New Burgee with Tekton
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PaBIA's Vision: To Preserve This Unique Natural Habitat for Generations to Come
Volume 13 No. 25
Walking on Water 2021
Boy Walking on Water by Nina Duras
What a glorious several weeks of weather we have had here in PaB! The winds and waters are warm, the sky is blue and finally, the humidity has lessened! But it does mean we need to be careful of fire as the fire rating was raised to a moderate on the icon to see the restrictions.

Also please remember to put your cottage patrol tags on your cottage and notify Nancy Rogers with any concerns in that regard. Not able to come this summer.? Please notify Nancy by Friday if you would like a late summer cottage patrol. More on these items below in the body of the eBlast.
Welcome Home Sign
Last Friday, the Ojibway Club and PaBIA hosted a 'Welcome Home' party on the Ojibway dock for those Amercians who were able to return to their beloved cottages after a 16 month hiatus. The dock was full of good friends, so happy to be back together! Cannot wait for next year when everyone is 'home'.

Sunday was a special day in PaB as the OHPS hosted a Talking Circle, called The Garden of Pines, run by Vince Pawis, Marilyn Capreol and Donna Longlade from Shawanaga First Nations and assisted by a father/son drummer team from the Henley FN: Rod Nettagog and Bradlee Henry. For the 60 people who attended, the cottagers heard first from our hosts about some of their beliefs and practices as well as an explanation for how the Talking Circle worked; and then each person was given the floor to speak whatever was on his/her heart, holding the 'talking stick' as each spoke. It was indeed very special and many came away with a greater understanding of our SFN neighbours and their traditions - from which we can learn so much.

Below is a picture of the the FN drummers as we all stood out of respect for the music.
Talking Circle w drummers
In this eBlast:

  • PaBIA IN-PERSON Boater Training TODAY @ 9 a.m.
  • PaBIA Sailing August 28
  • GBB Climate Speedier Webinar August 26

  • Notice of PaBIA AGM: Tuesday, September 21 @ 7 p.m. EDT
  • New Director Position for Indigenous Affairs & Liasion to Shawanaga First Nation
  • LIterally on the Bay by Janet Irving, Education Committee
  • Docks Clean Up - Need Everyone's Help - by Erica Allen
  • PaBIA American & International Members NOT in Canada - Special August Cottage Patrol
xxxxxxDeadline to sign up this Friday, August 27th
  • Porcupines in the Pointe au Baril Islands by Trudy Irvine, Education Committee
  • PaBIA Cottage Patrol Tags for FALL, WINTER, SPRING Patrols
  • This Week: Water Levels: Diversions by Helen Bryce, Education Committee
  • Lake Michigan-Huron Water Levels - August 23, 2021
  • Yearbook Update 2021 from August 17
PaBIA Icon
Notice of AGM: Tuesday, September 21 @ 7 pm EDT
via Zoom

Please be advised that a member may ask that an item be added to the Annual Meeting. The Bylaws provide that the member must provide written notice to the President no less than 14 days prior to the Annual Meeting. Further, the member must provide sufficient background and detail to allow that Board to consider same.

We will outline the final agenda next week.
Proposed PaBIA Director - Mark Gwozdecky
Mark Gwozlecky
Our First Nations forbearers helped to shape and build what we now know and love as Pointe au Baril. Many years ago, our Shawanaga First Nation neighbours were an integral part of our community. Sadly, over time, that changed. We recognize there is a tremendous opportunity for reconciliation, cross-cultural learning and much to be done to rebuild those relationships. PaBIA is pleased to announce a new role within its board of Directors, Indigenous Affairs & Liasion with Shawanaga First Nations. 

With his many years serving Canada’s Diplomatic Corp, Mark Gwozdecky is the ideal candidate. 

Born and raised in Thunder Bay, Mark spent more than 50 years in his family cottage near Lake Superior before purchasing a cottage in Laura Bay 5 years ago. 

