150 calf/cow pairs and is the second project undertaken by the Chubaty family in the last five (5) years.

The Abrams solar winter watering system and exclusion fencing project currently accommodates 30-40 head of cattle. The family is looking to expand their livestock operation as part of a larger farm improvement plan.

The Boileau family incorporated numerous on-farm improvements to their 140 calf/cow pair farming operation. The Boileau’s installed exclusion fencing on three (3) dugouts and implemented a well head remediation project to improve the conditions of the existing well structure.

The success of these riparian livestock management projects have spread throughout the district by word-of-mouth advertising. The SRRCD is looking forward to implementing more projects with local producers throughout our watershed.

The SRRCD provides funding for riparian livestock management projects, including:

  • Alternative watering (waterway protection), 75% SRRCD contribution up to $7,500
  • Riparian fencing (waterway protection), 75% SRRCD contribution up to $4,000
  • Livestock crossing improvement, 75% SRRCD contribution up to $1,000
  • Alternative watering (groundwater protection), 50% SRRCD contribution up to $5,000
  • Exclusion fencing (groundwater protection), 75% SRRCD contribution up to $1,000
  • Grant writing to help you cover 100% of qualifying projects

The SRRCD encourages producers to apply as soon as possible for available funding. The SRRCD is available at our Steinbach office by telephone at (204) 326-1030, or in Vita at (204) 425-7877. You can also visit us online at www.srrcd.ca to download your applications today.

Bringing Outdoor Learning to Life at Tourond Creek Discovery Centre November 21st, 2017

Posted in: General

Educators across the Southeast are going outside with their students to make real world connections to classroom learning. Barret Miller, Special Programs Interpreter at Fort Whyte Alive, spends much of his time exploring the outdoors with students and educators across Manitoba. He is part of a movement of community organizations, including FortWhyte Alive, South Central Eco Institute, Seine-Rat River Conservation District (SRRCD), and Tourond Creek Discovery Centre (TCDC) that are partnering with Hanover School Division to promote opportunities for outdoor education. Teachers are keen to learn about using outdoor environments to make linkages with the school curriculum.

Barret specializes in helping educators make the most of outdoor learning opportunities. He tells a story about an experience he had while taking a group of students on a field trip to a nearby park. The group of students barely hiked 20 metres before becoming enthralled by a bluff of trees. Barret says the excited group spent over an hour exploring the bluff and discovering its wonders of life. The little bluff offered so many opportunities for teaching ecology that the group hardly had time for the rest of the hike.

Community organizations, like FortWhyte Alive, South Central Eco Institute, SRRCD, and TCDC make the most of experiential learning opportunities in the great outdoors.

Kent Lewarne runs the Riverwatch program at South Central Eco Institute. Riverwatch is a program linking the classroom study of chemistry, the nitrogen cycle, and environmental issues to real world understanding of watershed health pertaining to Lake Winnipeg. Students involved in all aspects of water quality testing help collect and analyze water samples and learn about what the results mean for our watershed.

Dorthea Grégoire at SRRCD runs the Backwater Buggin’ program. The program focuses on community ecology, biological diversity, and the importance of insect communities in monitoring ecosystem and waterway health. Students participating in Backwater Buggin’ gain hands-on experience by collecting and analyzing bug samples to learn more about the health of our rivers and streams and the different types of insect communities that live in our waterways.

The expertise of these community organizations empower educators to bring environmental education to life at places such as the Tourond Creek Discovery Centre. The TCDC is a public space and natural environment in the RM of Hanover. It is visited by families, nature-lovers, and school groups in the Southeast. Visitors come to the TCDC to discover the diversity of plant and animal life unique to the five distinct micro-ecosystems at the centre. Students and educators using the site as an outdoor classroom experience our connectedness to nature by encountering the natural systems vital to our sustainability.

Kathryn Labiuk is one of four teachers at Steinbach Regional Secondary School who took advantage of outdoor learning opportunities at TCDC during the school’s innovation week. Kathryn says, “The Tourond Creek Discovery Centre is a great local option for allowing students to encounter the outdoors with a fresh perspective. The space provides opportunities for students to engage in cross-curricular learning in an environment that encourages group interactions.”

Educators, like Kathryn, are taking the lead on outdoor education by making real world connections to the school curriculum at TCDC. The outdoor learning potential at TCDC provides endless possibilities for experiential learning.

You can call or email the SRRCD for more information about the programs we offer or to book your TCDC visit. Visit us online at www.srrcd.ca, or at www.tourondcreekdiscovery.ca.

Part-Time Bookkeeper Wanted May 24th, 2016

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The Seine-Rat River Conservation District (SRRCD) is accepting applications from qualified individuals for part time bookkeeping

Duties and qualifications include:
Reporting to the SRRCD District Manager, the successful applicant will be responsible for finance including basic accounting in accordance with generally acceptable accounting principles (GAAP) and financial audit procedures. Responsibilities include payroll, basic bookkeeping, monthly financial reporting, charitable contribution management, and other general financial tasks.

The preferred applicant will have excellent English communication and interpersonal skills, experience with SAGE 50 and Microsoft Office computer software and hold a diploma/degree in business administration or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

The position will be located in the SRRCD main office located in La Broquerie, Manitoba. The SRRCD is a non-profit charitable organization that offers competitive wages and a healthy work environment.

Interested applicants may submit a cover letter and resume with wage expectations before Friday, June 3rd, 2016 to:

Seine-Rat River Conservation District
123 Rue Simard, Box 339 La Broquerie, MB R0A 0W0
Phone: 204-424-5845 Fax: 204-424-5909 Email: manager@srrcd.ca
The SRRCD would like to thank all applicants for their interest; however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

2016 RM Well Water Testing Days  May 9th, 2016

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The SEINE-RAT RIVER CONSERVATION DISTRICT will be assisting residents who would like to have their private WELL WATER tested for the presence of E.coli
and Coliform bacteria for $21.26 (tax incl.) per sample, ONLY cash or cheque.

Please make cheques payable to: Horizon Lab Ltd.
Water bottles & application forms can be picked up in advance at your RM office; however, water samples must be taken on the same day of the drop-off and submitted
with completed application and chain of custody forms prior to 11:00 am (and prior to 10am in Vassar) on the first Thursday of each month throughout the summer:

May 12th, June 9th,  July 14th, August 11th, September 8th

Drop-off locations:
SRRCD office, 123 Simard St. – La Broquerie
R.M. of Ste. Anne office, 395 Traverse Road – Ste. Anne
R.M. of Hanover office, 28 Westland Dr. – Steinbach
R.M. of DeSalaberry office, 466 Sabourin St. – St. Pierre-Jolys
Town of Niverville office, 86 Main St. – Niverville
R.M of Taché office, 1294 Dawson Rd. – Lorette
R.M of Ritchot office, 352 Main Street – St. Adolphe
R.M of Stuartburn, (SRRCD office), 108 Main Street N – Vita
R. M of Franklin office, 115 Waddell Ave. East—Dominion City
R.M of Piney office, 6092 Boundary St. – Vassar

Feel free to contact the SRRCD office for details:
La Broquerie (204) 424-5845 Vita (204) 425-7877
manager@srrcd.ca