The Love Your Lake program is a shoreline assessment program that is funded by the Canadian Wildlife Federation and Watersheds Canada. The first part of the program includes a short questionnaire that is distributed to property owners. The questionnaire includes questions about lake usage, concerns about the lake, and what actions should be taken to protect the lake. The surveys are used to give the South Saskatchewan River Watershed Stewards a better understanding of the resident’s views about the health of the lake.
The second part of the program is to have a trained staff assess each individual shoreline property by boat. The shoreline assessor will be looking for shoreline features such as erosion, naturalization, and presence of wildlife habitat. Once all of the shoreline properties have been assessed, the data will be entered into an online database for creation of the shoreline property reports. The shoreline property reports are made up for each shoreline property owner which outline the state of their shoreline and voluntary stewardship actions that they can take in to improve the health of their shoreline and the lake.
Once the shoreline assessments have been completed on a lake area, trained staff may conduct a nutrient assessment as well as a septic assessment. These two assessments will help determine the amount of nutrients in the lake. The last step in the program is shoreline naturalization which is funded by Watersheds Canada. In this part of the program a trained staff will assist shoreline property owners in naturalizing their shoreline to increase lake health and natural habitat for shoreline protection.
The objective of this program is to assist lake communities in identifying shoreline issues and help improve shoreline integrity. These programs benefit the lake community by improving shoreline, fish habitat, recreational activities and lake health. This program gives shoreline property owners the tools they need for voluntary environmental stewardship activities. By enhancing the shoreline and improving lake health, this creates a healthier environment for people and wildlife to use.