In 2019 he retired from a 37 year career as a Canadian diplomat during which time he served in Korea, the Philippines, Syria, Lebanon, Vienna, and as Canada’s Ambassador to Jordan and Iraq. 

In the past year he has served as one of PaBIA’s representatives on the Georgian Bay Association. His familiarity with the federal government was called upon in the GBA’s advocacy strategy to allow our international cottagers to regain access to their cottages after 16 months of absence. During this past year, he was also asked to take on responsibilities as PaBIA’s liaison with the Shawanaga First Nation (SFN). In this regard, he developed a strategy to increase PaBIA’s awareness of indigenous issues as well as engagement and cooperation with SFN, including on phragmites eradication and water quality testing. 

He lives in Ottawa with his wife Wendy and has 5 grown children.  
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Literally on the Bay

Book recommendations by Charlotte Stein, owner of Parry Sound Books

Edited by Janet Irving, Education Committee.

There is nothing – absolutely nothing - like reading a book on a summer’s day on Georgian Bay! This summer we suggest some books that are literally set on the Bay – or feel so much so that we just had to include them.
Standing in a River
John Gierach is my favourite fishing guy. His book Standing in a River Waving a Stick was the first, and best, book I read after taking up fly fishing – a low-impact activity for my old age as long as I don’t slip on a wet rock. His writing is passionate, compassionate and absolutely lovely. When it is too dark to fish you can enjoy reading about John Gierach’s many adventures and tall tales.
Wolf Island
Wolf Island by Celia Godkin is a picture book based on an actual event, a winter when a family of wolves leaves their island home. Their absence causes an imbalance in nature as the deer population increase to the point that there is not enough vegetation to feed them all. Every species on the island eventually faces starvation until the accidental return of the wolves.
abandoned dock
Abandoned Dock
Clean Up - Need Everyone's Help!

PaBIA needs your help! We are hoping to engage our community to help identify and assist in the removal of unsightly and potentially very dangerous abandoned docks on our shorelines. The Township of the Archipelago has agreed to waive disposal fees and help disassemble the docks once delivered to the station.

If you know of any derelict docks please send the specific location and, if possible, a photo to Tom Lundy.

Please keep in mind some docks may belong to American cottagers who have been unable to come to their properties and we must not include these! To avoid this possibility, if you know of any derelict docks, please take a picture and send it to your American neighbours for possible identification before reporting it to Tom Lundy!

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED - Sign Up by calling or emailing Marine Patrol - (647) 545-9283
PaBIA Icon
Deadline August 27th to sign up
Bruce Tiffin, PaBIA’s Cottage Patrolman, will provide a cottage patrol visit for PaBIA’s US and International members who are unable to be in Pointe au Baril again this year.

This special service is BY REQUEST ONLY.   To have your property on the Summer Patrol, contact Nancy Rogers. Deadline for patrol requests is Friday, August 27th.
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What Impacts Our Water Levels,
What Does The Future Bring, and
What Can We Do About It?

This week: Diversions
Prior Weeks: Inflow and Outflow; Precipitation & Evaporation

by Helen Bryce, Director of Education

The second most influential impacts on Georgian Bay water levels are inflows, outflows, and human-made diversions. Editor's Note: Due to the length, the article about Diversions will be next week. If you would like to read it all at once, please click here.

