Dedicated to keeping Charleston Lake beautiful in every way.
CLA LAUNCHES "LET'S GET THE LEAD OUT" INITIATIVE
Lead-based fishing tackle can be fatal to Loons and other aquatic wildlife, when ingested from fish or the lake bottom. There is low awareness of this risk among Anglers. Lead-free tackle performs identically to lead-based tackle, but can be difficult to identify and purchase at retail.
CLA has decided to act, and is proud to announce its "Let's Get the Lead Out" initiative. Modelled on a successful program at nearby Wolfe Lake, the initiative will include increased awareness and information and awareness, direct engagement with Anglers (including free "grab bags" of lead-free tackle), and a program to increase availability of lead-free tackle at local retailers. (Click to read more about lead-free fishing Stay tuned for more information on this great initiative
Shoal markers are now in. Many thanks to "Buoy Boys": Marty Ruk, Brent Moulton, Derek King, and Cody Johnston.
2022 WATER QUALITY RESULTS - Now available
In the summer of 2022, 42 phosphorus samples and water clarity recordings were collected over the period of May 25 to Oct 30th from 7 basins. Once again, Charleston Lake experienced excellent water clarity. Click to see the full report.
TEMPORARY BASS SANCTUARIES PROPOSAL - CHARLESTON AND OPINICON LAKES
The Ministry is proposing to create temporary fish sanctuaries on Charleston Lake and Opinicon Lake for the 2004/2005 fishing season to support long-term bass nesting and population recruitment research. The comment phase closes June 19th. (Click for more info)
OPP BOATING VIDEO - MIND YOUR WAKE
CHARLESTON LAKE ENVIRONMENTAL ASSOCIATION (CLEA) YOUTH BURSARIES FOR STUDENTS GRADUATING FROM HIGH SHCOOL (JUNE 2023)
On an annual basis, CLEA will provide bursaries for three students graduating from high school. There will be on bursary fro the Athens District School, one for the Gananoque Intermediate & Secondary School and new this year, one for a student who is a family member of a current CLA member in good standing. (Click for more info)
CATARAQUI CONSERVATION ISSUES FLOOD WATCH (May 1st memo) (Click for more info)
CRCA FLOOD MESSAGE (Murray Hall) May 2
We received 65-72 mm throughout the watersheds in a 12 hour period on Sunday around 3 pm until Monday 3 am, this amount of rain in a very short period of time has made the inflows from tributaries close to an all time high. Throughout the watersheds I have never had as much water in some fields where you could actually put a boat in them.
The level Monday morning at Charleston lake 85.85 was (4'-0), level this morning was 85.90 (4'-2"). We made adjustments at Outlet dam on Saturday-Monday and today, there is only minimal drop so we cannot pass any more water through the dam.
With the flooding on-going at Delta and below the MNR have increased their flows to where I cannot pass this much water through the Marble Rock dam, so levels downstream of the Outlet dam are going to be increasing creating even less flow through the Outlet dam. Levels will probably exceed the levels of 3 weeks ago 85.97 (4'-5") on Charleston lake. I will keep you posted.
CHARLESTON LAKE FISH DIARY (Click to fill in fish diary)
We have created a fish diary that Anglers can easily input their fish catches/releases of the day. The information will be used to help MNR understand the age and type of fish in Charleston Lake.
SUMMER JOB APPLICATION FOR CHARLESTON LAKE ASSOCIATION
Attached you will find the application. - Closed
LEEDS AND THOUSAND ISLAND PARTIAL BURN BAN IN EFFECT (See article)
Due to weather conditions, a PARTIAL burn ban has been put in place as of April 10, 2023. As per our Burn By-Law: 5.1.1 - “Partial Burn Ban” which restricts open-air burning but does not include Campfires, Outdoor Appliance fires, or Outdoor Fireplace fires.
CATARAQUI CONSERVATION WATER LEVELS (Click for full document)
Cataraqui Conservation Urges Caution Near Lakes and Waterways over Long Weekend Kingston – The warmer weather and the upcoming holiday long weekend mean lots of area residents and visitors will be out and about enjoying the spring temperatures and the chance to get outdoors with family and friends. With that in mind, Cataraqui Conservation is reminding everyone that based on the recent heavy rainfall throughout the region, and the already existing high-water levels of inland lakes, extra caution needs to be taken near lakes, rivers, streams and other waterbodies.
