We’re working hard to protect our watershed.

Series: No. 1 – Rainy River Headwaters

This is a watershed shared almost equally between Canada and the U.S., the majority of it being undeveloped and utilized for timber production, hunting, fishing, hiking and other recreational opportunities. The majority of land within the Ontario portion is within Quetico Provincial Park where no development is permitted (logging, mining, hydroelectric development). One community, Lac…

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Series: No. 2 – Big Turtle River-Rainy Lake

This watershed is entirely within Canada and, for water quality and fisheries management, it is within Ontario’s Fisheries Management Zone 5.  The vast majority of the watershed is undeveloped with logging and related road construction the major land use activities.  There are no hydroelectric facilities or currently operating mines and no managed water systems.  As…

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Series: No. 3 – Vermilion Watershed

The Vermilion Watershed is entirely within the U.S. – it is 662,427 acres in size, contains 565 lakes and 84,333 acres of wetlands and includes a portion of the Boundary Water Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW). The BWCAW is roadless, undeveloped country that is interconnected with lakes, rivers and portages.  Lake Vermilion itself is a unique…

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Series: No. 4 – Little Fork River Watershed

This is a watershed that is entirely within the U.S. Vast tracts of forests and wetlands, along with limited development pressure have helped sustain the Little Fork River Watershed as a high quality aquatic resource. However, nonpoint source pollution contributes to excess levels of turbidity (i.e., sedimentation) throughout. Increased runoff from the land and impacts…

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Series: No. 5 – Big Fork Watershed

The Big Fork River Watershed is in the U.S. portion of the basin only and is 2,073 square miles in size.  Development pressure is moderate in most areas, with occasional farms being parceled out for development, recreation or country homes.  Intensive watershed monitoring began in the Big Fork River watershed in 2010 – the monitoring…

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Series: No. 6 – Lower Rainy Watershed

The Lower Rainy Watershed straddles the United States-Canadian border and is dominated by the flat, slow-moving and long (130 km/81 miles) Rainy River. Principal industries in the area include forest product harvesting, forest product manufacturing, farming and tourism.  Agriculture dominates the landscape on the Canadian side of the watershed with only minor logging and one…

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Series: No. 7 – Rapid River Watershed

The Rapid River Watershed, 573,060 acres in size, is entirely in the U.S., with over 79% of the land owned or managed by state entities. There are 134 farms within its boundaries, most less than 1,000 acres in size.  As with many areas of northern Minnesota, principal industries include forest product harvesting, forest product manufacturing,…

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Series: No. 8 – Rainy Lake Watershed

This watershed is immense, the majority of it being within Canada.  In the U.S., the eastern two-thirds of massive Rainy Lake is part of the border lakes in Voyageurs National Park (VNP), as are adjacent Namakan and Sand Point Lakes. VNP also includes Kabetogama Lake. These four very large, interconnected lakes provide spectacular, undeveloped scenery,…

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Series: No. 9 – Lake of the Woods Watershed

The Lake of the Woods Watershed is a massive, binational watershed with the majority in Ontario, a small portion in Manitoba and the remainder in Minnesota.   Resource concerns in the U.S. portion include excessive wetness, wetland and woodland management, the short growing season, pasture management and surface water quality, with specific concerns for nutrient enrichment…

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Series: No. 10 – Shoal Lake

The Shoal Lake watershed covers approximately 960 km2 on the Manitoba-Ontario border, with the area shared almost equally between Manitoba and Ontario. Major waterbodies in the watershed include Shoal Lake, Falcon Lake and High Lake. The Shoal Lake watershed is home to the First Nation communities of Iskatewizaagegan No.39 Independent First Nation and Shoal Lake…

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