Friends of Minesing Wetlands

Inspiring Respect and Sustainability for a World Class Wetland, for People, Forever

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Reflecting on 2015

The holidays are upon us and soon the new year. 2015 was a great year for the Friends of  Minesing Wetlands. We continued to promote the ecological values of the Minesing Wetlands by leading 2 snowshoe trips, a cross-country ski tour and 2 paddles into the Minesing Wetlands. We also presented our second evening of information on the Minesing Wetlands and, of course, hosted our annual funspeil. FOMW memberships is strong and the board of directors are active. We welcomed four new directors to the board in 2015.

Look for us early in 2016 as we will be leading lead 3 winter trips into the Minesing Wetlands.

Thank you for your continued support and Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!



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Evening of Information

We are happy to announce the FOMW Evening of Information will be on Nov 25, 2015 from 6:30-9:30 pm at the Tiffin Center for Conservation, Jose Building.

There is no cost for this event all though we do accept donations. To register please follow this Eventbrite link:   Eventbrite - Evening of Information

6:30     Doors Open

7 pm    Welcome: Naomi Saunders, Chair, Friends of Minesing Wetlands

7:10     History of First Nations in the Minesing Wetlands: Jeff Monague, Manager of Springwater Provincial Park from the Beausoleil First Nations

7:40     Lost in the Wetlands: Search and rescue in Minesing. Darren Buck, Assistant Team Coordinator for the Georgian Bay Volunteer Search and Rescue

8:10     Break

8:25     Ontario Master Naturalist Program (OMNP): Bob Bowles, award-winning environmental consultant, educator and naturalist: speaking about this new community program brought to Canada

9 pm    Questions (Speaker Panel)

We look forward to sharing the wonders of the Minesing Wetland!

Event is free however donations will be accepted.

All members of the Friends of Minesing Wetlands who attend will be entered into a free draw for David Walsh’s beautiful photo canvas of the Snowy Owl.


FOMW Spring Canoe Trips 2015

FOMW Spring Canoe Trips 2015

The Friends of Minesing Wetlands are excited to announce two dates when we will be leading trips into the Minesing Wetlands via canoe or kayak! April 18th and May 9th.

To join us on the 18th of April, please contact:
Kristyn Ferguson at 519-826-0068 x.222/519-400-9140

If you would like to join us on May the 9th, please contact:
Sean Rootham at

This will reserve a spot for yourself and anyone accompanying you.
We only take 20 boats per trip.

We will meet at 8:30 a.m. (at the latest) at the Willow Creek Canoe Coral on George Johnson Road (County Road 28) in Springwater Township. This should give us enough time to off-load our canoes and shuttle our cars to the end destination, which is approximately 10 minutes away. Hopefully this will be done quickly so that we can get on the water for 9 a.m. The trip will take approximately 5 hours.

Dress appropriately for the weather conditions of the day, which should include high cut boots or rubber boots for possible portages. Also, bring extra clothing in case you get wet. Bring your own warm drinks, snacks for along the way, and a packed lunch for our break around noon.

At least a basic paddling knowhow is required for this trip. All boats must be equipped with the required safety equipment (lifejackets, bailer, whistle, light and throw rope). We do not rent equipment, however if you need a boat there are at least three local providers you can contact.

The cost for joining us is $40 for non-members and $20 for members.
This includes safe passage with certified leaders and ecological interpretation of the Minesing Wetlands.

fomw_paddle_pic  FOMW


The Ethics Around Snowy Owls

We are in the midst of a second straight year of a snowy owl irruption (some have referred to this as an “echo”) where snowy owls move south in large numbers from their tundra habitat. In this area, snowy owls are typically seen on hydro/telephone poles, fence posts and trees in open agricultural landscapes though some have even been observed in urban Barrie! Snowy owls are typically not migratory – they are moving south into the area due to food scarcity. They have expended significant energy to get here and are basically trying to find enough food to survive the winter months and fuel up for their return trip back to their tundra habitats in northern Canada.

Snowy owls are magnificent birds to view and are often quite visible in their open habitats. They are thrilling to observe and photograph. Unfortunately, reports have surfaced of unethical behaviour with issues ranging from purposefully flushing the birds and even baiting the owls using live mice to get the “perfect photo”. Lack of respect for private property is also a significant concern. The snowy owls are using these “working landscapes” created by our agricultural community. Trespassing – aside from being an illegal act – disrespects the very landowners that are providing habitat for the owls.

The Ontario Federation of Ornithologists has a Code of Ethics that provides some common sense approaches to this issue.

Bottom line…the snowy owls need space to hunt, rest, and keep from becoming overly fatigued in order to survive. Please enjoy these unexpected winter visitors responsibly – let’s give them the best chance possible to return again one day!

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A Public Evening of Science and Stewardship on the Minesing Wetlands

A public evening on science & stewardship in the Minesing Wetlands

For copies of this evenings presentations please visit the Educational and Cultural Functions page

Date: Thursday, November 13, 2014 6:30 PM – 9:30 PM

Location: Tiffin Conservation Centre in Utopia

The Friends of Minesing Wetlands presents this ​exciting evening on the science and stewardship of the internationally significant Minesing Wetlands.

Local experts will discuss the ecology, hydrogeology and forest health of the Minesing. Special presentations include a discussion on the rare Hine’s Emerald Dragonfly and land securement and stewardship activities within this special part of our watershed.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and presentations begin at 7:00 p.m. A suggested donation of $10 may be made at the door.

 With limited seating available preregistration is encouraged. Click below to register via Eventbrite.



Ontario Trumpeter Swan Restoration

The Friends of Minesing Wetlands support the efforts of the Ontario Trumpeter Swan Restoration program and their efforts to improve the population of Trumpeter Swans to Ontario.  The Minesing Wetlands is a part of this species migrating and breeding range.  If you are interested in more information about this program please see the brochure below with information about reporting sightings of the Trumpeter Swan in the Minesing Wetlands.

The brochure also has tips for protecting and aiding in the recovery of Trumpeter Swans in Ontario.

Currently the Trumpeter Swan population in Ontario is estimated at 800-1000 individuals and growing, which is good news for the restoration of this species to its former migration and breeding range.

To report sightings please visit their facebook page: Ontario Trumpeter Swans

To view their brochure in PDF form click: OTSR Brochure