UNDERUSED HOUSING TAX: IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR NON-CANADIAN PROPERTY OWNERS (Oct 31st FILING DEADLINE updated (Click for full document)
Are you a non-Canadian property owner on Charleston Lake? Are you a Canadian that owns your cottage through a Canadian corporation, partnership, or trust? If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, you must submit a Underused Housing Tax return form (form UHT-2900) to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) by Oct 31 2023.
The new Underused Housing Tax (UHT) came into effect on January 1, 2022, and requires certain non-Canadian property owners (and, in certain circumstances, some Canadian owners if they own property through a Canadian corporation, partnership or trust) to file an annual return to report their ownership and, subject to certain exemptions, pay a 1% tax on the property’s value. Further information and up-to-date guidance on the UHT can be found on the CRA’s website at this link.
2022 SURVEY FOR SHORT TERM RENTALS - LEEDS AND THOUSAND ISLAND TOWNSHIP
Fill out survey for short term rentals for Leeds and Thousand Island Township.
The Township has developed a survey about short term accommodation rentals (e.g., Airbnb, VRBO, HomeToGo). They want to gather input and comments on short-term rental units and their impact on our local community.
The survey is available from July 18 to September 12, 2022. Submissions will be limited to one per household, based on IP address.
The information collected through this process will be used to make future recommendations to Council regarding possible regulatory approaches.
2022 CHARLESTON LAKE ASSOCIATION AGM - Saturday July 9, 2022 at 9:30 am
We will meet in person at Holy Trinity Church on Oak Leaf Road this year.
Our Guest Speaker is David Phillip. David is the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Fisheries Conservation Foundation and Principal Scientist (emeritus) at the Natural History Survey, University of Illinois. His presentation will involve strategies for innovative conservation for the Bass population in the future.
Click for agenda
CLA PUBLISHES BOATING SAFETY MAP (click for copy of map)
The CLA has published a new Official Boating Safety Map of Charleston Lake as part of its ongoing Boater Awareness of Safety System (BASS) program. The map was developed by a committee of CLA Board Members working with professional cartographers and graphic designers. This new map is printed on waterproof and tearproof paper, and shows water depths, shoal markers, and slow speed zones. The back side if filled with useful information on boating safety rules, local wildlife, prominent features around the lake and small businesses.
A free copy of the map was sent to CLA members with the newsletter. This map can also be purchased from local marinas and retail outlets.
CHARLESTON LAKE ASSOCIATION BURSARY
Each year, CLEA provides a bursary to a graduating student at both Gananoque Secondary School and Athens District High School who will be enrolling in an environmental studies program. For 2022, we are pleased to announce that Ella Hudson, who has grown up around the lake, will be awarded the CLEA bursary (Athens).
Great video about loons and impact of lead toxicity in wildlife from Wolf Lake Association
CHARLESTON LAKE WATER LEVELS
Water levels normal for this time of year. The last 5 years has been as follows:
June 23/22: 3' 8" (85.75)
June 21/21: 3' 8 1/2" (85.76)
June 22/20: 3' 7" (85.72)
June 21/19: 4' 0" (85.85)
June 21/18: 3' 7 1/2" (85.74)
June 22/18: 3' 91/2" (85.78)
Presently there is only minimal flow through outlet dam.
CATARAQUI CONSERVATION LAUNCHES NEW LAKE REPORTING DASHBOARD
CHARLESTON LAKE FIREWORKS
The fireworks will be held this year on Saturday July 2nd starting at 9:30.
The Poker Run will be held from 8:00 -12:00.
For more information, go to their facebook page (Charleston Lake FX - Fireworks)
THE SHOAL MARKERS ARE IN!
Thanks to Robbie Gibson and Marty Rukavina for putting in the shoal markers and saving all our props! Also thanks to Chad Blanchard and Cody Johnston for loading and unloading, cleanup and chain replacements. And thanks to George and Faith Bellisle for the use of their pontoon boat to set the markers out.
AVIAN FLU – What You Need to Know
Avian Flu has been detected locally in one wild goose. A reminder not to touch wild birds and report any sick or dead birds that are found. Click for The Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit Update
LYMANTRIA DISPAR DISPAR (LDD) - GYPSY MOTHS
The time is now - If LDD moth was in your area last year, help reduce defoliation of your trees by including egg mass removal in spring yard clean-up. Target the new egg masses that are solid and darker for removal; the older ones are lighter and can be easily squashed. Removal can help to reduce but wont eliminate populations. Click for more in
To see the Ontario Lyme Disease Map for 2022 - Click here
CATARAQUI CONSERVATION FLOOD WATCH - Gananoque River System - March 30, 2022
CHARLESTON LAKE ASSOCIATION IS LOOKING FOR A 2022 SUMMER STUDENT
Main responsibility is to manage the information center and to perform duties of camp counsellor during the youth summer program
For more information, go to the Summer Student Job button on main page of web site.
