Message from the RAP Coordinator

This month, we're so pleased to recognize the many years of hard work of one of Detroit River's most dedicated and passionate supporters. Tom Henderson, the Detroit River Canadian Cleanup's Public Advisory Council Chair, is this year's recipient of Essex Region Conservation's Volunteer Award. Please read about Tom's many accomplishments below. A sincere thank you to Tom from all of the Detroit River Canadian Cleanup partners for his many years of work towards the health of the Detroit River!

Claire Sanders
Remedial Action Plan Coordinator
Detroit River Canadian Cleanup
Congratulations Tom Henderson, DRCC PAC Chair and 2016 Conservation Award Winner!
Each year, the Essex Region Conservation presents awards to recognize organizations and individuals who have made a difference in sustaining and enriching the area. This year, we're pleased to announce Tom Henderson is the recipient of the Volunteer Award.

Tom has been a long-time environmental advocate. He has mentored many by planting thousands of native trees, and leading and participating in countless river cleanups, all of which have contributed to the Essex Region's improving environment.
His volunteer efforts have gone on for decades. He participated in stream cleanups with his late son, Jim, during his years as a student at Concord Elementary School. He was so inspired, that Tom went on the help establish the Little River Enhancement Group, affectionately known as 'Lil REG. The work of this group over the past 25 years has won much recognition for their positive environmental outcomes, as well as educating the public regarding the importance of the Little River to our community. Thanks in large part to the volunteer efforts of Tom and the group, this watershed is now alive with a growing abundance of flora and fauna.

Tom has dedicated much of his retired life to continuing his environmental involvement. He has been involved in the Detroit River Canadian Cleanup since the late 90s, and continues to serve as Chair of its Public Advisory Council.   He is an effective communicator through emails, phone calls, letters to the editor and in person meetings. He is regularly in contact with federal, provincial and city officials to request and provide information regarding issues in our local environment. He has attended countless open houses and meetings of environmental interest about the Little River and Detroit River Watersheds, and has been especially vigilant in his efforts to bring attention to the importance of Ojibway Shores.

Tom Henderson has the ability and credibility to bring community environmentalists together to pool their resources in a successful effort to improve the quality of life for the plants, wildlife and people of Essex County. He is a sincere and diligent environmental steward.
His nominators state: "It has been an honour to work with Tom improving the ecosystem health of the Little River and Detroit River Watersheds."

For more information about the Essex Region Conservation Authority's Annual General Meeting and other award recipients, please visit this link here.  

Lower Detroit  River IBA Waterbird Count
Members of the Essex County Field Naturalists'
Photo and count information courtesy of Jeremy Hatt
C lub
were out along the Lower Detroit River last Saturday for the first of two days of counting for the Important Bird Areas (IBA) program. January 28th was the first survey focused on the Lower Detroit River Important Bird and Biodiversity Area. The IBA, known for large congregations of Canvasbacks and Redheads, shown to the right. The unfrozen lake and river, plus winds making the lake turbulent, was unfortunate weather for viewing waterfowl.

Despite this, it was a successful survey with 11 participants who in groups of 2 to 5 volunteers surveyed 11 spots along the river from Willowood on Lake Erie to Gil Maure Park in LaSalle. One participant, Jeremy Hatt, deserves special mention for doing an amazing job organizing the event, survey locations, and volunteers!

Some stats; there was a total of 23 species found, and 4,391 individual birds counted (4,098 of them waterfowl). Numbers for trigger species of the IBA were 1,565 Canvasbacks, and 1,790 Redheads. These numbers are low compared to even a few weeks earlier when 13,200 Canvasbacks were recorded on the river! However, timing is unpredictable, and there is another chance on February 25th when the second IBA waterfowl survey will take place. Thanks to all of the volunteers who went out to the river on a windy winter day. The data you contribute to Bird Studies Canada and the IBA Program is invaluable.

The globally significant Lower Detroit River IBA, which extends from the north end of Fighting Island to the mouth at Lake Erie, is important for large congregations of birds and waterfowl. Unfortunately, the strong winds and choppy water meant there weren't too many ducks to be counted last weekend. But earlier in January, over 10,000 Canvasbacks were seen along the river, which is over 1% of the estimated population of the species. It's an incredible sight to see that many ducks rafting along or taking flight, so if you're ever in Amherstburg in the winter months, take a walk along the river and see for yourself!
International Joint Commission Draft Report for Public Comment
The draft Triennial Assessment of Progress (TAP) report under the 2012 Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, the International Joint Commission commends Canada and the United States was released January 2017 to obtain public input until April 15th 2017. All comments regarding the draft TAP report as well as the two countries' progress report can be sent to and online at

