The focus of this year's FOCA Fall Seminar event for lake associations was Strong Associations for Future Generations. The presentations provided plenty of ideas for how lake associations could engage volunteers, particularly a new generation of younger volunteers. Keynote speakers were Alex Mifflin and Tyler Mifflin from the television series, “The Water Brothers.” The day concluded with the launch of the 2017 video “Lake Associations”, which ends with a clip of OLA Past President, Karen Hunt. Christine Kilburn has provided a summary of the day.
The annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count (CBC) took place locally on December 16th. Birders volunteer to count and record their observations. Section 1 of the Rideau Ferry Christmas Bird Count area (a 24 km diameter circle centred in Rideau Ferry) includes the north and north eastern parts of Otty. The south and western shores of Otty are covered in Area 2. Bird Studies Canada and its partner, the National Audubon Society in the United States, rely on data from the Christmas Bird Count database to monitor bird populations.
October 2017 - Our fourth annual "State of the Lake Report" was produced by the OLA to summarize the condition of our lake and the environmental activities that have been completed on Otty this summer. Notes on water quality, water levels, algae, wildlife, and invasive species are included. (8 page PDF.) See the Environment page for past reports.
Keep the environment in mind when closing up your cottage for the season. Here are some tips from the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority.
Our October newsletter is ready to go. Stories on the snake and loon surveys, why you shouldn't feed deer, septic systems, pontoon boats, the Lake Networking Group and more.
As part of our (OLA) ongoing education sessions regarding our lake and nature around our lake, a black bear awareness session was held September 17th at the Perth Library. Trevor Horvatin, Wildlife Technician, MNRF, Kemptville District Office gave an informative presentation about co-exisitng with black bears. Cathy Kari, who organized the session, prepared a summary of the key takeaways for those who could not attend. Watch for the October Captain Otty's Log from more on bears from Trevor.
We’re looking for kids’ contributions to Captain Otty’s Log. If you are under 12, tell us a story about your time on the lake this summer, like an interesting wildlife encounter, something you did, or an interesting summer tradition of your family. Just send us your poem or story, no more than 200 words, by September 15. Photos or drawings to accompany your tale are welcome, too. Don’t forget to include your name and age. We’ll print a selection of them in upcoming newsletters.
Bears Bears are frequently seen in the Otty Lake watershed, and can peacefully coexist with residents. Educate yourself on their behaviour in case you encounter one. Bears are attracted to food of any kind, so be careful how you deal with garbage, fruit trees, barbeques and bird feeders. Generally, bears want to avoid humans. Most encounters are not aggressive and attacks are rare. If you have questions or feel a bear has become a nuisance on your property, contact the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry Bear Wise hotline at 1-866-514-2327.
Some of the original Otty Lake cottages are mentioned in this newspaper piece by Kay Rogers. It comes from her book 'At Home in Tay Valley,' that celebrates the people, places and events in the history of Tay Valley Township and Lanark County.
Thirty Otty Lake families were recognized through the Lanark Legacy Cottage program for having been in their family for at least 50 years. Most of the families were on hand at our July 9th AGM to receive their personalized 8 x 10" plaques. Twenty families in Tay Valley Township and 10 families in Drummond North Elmsley were recognized. Since the AGM an additional 13 cottages were recognized by the program, adminstered by Tay Valley on behalf of the participating municipalities. See the updated list. This is a commemorative designation only, there are no legal restrictions associated with it.
Over 100 of the calendars have already sold! The 18 month "Forests: Flora and Fauna" calendar (starts Jan. 2018) features photos from your Otty Lake neighbours and fascinating forest factoids. If you missed getting yours at the AGM , order via email to Gail Read. Price is 1 for $10, 2 for $15, additional copies $7.
Tay Valley Township is planning for curbside pickup of waste and recycling. Suggested implementation dates currently range from January 1, 2018 to 4th quarter 2018. Pressure and concern from residents and lake associations resulted in a public information session on June 24, 2017. Complete an online survey by July 20 to provide input. Tay Valley information and survey link.
May 21, 2017. The Canadian Lakes Loon Survey (through Bird Studies Canada) is about to get underway on Otty Lake! Data will be collected and mapped in order to estimate the number of loon pairs and offspring present on Otty this year. Volunteers are needed—simply record the locations of any loons observed on trips around the lake (on your watercraft of choice!) and send in the observations! To volunteer or to ask any questions you might have, please contact our loon survey coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
May 21, 2017. Area Counsellors are aiming to visit every resident in their area to deliver a Spring/Summer Information Package, encourage people to begin or renew their membership in the OLA, answer or relay any questions they may have about the lake or lake activities, and say hello! To see an area map, click here. We hope you will find the materials useful.
Here are just a few of the Otty Lake residents who took home maple seedlings to plant on their properties to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary. Thanks to Reid and Christine Kilburn for organizing the repotting of the 150 seedlings, looking after them, taking the orders and being the pickup location June 10.
Protect your property by reviewing these security tips for seasonal and permanent residents:
The Pike Lake Community Association (PLCA) compiled this list of security tips following a meeting of the Lake Networking Group and the OPP earlier this fall. Thanks to the PLCA for sharing!
FOCA suggests marking your personal items, recording serial numbers, and making a list of what you have left at the cottage in their Cottage Closing Tips.
This OPP Security Guard Tip sheet is relevant to seasonal and permanent residents alike.
If you have one of these boxes, be sure to clean it out and put in a fresh supply of wood shavings (not sawdust) this fall or winter. Cavity-nesting ducks do not carry nesting materials and won’t choose an empty box. Boxes are often not used the first year, but a duck may check it out for use the next year, so make sure it passes inspection! (Photo at left is the interior of the nesting box at the Maple Glen recreation area, taken by Jennifer Lamoureux.)
A pair of smallmouth bass spawning on one of the installed spawning beds from the Otty Lake fish and wildlife enhancement project. For additional photos, see our photo gallery.
Find out more about the Fish and Wildlife Enhancement project on the RVCA's Otty Lake webpage.
See this poster and pamphlet from the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit and be prepared. Lyme disease and the ticks responsible for its spread are established throughout Leeds, Grenville and Lanark Counties. More tick references on our Environment Page.
You’ll want to learn to recognize this plant, wild parsnip, which is spreading rapidly in Eastern Ontario. People coming in contact with the plant’s sap have developed severe skin irritations. This plant has a yellow umbrella-like top and saw tooth leaves. Wild parsnip can be controlled by pulling or digging, or by mowing if done at the right stage of its development. Wear protective clothing and be extremely cautious when handling it, and be wary of picking wild flowers.
Tay Valley residents can access the HHWD in Middleville, 4686 Wolf Grove Road, from the Victoria Day Weekend until the Thanksgiving Day Weekend. The site is available to all residents of Lanark Highlands and Tay Valley Township. The depot is open during all regular Middleville waste site hours: Monday 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., Wednesday 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Drummond North Elmsley residents are entitled to use the HHWD on Patterson Cres. in Carleton Place. It is open Saturday mornings 8 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. from May 20, 2017 until September 2, 2017, and is available to certain municipalities within Lanark County.