CHARLESTON LAKE ASSOCIATION 2022 SUMMER CAMPS WILL RUN THIS YEAR
We will be running 3 camps this year - go to the "summer camp section" for more information and to register
If you are interested in being a Camp Counsellors, Volunteers or Lifeguard - please contact firstname.lastname@example.orgA
DOUG HALE MEMORIAL GOLF TOURNAMENT WILL BE HELD AUG 6TH, 2022.
Go to the "golf tournament" section to register
CHARLESTON LAKE ASSOCIATION NEWSLETTER IS NOW AVAILABLE (Feb 2022)
Watch for your copy in the mail or go to the "news and events" section
CHARLESTON LAKE BOATER AWARENESS & SAFETY INITIATIVE (BASS)
Great news! The Charleston Lake Association Boater Awareness and Safety Initiative made it into the October issue of Cottage Life
A cute story about a baby loon on Webster Bay - by one of our residents (Anne Huot)
BLUE-GREEN ALGAE BLOOM
The Provincial Park Superintendent advised us on Oct 13, 2021, that there was a blue-green algae bloom near boathouse cove and Slack Bay. Water was tested and the Public Health Inspector for Leeds and Grenville confirmed blue-green algae blooms with elevated toxins. The bloom has since dissipated. We are sharing the following information on blue-green algae to make you aware and to educate our members.
Blue-green algae blooms are a natural seasonal phenomenon that may appear in our lakes, rivers and ponds. Many of these blooms are relatively harmless; however, some species have the potential to produce toxins which may be harmful to people and animals. The presence of blue-green algae and its toxins can only be confirmed through a laboratory test, so we recommend taking a cautious approach when you suspect a blue-green algae bloom. Toxins that can cause skin irritation, nausea and vomiting, and in higher concentrations, liver problems are released when the cells break down.
The health unit advises people using surface water for recreation and drinking, to become familiar with blue-green algae so they can make informed decisions on when to avoid contact with the water. Algae blooms do degrade with time; however, it is not possible to say whether the toxins have completely left the area. Once the toxin is released from the cell, where it goes is dependent on the local characteristics of water movement in the area. The toxin will eventually be diluted into the body of water as any other soluble compound.
LEVEL 2 LOW WATER CONDITION FOR CATARAQUI REGION (July 12, 2021)
Kingston ON – Cataraqui Conservation with their Low Water Response Team has confirmed a Level 2 Low Water Condition today for the area extending from Napanee to Brockville and north to Newboro due to the continued lower than normal amount of rainfall for the month of June. “The month of June was wetter than May, however the rain deficit continues with the monthly regional precipitation average being only 68% of normal. Without an extended period of normal rain or higher than normal rain it will not be possible to move out of a low water condition. Some relief in the form of cooler, wetter weather is forecast which may improve conditions over the month of July,” explained Cataraqui Conservation Watershed Planning Coordinator, Holly Evans.
“All monitored inland streams are flowing below the average flow rate for this time of year, and many have triggered low water thresholds. If the region does not see sustained amounts of rainfall this month it is likely the Cataraqui Region will stay in a Level II Low Water Condition for July.”
Low water conditions are based upon precipitation and stream flow indicators and a Level 2 low water confirmation is determined by Cataraqui Conservation and the Cataraqui Region Low Water Response Team as part of the Ontario Low Water Response Program.
A Level 2 low water condition is the second of three levels and reflects a potentially serious water supply problem if current precipitation and stream flows trends persist. Level 1 ‘Minor’ suggests a potential water supply problem and Level 3 ‘Severe’ indicates a failure of the water supply to meet demand.
Residents on groundwater systems or that draw from inland lakes or streams are asked to voluntarily conserve water by following water conservation practices:
Reduce non-essential water uses.
Limiting outside watering of plants and lawns. If you must water your lawn, early morning or later evening watering reduces evaporation.