Public meetings also will be held at the following locations:
March 2, 2017: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
March 21, 2017: Detroit, Michigan and Toledo, Ohio
March 22, 2017: Sarnia, Ontario
March 28, 2017: Buffalo, New York
March 29, 2017: St. Catharines, Ontario
For full details please visit the DRCC site here. 
Environment Canada Great Lakes Videos
With the recent theme, "The Great Lakes," Environment and Climate Change Canada released a series of short videos highlighting the natural, economic and recreational values. Enjoy the videos here.
Green Speaker Series: Invasive Phragmites Expert Panel Event
In case you missed WECEC and ERCA's Invasive Phragmites Panel, watch the 3 presentations here and learn about how the Town of Kingsville, Town of Leamington, and the Ontario Invasive Plant Council are tackling invasive Phragmites here.
Sustain Our Great Lakes 2017 Funding Opportunity
The Sustain Our Great Lakes program is soliciting proposals to improve habitat and water quality in the Great Lakes basin. The program will award grants for: 1) stream habitat improvements; 2) coastal wetland habitat improvements; and 3) green storm water infrastructure in Great Lakes shoreline cities. Up to $7.8 million is expected to be available for grant awards in 2017.

To be eligible for funding, projects must occur within the Great Lakes basin. Eligible applicants include non-profit organizations, educational institutions, and state, tribal and local governments. Up to $7.8 million is expected to be available for grant awards. Individual awards will range from $50,000 to $1.5 million.

Please visit to complete the requirements for full proposal submission.
Extra! Extra! Read all about it!   
The Detroit River in the news. Here are some links to articles that may pique your interest. Click the link  to read on.  
Upcoming Events  
Save the date for these great local events! Contact the organizer for more information. 
World Wetlands Day
Thursday February 2nd 2017, all day, International 
Each year, World Wetlands Day is recognized on February 2nd, which marks the anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance in Ramsar, Iran on February 2nd 1971. This internationally celebrated day began in 1997 with the goal to raise awareness of the importance of wetlands, the value and benefit they play in communities, and promote conservation of these areas. Check out the Nature Conservancy of Canada's quiz, " Do you know why wetlands matter?" and visit the Detroit River Canadian Cleanup's World Wetlands Day page online!  
Shiver on the River
Saturday February 4th 2017, 10am to 3pm, Belle Isle Casino, Detroit MI  
Shiver on the River is a family oriented event, designed to bring people down to the river. It is a great opportunity to get outside in the winter and discover the many wonderful attractions at Belle Isle Park.

  Ecology Family Fair at the Belle Isle Casino 10 A.M. - 3 P.M.
  • Exhibits, Displays and Refreshments ~ Environmental Arts and Crafts for Kids
  • Entertainment by Bob Kat Caricatures and Magic John Children's Magician
  • Meet the Authors of Wanda and Winky & Water Walkers!
Fun all around Belle Isle - Facility Hours
  • Belle Isle Aquarium: 10 A.M. - 4 P.M.
  • Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory: 10 A.M. - 5 P.M.
  • Belle Isle Nature Zoo: 10 A.M.- 4 P.M.
  • Dossin Museum: 11 A.M. - 4 P.M.
  • Belle Isle Boat Club (Rowers): 10 A.M. - 4 P.M.
  • Yacht Club: Tours Available
  • Coast Guard Station: 10 A.M. - 3 P.M. PLUS Ice Rescue Demonstration 2 P.M. @ Coast Guard Station (street parking available)
Directions from Windsor, ON
Take the
Detroit Windsor Tunnel to the United States. Take a right on E Jefferson Ave. Take a slight right to E Grand Blvd and cross the MacArthur Bridge. Merge onto Sunset Drive and stay right to arrive on Casino Way.
For more information contact Friends of the Detroit River
(734) 288 - 3889 ~
20600 Eureka Rd.,
Suite 313
Taylor, MI 48180
Royal Astronomical Society of Canada - Windsor Centre - Open House
Saturday February 4th 2017, 7pm, Hallam Observatory - 3989 South Middle Road 
The Hallam Observatory is open to the public one evening every month. This event is "weather permitting" as the telescopes cannot see through clouds. For more information about future Hallam Observatory open house dates view the open house page and for a map/directions to the Hallam Observatory click here.
Spiders of Ontario - Essex County Field Naturalists' Club
Thursday February 8th 2017, Ojibway Nature Centre, 5200 Matchette Road, Windsor, ON, 7:30pm 
Tom Mason has more than 32 years' experience in the zoo world. He earned a BSc University of Guelph and a diploma in zoo keeping from Seneca College,and served as the Curator of Invertebrates at the Toronto Zoo and acting Curator of Birds at the Toronto Zoo. He has traveled and studied natural ecosystems on 5 continents. Today, he still leads tours for fish and reptile enthusiasts to Costa Rica. Tom has worked on three recovery teams for Ontario's endangered species,and has worked on conservation projects in Cuba and Costa Rica. In addition, Tom has coaxed more than 50 species of reptiles and amphibians to reproduce in captivity.Tom will be speaking on those eight legged creatures that most love to hate, the largely misunderstood Spiders of Ontario. For more information please contact: Carl Maiolani:
Science Saturday
Saturday February 11th 2017, Belle Isle Aquarium, 12pm to 3pm, Detroit, MI   
Allow guest speakers to lead you on an interesting science journey at Science Saturday! Lectures will be twenty minutes in length each and are held at 12pm, 1pm and 2pm. Come and learn something new! For more information please e-mail info@belleisleconservancy.rg or visit their website here for past presentations.
Upper Detroit River Waterfowl Hike
Sunday February 12th 2017, Lakeview Marina, 9200 Riverside Drive East Windsor, Ontario, 12pm 
Meet Paul Desjardin at Lakeview Marina at 12 noon to see a variety of waterfowl and maybe even some bald eagles! For more information please contact: Carl Maiolani:
Belle Isle Park Advisory Committee Meeting
Thursday February 16th 2017, 9:00am to 11:00am, Belle Isle Nature Zoo, Flynn Pavilion - Near Intersection of Picnic Way & Loiter Way, Belle Isle, Detroit, MI, 48207
Please see their website for past agendas, meeting minutes, and additional information!
Stewardship Saturday
Saturday February 18th 2017, Belle Isle Park, 9am to 12pm, Detroit, MI   
Join the DRN and Belle Isle Conservancy for Stewardship Saturdays. For questions or more information please e-mail Laurel Malvitz-Draper, DNR Resource Steward for the Stewardship Unit at
Tree Planting and Care Workshop
Tuesday February 21st 2017, 6:30pm to 8:00pm. Essex Civic Centre, Committee Room C. 360 Fairview Avenue W, Essex, ON.    
This exciting and dynamic workshop will discuss ways in which you can get involved in the reforestation of Essex County. Learn about the environmental benefits of tree planting, grants and financial assistance to landowners for planting trees, the different tree planting techniques and the ways to care for your future forests and special shade trees. Event is free but pre-registration is required. Space is limited. Register to attend the event by clicking here.
Lake Erie Millennium Network
February 21 to 23 2017, University of Windsor 

