March 2015
A monthly newsletter to keep you informed about the Detroit River.

Message from the RAP Coordinator
If you're as eager to see spring arrive as we are, this spectacular aerial footage of frozen Peche Island may help you dream of Peche Island Day and warmer weather. Thanks to everyone who came out to make our film screening event another success this year!

As always, we love to hear from you. If you have any upcoming events, questions, or feedback, please email   


Claire Sanders

Remedial Action Plan Coordinator  

Detroit River Canadian Cleanup 

Screening of From Billions to None a Success! 

The Detroit River Canadian Cleanup held its 6th annual film screening on February 26th at Lakeshore Cinemas. The event was a huge success thanks to the 200+ attendees, volunteers and invited experts! This year's film, "From Billions to None: the Passenger Pigeon's Flight to Extinction," chronicled the tragic extinction of the Passenger Pigeon but also shared a message of hope and conservation.

you're asking yourself what the Passenger Pigeon has to do with the Detroit River? As the film notes, the story of the Passenger Pigeon is a portal to current issues of extinction and biodiversity. Similar to the outreach goals of the DRCC, the film stresses the importance of conservation, public awareness and interested citizens. Based on the turnout at this year's film screening, it's safe to say Windsor-Essex has many interested citizens! "The one thing that struck me about the movie and the gathering was the palpable expression of interest from the community," said Mike Nelson, the Essex Region Conservation Authority's Watershed Planner and one of the night's Expert Panel Members."Here we were during a cold weather alert with a packed movie theatre. That so many were interested and keen to learn more about the story of the Passenger Pigeon and the connections to the Detroit River reinforced the fact that the work that we do is important. It was also refreshing and reassuring to see so many different people from so many different walks of life interested in this topic."  

In 1987, the Detroit River was identified as an Area of Concern because of the extremely degraded water quality, the contaminated sediments, and the loss of fish and wildlife habitat, among other things. Since then, Detroit River Canadian Cleanup partnership has made enormous strides and invested millions of dollars to ensure that we return the Detroit River to a healthier ecosystem for all of us, as well as the organisms that use the river. Populations of Lake Sturgeon and Bald Eagle are just two of the species that DRCC partners continue to monitor. It may be too late for the Passenger Pigeon but there are some incredible stories of conservation success right here in our backyard, and many endangered species and habitats that we can still protect.


A huge "thank you" goes out to the DRCC Education and Public Involvement volunteers, Pearl Bradd, Pete Thomas and Tom Henderson, and our Expert Panel Members, Karen Cedar, Mike Nelson and Phil Roberts. Many thanks to the City of Windsor, as well as Environment Canada, the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change, and the Essex Region Conservation Authority for helping to make the event possible. Finally, a big thank you to Kris Ives, DRCC's former Remedial Action Plan Assistant. Kris curated the Passenger Pigeon exhibit that was in the theatre lobby the night of the event and has done a tremendous job bringing awareness to the 100th anniversary of the extinction of the Passenger Pigeon.

sure to keep an eye out for upcoming events that DRCC is hosting or participating in, such as Earth Day on April 26th at Malden Park, as well as next year's film screening!


CGI animation from film recreating John James Audubon's 1813 sighting of a massive Passenger Pigeon flock in Kentucky. Image courtesy of Waubansee Productions.
Marine Traffic Mobile App

Ever wonder where the ships travelling through the Detroit River are coming from or going to? The Marine Traffic app provides users with all of this information and more! You can identify and learn about vessels travelling in your area simply by pointing the camera of your mobile device at the horizon. Users can also access information about vessels travelling worldwide, learning of their near real-time position, their origin and destination, their size and speed, and what freight they contain.

To find out more, or to download the application, visit

Strengthened Great Lakes Protection Act


Letter from the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change  

Ontario is taking action to protect the Great Lakes and has re-introduced a strengthened Great Lakes Protection Act, which recognizes the importance of the Great Lakes to Ontario's environment, economy and health of our citizens.


If passed, the new, strengthened Great Lakes Protection Act will protect and restore our Great Lakes, to help keep them drinkable, fishable, and swimmable.


The strengthened act, if passed, would:

  • Help to fight climate change, reduce harmful algal blooms, and protect wetlands and other coastal areas
  • Monitor and report on the health of the lakes
  • Bring people together to take local action on priority issues
  • Build on Ontario's leadership in protecting the Great Lakes, including our Great Lakes Strategy and partnerships with Canada, Québec, and the U.S. Great Lakes states

The proposed act reflects feedback we've received on previous versions of the bill.


We encourage you to provide your comments on the Ontario Environmental Registry. Comments will be accepted until April 19, 2015.


Today's action builds on the recently signed Canada-Ontario Agreement on Great Lakes Water Quality and Ecosystem Health which is the principal mechanism through which Ontario and Canada coordinate their work to address their respective and shared commitments to protect the Great Lakes. The proposed Great Lakes Protection Act also builds upon Ontario's Great Lakes Guardian Community Fund which was established to help people take action to protect and restore their corner of the Great Lakes.

