Through the development of an educated and empowered group of landowners the Hamilton-Halton Watershed Stewardship Program (HHWSP) strives to protect, enhance and restore environmentally significant natural areas, watercourses and drinking water sources in the Hamilton and Halton watersheds. HHWSP is guided by Conservation Halton’s Watershed Plans and Hamilton Conservation Authority’s Stewardship Action Plans, all created in partnership with community stakeholders.
The Hamilton Harbour Remedial Action Plan (HHRAP) recommends that citizens in urban and rural areas of the Hamilton Harbour and its watershed take responsibility for restoring and maintaining the quality of the environment in which they live. This is the foundation upon which the Bay Area Restoration Council (BARC) initiated the Hamilton Harbour Watershed Stewardship Project (HHWSP) together with the Hamilton Conservation Authority and Conservation Halton in 1994. In 1999 the HHWSP expanded its program delivery to cover the entire jurisdiction of Hamilton Conservation Authority and Conservation Halton.
- Educate rural and urban landowners about the importance of protecting natural areas and watercourses.
- Inspire landowners to become good stewards of natural areas and watercourses.
- Support landowners as they take responsibility for the protection and rehabilitation of natural areas and watercourses on their property.
The HHWSP works with landowners to help them with the following types of projects:
- Planting: trees for forests, plants along streams, windbreaks and hedgerows, meadows, prairies, native wildflower gardens, wetland habitats, outdoor classrooms, etc.
- Wildlife Habitat Enhancements: turtle nesting sites, improved fish habitat, management of invasive species, etc.
- Water Quality Improvements: fencing livestock out of streams, improving manure storage systems, controlling erosion, decommissioning abandoned water wells, etc.
- Education Projects: landowner workshops, interpretive signage, demonstration sites, etc.
- Contacted 5,000 urban and rural landowners; providing them with information on their individual role to maintain the health of the watershed.
- Made verbal Stewardship Agreements with over 300 landowners to consider the effects of their land management practices on the health of the watershed.
- These Stewardship Agreements cover over 5,000 hectares of land. This includes over 320 kilometres of buffered watercourses and over 3,000 hectares of natural area in the watersheds of Hamilton Conservation Authority and Conservation Halton.
Please contact our staff to arrange for a FREE site visit and find out how you can protect and/or enhance the natural features on your land.