This 8th biennial conference is a series of events dealing with Lake Erie environmental issues. February 21-23, 2017 at the University of Windsor. For more information please visit their site here.  

Lower Detroit  River IBA Waterbird Count
Saturday February 25th 2016, Time and location TBD.  
There will be a waterbird count event in the Lower Detroit River IBA on February 25th 2017. The activity will consist of of identifying waterbirds (mostly ducks) on the river in predetermined locations. Please contact the Ontario IBA Coordinator for all details at:
Reptiles and Amphibians of Ontario
Sunday February 26th 2017, Ojibway Nature Centre, 5200 Matchette Road, Windsor, ON, 2pm 
Steve Marks (known locally as Steve the Snake Guy) will present an in depth talk about Ontario's Amphibians & Reptiles, how to responsibly appreciate them in the wild and how to actually help the populations we still have in our province.This presentation will be lengthy. For more information please contact: Carl Maiolani: 
Essex County Field Naturalists' Club Annual General Meeting
Wednesday March 8th 2017,
Join the Essex County Field Naturalists Club for their Annual General Meeting, try your hand at the Quizmaster's latest brain-busters, bid on some silent auction items, and enjoy light snacks and beverages. For more information please contact: Carl Maiolani:
Tree ID and Appreciation Walk
Sunday March 12th 2017, Ojibway Nature Centre, 5200 Matchette Road, Windsor, ON, 2pm 
Join Dave Kraus for an informative walk around the Ojibway Nature Centre and surrounding trails as he shares knowledge and tips for identifying trees as well as interesting facts about them! The walk will begin at 2pm. For more information please contact: Carl Maiolani:
2017 Conference on Great Lakes Research
The 60th annual conference on Great Lakes research is scheduled from May 15-19, 2017 at the Cobo Center in Detroit. The focus will be the theme "From Cities to Farms: Shaping Great Lakes Ecosystems." For more information please visit their site 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. 

Y ou are receiving this email because you have expressed an interest in Detroit River Canadian Cleanup.  Don't miss out on r eceiving our emails! We ask that you reconfirm your subscription to ensure you  continue receiving emails from us.  <ConfirmOptIn>Click here</ConfirmOptIn> to confirm  your interest in receiving our emails.

The DRCC initiative is a partnership between government, industry, academics, as well as environmental and community organizations that work together to improve the Detroit River ecosystem through a Remedial Action Plan. Our main goal is to remove the River from the list of Great Lakes Areas of Concern.