Note that lawns naturally become dormant during times of low water and will recover quickly. Lawns that have turned brown from the drought are not “dead”, the grass has just gone dormant from lack of water. When rainfall returns, the grass will come out of dormancy and perk back up.
Limit washing vehicles, driveways, and sidewalks. Use a pail of soapy water to wash your car and rinse off quickly with a hose.
Repair leaky plumbing or fixtures to help curtail water wastage.
If a water well supply becomes low or dry, well owners are encouraged to review the Ontario Government’s “Managing your well in times of drought publication(https://www.ontario.ca/page/managing-your-water-well-times-water-shortage), and contact a
local licensed water well contractor (https://www.ontario.ca/page/find-licenced-well-contractors) to assessthe well and provide recommended solutions.
Municipalities may invoke water use bylaws and residents should find out what bylaws are in effect in their municipalities regarding water use as well as outdoor fires.
To help Cataraqui Conservation staff track the spread and seriousness of low water impacts on the region ,we are asking for help from the public in collecting this information. If residents have a low water concern, please let us know by filling in this quick online form:https://survey123.arcgis.com/share/7955b90fe7814d0bbef6f9b870ec6da9
Cataraqui Conservation will continue to monitor water levels and will provide updates as conditions change.
CHARLESTON LAKE ASSOCIATION AGM
July 17, 9:00 am you can join the zoom call
or JOIN FROM AUDIO DEVICE OR PHONE (manual dial in)
CHARLESTON LAKE FIREWORKS
Bang, boom, kaboom! After checking all the options; the best, safest decision agreed upon by Athens Township, Charleston Lake FX Committee and COVID restrictions is this: fireworks will be postponed to Saturday July 31st, 2021.
DEBUNKINIG 4 COMMON MYTHS ABOUT TICKS (Cottage Life Article)
CHARLESTON LAKE ASSOCIATION INFO CENTRE
The Information Centre is now open for the 2021 season!
Hours of Operation
May and June: Open weekends from 9 am -3 pm
July and August: Open Thursday - Monday from 9 am - 3 pm (closed Tuesday & Wednesday)
We sell the following environmental products: liquid bleach, laundry liquid, laundry stain remover, fabric softener, dishwashing liquid, toilet bowl cleaner, pet stain and odour remover, window cleaner, multi surface cleaner, liquid hand soap, bath bard, shampoo, moisturizer and babu cloth.
CHARLESTON LAKE INFO CENTRE
The Charleston Lake Association Info Centre's foundation had begun to sag due to uneven settling of the foundation blocks. Paul Johnston stepped in and did the work and provided materials at no charge to the Association. Paul said that he felt that the Association did a lot for Charleston Lake residents and he wanted to contribute his services free of charge. Paul has been a general contractor in the Charleston Lake area for many years. If you need some renovation work done, Paul Johnson General Contracting can be reached at 613-924-9782.
STUDENT PART-TIME SUMMER EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY
The Charleston Lake Association (CLA) is launching a Boater Awareness Safety initiative. One of the main components of the initiative is education and awareness.
Consequently, we are hiring summer students to assist in this endeavor. Students will be working in pairs. The main duties will be to distribute educational material and pamphlets at boat launches. The students will also be required to conduct short surveys on behalf of the CLA.
Click for more info and application form
CLA TO LAUNCH BOATING AWARENESS AND SAFETY INITIATIVE (Summer 2021)
This Summer, the CLA will launch a major new initiative aimed at reducing boat speed and noise, and to promote safe boating etiquette. The initiative, known as BASS (Boater Awareness and Safety System), will have five key elements:
Improved signage at public boat ramps
Traditional media (e.g. CLA member newsletter)
Web-based media (e.g. Boating section on CLA website)
Collateral material (e.g. educational pamphlets and plasticized map)
Youth programs (e.g. boating safety modules via CLA summer camp)
“For many years now, about 80% of the complaints we get as an Association are related to boat noise, speed, and wake,” said CLA President Bill Hallam, “and while it is up to Transport Canada and the OPP to enforce the law, we certainly have the moral authority to promote safe and respectful boating.”
Charleston Lake is not alone in seeing an increase in faster, noisier boats. And more recently, wake boats have become more common, and when operated close to shore can cause significant shoreline erosion, and damage to wildlife such as Loon nests. The BASS initiative aims to increase boater awareness of the different Federal and Provincial laws that govern the use of powered and unpowered watercraft, and build awareness of how operators can enjoy their boats while considering the interest of other users and residents of the lake, including wildlife.