If you have any questions or would like more information please e-mail Chris Lompart,


I look forward to continuing to work with you to protect our Great Lakes now, and for future generations.




Glen Murray


Extra! Extra! Read all about it!

The Detroit River in the are some relevant, external links to news articles that may pique your interest. Click on the link to read on.
Upcoming Events
Save the date for these great local events! Please ensure you contact the organizer for more information.


March 5, 2015: 7:30pm

Essex Civic Centre, 360 Fairview Ave. W., Essex


The Canada South Land Trust's Annual General Meeting will be held in Room C of the Essex Civic Centre. The AGM will include reports of Land Trust activities over the past year. Our guest speaker will be Tom Preney, a naturalist at Ojibway Nature Centre, who will discuss the first BioBlitz and this year's upcoming BioBlitz. The first BioBlitz was held in 2014. During that BioBlitz Spotted Wintergreen (an endangered species) was discovered along with two new worm species for the Ojibway area. Refreshments will be served. Please RSVP to Betty at 519-944-0825.


March 11, 2015: 7:30pm

Ojibway Nature Centre, 5200 Matchette Road, Windsor


Join Club Members to hear about future plans and updates on last year's activities and finances, reports from our various committees, selection of our 2015-2016 Executive, and to participate in our always fun, and sometimes frustrating, quiz for door prizes. Silent auction and refreshments will follow the meeting.


March 15, 2015: 2:00pm

Ojibway Nature Centre, 5200 Matchette Road, Windsor


Join Club Member, Dave Kraus, for a workshop on tree identification. The event will be held at the Ojibway Nature Centre and outdoors if the weather permits. There is no cost for this workshop. For more information:


March 16-20, 2015: 9:00am-5:00pm

Canada South Science City, 930 Marion Avenue, Windsor


Designed for ages 5-12. Kids have fun discovering science through structured play. Early drop-off and late pickup available. Cost: $25/child/day.


March 17, 2015: 7:00pm-10:00pm

John R. Park Homestead, Harrow


Join us for an old-fashioned sugaring off party! Help collect sap and boil it down by moonlight. Make taffy on the snow, join in the barn dance, linger for star gazing and legends. Pre-registration required and tickets are $15. Tickets available online: For information call 519-738-2029 or contact the homestead at


March 17, 2015: 1:30pm-4:00pm

March 20, 2015: 1:30pm-4:00pm

John R. Park Homestead, Harrow


Arrive early, dress warmly and wear boots. Families tour the site with a costumed guide and discover the sweet process of maple syrup and sugar making in the pioneer method. Help carry the sap using pails and a wooden yoke. Try your hand at the brace and bit drill. See the trees tapped and the sap evaporating. Learn the history of this sweet springtime treat as you help to make and taste maple sugar. Starts at 1:30pm sharp. Admission is $6 for adults and $4 for children (3-16), with a family maximum of $20 total. For more information, contact Kris at


March 18, 2015: 7:30pm

Canada South Science City, 930 Marion Avenue, Windsor


A free public forum on science research and its importance in our lives, presented by well-known research scientists. Light refreshments.


March 18, 2015: 6:00pm-7:30pm

Westfield Activities Centre, 2700 Westfield Road, Trenton, MI


The Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge is hosting a volunteer outreach, during which staff will be discussing involvement opportunities and provide further information about the benefits of the Refuge. For more information about the outreach or the DRI Wildlife Refuge, call 734-365-0219.


March 28, 2015: 6:00pm doors open

Wyandotte Boat Club, 1 Pine Street, Wyandotte, MI


Help the Friends of the Detroit River keep the Detroit Riverkeeper boat out on the water by attending our annual Detroit Riverkeeper fundraising dinner. Come enjoy a catered dinner and learn about our habitat restoration projects on Stony and Celeron Islands in the lower Detroit River. There will also be door prizes, a raffle and a silent auction. The Wyandotte Boat Club is located at 1 Pine Street, just off Biddle (West Jefferson) Ave., south of Eureka. For more information, call 734-288-3889. For an advance ticket form, visit

Carolinian Canada Coalition's Go Wild - Grow Wild 2015 

April 18, 2015: 10am-6pm 

Agriplex Arena, Western Fair District, London, ON   


Want to know the best ways to enjoy Carolinian Canada? Come pick up a list of hiking trails, chat with expert paddleboarders about their favourite spots, buy native plants from trusted vendors, learn some tips to make your gardening easier, sample some local wine, and check out a workshop or exhibit where the whole family can learn something to inspire your next adventure!


Anyone who enjoys the outdoors and appreciates what this Ecoregion has to offer will appreciate this event! Learn more here:  

Job Postings
These postings are for jobs at various locations with varying deadlines. Please click on the job title to view job details. Contact the listed agency in the job ad for more information. Note: the links will expire after the deadline has passed.