Timber Management Guidelines for the Protection foR Fish Habitat

If your logging operation has the potential to disturb fish habitat, due to the construction of trails that cross streams or logging near shorelines, you may require approval from the MNRF or your local Conservation Authority. A number of factors are involved, such as the size of the area being drained by a stream and the sensitivity of the fish species present, so you’ll need local expert advice.

On its website, the MNRF provides a downloadable document of the Timber Management Guidelines for the Protection of Fish Habitat. These guidelines, however, can’t always take local, specific situations into consideration so you’ll need experts to use their discretion to adapt the guidelines to your particular landscape.

In southern Ontario, conservation authorities are responsible for issuing permits related to land alterations affecting water. If your watershed is not managed by a conservation authority, contact your local MNRF office. Follow the links to contact your local MNRF office or your local Conservation Authority.

Regulations for Working Around Water

If you have a stream on your property or plan to harvest some lumber near a shoreline, you’ll need to become familiar with various regulations for working around water to know which laws might apply to your situation. To read a detailed description about careful logging practices around water, download the Landowner’s Guide to Careful Logging

The federal Fisheries Act was revised in 2012. The new prohibition will manage threats to fish that are part of or support commercial, recreational or Aboriginal fisheries with the goal of ensuring their productivity and ongoing sustainability. In Ontario, the beds of most lakes and many rivers and streams is considered public land and falls under the jurisdiction of the Ontario Public Lands Act. This Act is administered by MNRF and you can contact your local MNRF office to find out if you need a permit for any work you are doing that may impact Crown land.

 The Lakes and Rivers Improvement Act may require that you need a permit if you are planning to construct a stream crossing to skid logs out of your woodlot. Small or intermittent streams do not require approval if the area drained by the stream is less than 5 square kilometres. This Act is also administered by MNRF and permits are available from your local MNRF office.

Section 28 of the Conservation Authorities Act includes a number of regulations for working around water. Please contact your local Conservation Authority to find out whether a permit is required.

This project was undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada. | Ce projet a été réalisé avec l’appui financier du gouvernement du Canada.