Making the Credit River a better place
Doing their part to overcome the build-up of greenhouse gases and also rehabilitate the Credit River and its banks, the Credit River Anglers Association (CRAA) received a grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation for $213,600 over the next three years for their ongoing efforts.
In the past twenty years, CRAA has planted 405,000 trees in the Credit Valley watershed. The new trees replace the forests logged and leveled for farmland in the 19th century. With the removal of its trees, and the damming of the Credit River for power and irrigation, soil ran off into the river, filing it with silt. Unprotected by its canopy of trees, the Credit River heated up in the summer, killing many native species of fish. The dams mae it impossible for the salmon to swim upstream to spawn.
Beginning in the 1980s, and continuing to the present day, the Credit River Anglers Association and other bodies, have restored many trees to the banks of the Credit River, stopping the runoff of soil and allowing the shade to cool the Credit’s waters. Many dams have been removed over the years. Today, the salmon are physically lifted over the two remaining dams: in Huttonville and in Norval, near Georgetown. The CRAA and other conservation groups today operate fish ladders; lift fish over the remaining dams; transport spawning fish past barriers; operate a fish hatchery; stock the river; rehabilitate streams and tributaries of the Credit; and conduct research, education and public outreach.
Established in 1989, CRAA became a non-profit in 1990. It has stocked more than 1.5 million Steelhead, Brown Trout and Atlantic Salmon in the Credit River. Each year, CRAA hosts at least one tree-planting, and does garbage clean-ups and fish stocking. In a typical year, CRAA will plant about 18,000 trees. More significantly, they ensure that the new saplings are protected from beavers, and get a chance to take root and grow.