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White-tail Deer, Cougar, Walleye, Bees and Eels — what do these have in common? These are all projects of the Lanark County Stewardship Council and topics for our new monthly column in the Lanark Era called Hands-on Stewardship.

The Lanark County Stewardship Council is a unique organization: a volunteer, community-based Council which works with individuals and community groups committed to responsible environmental stewardship. We link landowners with information on best practices, expertise and modest resources for a wide-range of specific grassroots environmental initiatives.

The Council conducts many stewardship projects — the following is a glimpse into a few of these; future columns will each focus in-depth on a particular project or topic.

Wildlife habitat has been fragmented by roads, housing development and other human activity. For the last few years, the Council has worked with private landowners to plant trees to connect important wildlife areas, assisting the landowner in all aspects from planning to monitoring — creating important wildlife habitat corridors.

In February 2017, we hosted a workshop on the Wild Cats of Eastern Ontario, along with two tracking sessions with Sue Morse, a renowned photographer and wildlife ecologist specializing in big cats.

The Council works with a variety of community partners to rehabilitate Walleye spawning shoals, adding substrate and structure to existing and new spawning areas, including successful Walleye rehabilitation on Patterson and Dalhousie lakes.

Every year, the Council supports local high school students and teachers to participate in Envirothon. Envirothon is a team-based competition for high school students who love the outdoors. It’s an incubator for the environmental leaders of tomorrow, designed to prepare students for future green careers.

For more information contact, please contact Gord Harrison at info@lanarkstewardshipcouncil.ca