CLA is especially proud that the BASS Initiative was selected from among dozens of applications from across Canada to receive financial support from Transport Canada’s Boating Safety Contribution Program. This contribution will off set a significant portion of the costs of the initiative.
The BASS initiative was developed by a committee of the CLA Board, chaired by John Webster. Other members included Steve Arthur, Bill Hallam, Michael McAdoo, and Rocci Pagnello. Said Webster: “Our committee looked at several different ideas, and then decided that we needed to take a systematic approach that would reach boaters in several ways,” Watch for new signs to go up at the main boat launches by early Summer, along with more and better information on the CLA Website, as well as at local marinas and shops.
GYPSY MOTHS (May 2021)
In the next few days, gypsy moths eggs laid last July will hatch, bringing a wave of defoliation and ecological damage - here's what you can do to help stop them.
Of all the thousands of invasive species globally, the gypsy moth is in the top 100 of the most destructive. It’s native to Europe, where their natural diseases and predators keep numbers controlled. It was brought to North America in 1869, to Medford Massachusetts, by a person who thought the gypsy moth could be bred with silkworms for a new fabric industry. The story goes that the moths escaped out an open window – and those few escapees have now spread across eastern states and provinces. The gypsy moth is not a strong flier – but the larvae are light, and spin silk threads that carry them aloft on the wind.
The invader’s success owes especially to the moth’s eggs. Each female can lay up to 500 eggs. The masses of firm, round eggs are covered in a peach-like fuzz coating that can cause serious skin rashes, and the fuzz helps insulate the eggs to survive cold winters. With the spring hatch, the larvae climb into trees and shrubs, feeding mostly at night, hiding out on the underside of leaves by day. Their favourite food is oak leaves, but just about any plant will do. Colonies of thousands can strip forests of leaves, weakening trees severely, and killing them if the outbreak lasts over years.
For more info, click here
Recently, the Ambrose family placed their 179 acre farm on Ballycanoe Road under a conservation easement with the Thousand Islands Watershed Land Trust (TIWLT). The farm, which includes 20 acres of Leeders Creek wetland and another 100 acres of mature and semi-mature mixed forest cover, reflects the rich biodiversity of TIWLT, in the Frontenac Biosphere Reserve. A key focus of the land trust is the Leeders Creek wetland complex, because it is so very important to protecting water quality, wildlife and in its capacity to offset both floods and drought.
For more about the Thousand Islands Watershed Land Trust programs, and how you at Charleston Lake can participate, see tiwlt.ca.
ONTARIO'S NEW CONSERVATION AUTHORITIES ACT
On December 8, 2020 Ontario Passed Bill 229, the Budget Measures Act including the controversial Schedule 6 which altered the Conservation Authorities Act, despite widespread opposition to the environmental changes by numerous conservation authorities, municipal councils, environmental organizations, as well as Conservation Ontario, Big City Mayors, Association of Municipalities of Ontario, Ontario Farmers Association and thousands of residents raising concerns and asking for Ontario to remove Schedule 6 from the budget bill. Click for more info
BLACK BEAR SIGHTING (May 15, 2020)
Black bear sighting in Charleston Village
and swimming near Hen Island.
For more information on Black Bears
and Cottagers, click here.
The Township of Leeds and the Thousand Islands - click here for more information.
Township of Athens - click here for more information
Government of Ontario - click here for more information
Health Unit - click here for more information
NATURAL EDGE PROGRAM 2020 - On hold due to COVID-19
As many of our CLA members are aware, we have been recognizing some outstanding developed and undeveloped lakefront properties over the last 7-8 years.
For 2020, we are changing our focus slightly and partnering with Watershed Canada to sponsor the Natural Edge Program. The goal of this program is to protect our lake by establishing "natural shorelines".
A team of environmental experts will do a site inspection of a lakefront property, make some recommendations for specific plants based on your land characteristics and height preferences, create a site plan and then place an order for the healthy plants and materials. The CLA will also be looking at subsidizing the costs of the plantings and materials.
If you have a property on the lake that you would like us to consider for this new project, please contact CLA Director Jay Kyle (email@example.com) for a site inspection to consider your request.
THOUSAND ACRE CHALLENGE and TIWLT
Nature in the Charleston Lake area is paramount to the ecological and economic success of the region; the unique plants, animals, and landscapes that characterize this are are loved by the tourists and locals alike.