Water Flow

Because of the enormity of the Great Lakes system, decisions have been made for many reasons over the years to add to or to take away water from the system. 
  • The major diversions in the Great Lakes basin that affect water levels are diversions into Lake Superior at Long Lac and Ogoki, the Chicago diversion out of Lake Michigan, a diversion between lakes Erie and Ontario through the Welland Canal and the control structure in the St. Mary’s River in Sault Ste. Marie.
  • These diversions have a much smaller impact on water levels than evaporation or precipitation.
  • The Long Lac and Ogoki diversions, located in northern Ontario, divert water from a portion of the Hudson Bay watershed into the Lake Superior basin. The Long Lac diversion began in 1939 and the Ogoki diversion began in 1943 for hydro-electric power generation. Oftentimes, these two diversions are considered as one because they are both diverting flows from the same watershed. They are operated by Ontario Power Generation.
  • The Chicago diversion, located in Chicago, Illinois, diverts water from the Lake Michigan watershed into the Upper Mississippi River basin. The Chicago diversion began in the early 1800s and increased in 1900 after the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal was completed to prevent sewage from mixing into the drinking water supply and to facilitate commercial goods transport from the Mississippi river. The first US Supreme Court decree in limiting the Chicago diversion was effective in 1925, and the latest decree of 1967, modified in 1980, limits the annual diversion to 91 cubic meters per second (3,200 cubic feet per second). It is operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers. 
  • The Welland Canal is a navigation route that bypasses Niagara Falls and diverts water from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. The first canal was built in 1829 and was steadily improved over the years, including the addition of diversions for hydropower. The present configuration was set as a result of the 1950 Niagara Treaty. It is operated by the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp.  
  • Control structures in the St. Mary’s River were built in the late 1800s. These were created to produce hydroelectric energy to power heavy industry in the Sault Ste. Marie area on both sides of the border. These structures divert water from the river into three side canals feeding one Canadian and two US power plants. Additionally, these structures can be opened or closed to compensate for increases or decreases in water levels and usages for power. In this same area, there are also two major shipping locks on the US side of the river and one smaller lock on the Canadian side. These control structures are the only water levels management structure in the upper Great Lakes.
The St. Clair River
  • A point of contention for many Georgian Bay property owners is the historical dredging of the St. Clair River for shipping on the St Lawrence Seaway. This began in the mid-1800s and has occurred many times since then. There was also significant sand and gravel mining in the early part of the 20th century.
  • Federal officials have long acknowledged that dredging and riverbed mining in St. Clair dropped the long-term average of Great Lakes Huron and Michigan by about 16 inches. A bi-national Great Lakes water-level study concluded in 2013 that unexpected erosion since the last major St. Clair dredging project in the early 1960s has dropped the lakes' long-term average by an additional 3 to 5 inches.
  • Today, these lakes are nearly 2 feet lower than before human modifications to the riverbed of the St. Clair River. This record low raised concerns about the long-term health of the lakes. 
  • Regarding the question of future dredging of the St. Clair River, the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) carries out annual maintenance in the St. Clair River that includes dredging where needed. This however has little impact on flow rates as over-dredging would negatively impact the ability to retain water during the next low water cycle.
  • Currently, the changes in the St Clair River bed are being continuously monitored by the USACE and flow rates are measured at the mouth of the River using Doppler velocity sonar tools.
Online resources used for this article:
Next week: A word about Regulation and the International Joint Commission. Does anyone control this massive system??
Before closing at the end of the season, please attach your patrol tags to your main cottage and any other buildings for which you’re purchased extra tags for the fall ’21, winter and spring ’22 patrols. 
Patrolman Tag
EdCom Logo w books
Porcupines in the
Pointe au Baril Islands

by Trudy Irvine, Education Committee

Porcupine use
Cottagers on a Champlain Island property were surprised recently by the sight of a porcupine ambling along their shoreline. Porcupine sightings have been a rarity in PaB in recent years, and there has been speculation that their formerly strong populations had been almost exterminated by their most formidable predators - the fisher. Porcupines have also been considered pests and likely dispatched by cottagers who have had to pluck quills from dogs’ muzzles and found damage from the rodents chewing on their trees and cottage structures. (picture by Madeleine Arsenault)

Here are some interesting facts about porcupines:

  • The porcupine’s head, neck, and rump are protected by hollow quills with barbs at the ends. When under attack, the porcupine contracts muscles under its skin to make the quills stand up, presents its posterior to its adversary, and lashes out with its spiny tail. Quills are easily detached and left embedded in the attacker. 
  • Quills may loosen and fall off, but the notion that quills can be thrown by the animal is mistaken. Porcupines have a soft, wooly undercoat under the quills, which are themselves covered by long guard hairs and not all that apparent until the porcupine raises them in defense. There are no quills on the muzzle, legs, or underparts of the body.
  • The porcupine’s hollow quills help them to be excellent swimmers and insulate them from cold in the winter. (Porcupines do not hibernate.)
  • Porcupines are proficient climbers and will scale trees to eat, escape predators, and rest.
  • Porcupines are mostly nocturnal.
  • Porcupines are herbivores, and their summer diet consists of a variety of shrub and tree leaves, roots, and berries. In winter, they feed on the cambium layer and inner bark of trees, and evergreen needles.
  • Porcupines love salt, which can be found as an additive in plywood and might explain why they have a taste for your outbuildings. Porcupines will also eat sweaty/salty boots, canoe paddles, and axe handles belonging to campers. Unfortunately, their fondness for salt often leads them to roadways where it has been applied to melt ice in the winter.
  • Porcupines were an important food source for indigenous populations, as their meat is rich and fatty. 
  • Porcupine quills are valuable to indigenous people that practice the ancient tradition of quillwork. Quills are sorted, dyed, and used to embellish birchbark boxes, clothes, moccasins, earrings and more. Sometimes quills are harvested by throwing a blanket over a porcupine, thereby collecting the quills without harming the animal.
  • Slow-moving and nearsighted, porcupines are nevertheless intelligent animals with excellent memories, and have lifespans of up to 30 years.
In-Person Boater Coaching
with Randy Johnson, Power Squadron Trainer
August 25 at 9:00 a.m. Ojibway Back Docks
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For anyone who is interested in one to one student/coach sessions, Randy has set up two 1 hour sessions on the signup sheet found at the MP office door
  • fully vaccinated and
  • wishing some in-person boater coaching (how to dock that boat in the wind),
Randy will meet you at the back Ojibway docks.

Bring your own boat and learn from the Pro! Sign Ups at Marine Patrol Hut
August 2021
Sailing pic new
PaBIA Sailing Races Saturday, August 28 @ 2:00 p.m.

Check out the Sailing eBlast for all the particulars!

In order to get the complete sailing and rendezvous information, you need to receive the Sailing eBlasts. If you are not receiving these regular eBlasts, please contact Margie Wheler.
GBB Climate Speedier.png
GBB - Climate Action:
Thursday, August 26, 2021 10:00 AM EST   

Project SPEEDIER aims to create a grid that builds towards a net-zero smart community in the Town of Parry Sound. This is a unique opportunity where a rural municipality is pledging to be net-zero in partnership with Bracebridge Generation.
GBF logo protecting your water
GBF Webinar on Plastics
Join GBF's Lunchtime Webinar on
Tackling Plastic Pollution

Georgian Bay Forever’s Tackling Plastic Pollution Webinar Series is a collection of one hour webinars aimed at raising awareness about the abundance of plastic litter entering our local and global waterways. Each webinar will end with descriptions of programs GBF has put in place to combat each issue and ways and alternatives you can implement in your life to reduce plastic waste.
The lunch-time webinar is:

Plastic Waters: 
Thursday, August 26th @ 12 - 1 pm
Lakes Michigan/Huron Water Levels Aug 23 2021 To better read the charts, please click on the chart for the Daily or Six Month Forecast Water level chart and the corresponding websites
Water Level Legend 2021
PaBIA Cover 2021
Yearbook Update! (as of Aug 17th)

With each eBlast, we will provide you a list of names for those members who have provided updated contact information. The details of all the changes since the 2021 yearbook came out in late April are provided in THIS printable format for you to print out and insert into your own Yearbook!
Huggins, Elizabeth (Buffi) (new addition)

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on communications to its members
in accordance with the
PaBIA's MIssion is to unite our island and coastal community while preserving and protecting
its unique natural environment, supporting community recreation involvement and safety. and
engaging with relevant organizations to help us achieve the vision of the Association