Super User

Super User

October 13, 2016

Surface Water Quantity

Water plays a central role in all activities within a watershed. The rain that falls on the ground flows to the river and sustains all forms of life. All physical and biological activities within a watershed are intimately connected to water. Therefore, the knowledge of its occurrence, distribution, movement and functions is indispensable in understanding a watershed and all the living beings therein.

Within the Rideau Valley, water levels and stream flow, precipitation and snowpack have been systematically recorded for many years.This information can be analyzed to understand various aspects of the water cycle (or hydrologic cycle) and their impacts on the watershed. Monitoring streamflow and precipitation allows water managers to identify risk-prone areas and better respond to drought or flood conditions.

October 13, 2016

Surface Water Quality

The RVCA has gathered information on surface water quality since the early 1970s. Today, the RVCA collects data four water quality monitoring programs:

  • Provincial Water Quality Monitoring Network (Water Chemistry)
  • RVCA Baseline Monitoring Program (Water Chemistry)
  • Watershed Watch (Water Chemistry)
  • Benthic Invertebrate Sampling (Water Biology)

Results from these monitoring programs are reviewed and reported on through our catchment and subwatershed reports.

October 13, 2016


Groundwater has only recently been recognized as a vital natural resource. Ground water is an important source of drinking water for many in the Rideau watershed. Contamination of local groundwater is a growing concern and groundwater flow in bedrock aquifers has only recently started to be characterized (theory, methods, tools and models specific to fractured rock aquifers). Groundwater as a “science” is still young.

Since 2005, RVCA has been coordinating the Source Protection Program for the Mississippi-Rideau Source Protection Region (MRSPR). This work has involved undertaking a number of technical studies and the development of source protection plan policies for the MRSPR to protect shared municipal drinking water sources within our watersheds. Additional information about the local source protection program is available here:

Currently, the groundwater program at RVCA is small and primarily focuses on being a source of expertise for municipal planning services related to rural drinking water. The program also provides support to development applications near wetlands and groundwater recharge and discharge areas.

RVCA looks to learn more about our groundwater resources and their specific roles in the local hydrological cycle. We monitor and gather information at 16 wells at 13 locations in the Rideau Valley as part of the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change’s (MOECC) Provincial Groundwater Monitoring Network (PGMN). The main goal of the PGMN program is to undertake long-term regional groundwater monitoring in order to be able to identify potential changes in groundwater quality or levels. RVCA also partners with provincial agencies, local municipalities and academia for special projects related to groundwater information management, subwatershed studies and groundwater surface water interactions.

October 13, 2016

Biology and Ecology

The streams and rivers in the Rideau Valley watershed are home to a variety of plants and animals.

RVCA staff collect information on the physical conditions of the watershed — vegetation, wetlands, shorelines, land uses. We also look at fish communities and benthic invertebrates. We look see how aquatic and terrestrial creatures interact with their environment. All this information is used to create a picture of the conditions of our streams, lakes, rivers and overall watershed. In turn, this information will set the management direction for the future.

Information is compiled and summarized in RVCA catchment reports and subwatershed reports.


The drought status in the Rideau River watershed remains at “Severe” because sustained flows in the streams and rivers have not been restored.

As has been the case all summer, rainfall has been very erratic with significant amounts recorded at some monitoring stations and very little at others. There has been enough rain in the last two weeks to make many watershed residents forget that there is still a drought. Lawns are green. Farm crops are close to being ready for harvest.

Recent heavy but localized rain was not sufficient to change the drought status in the Rideau River watershed from “Severe.”

Streamflows and lake levels continue to decline throughout the watershed. At the climate station at Kemptville, 44 millimetres of rain was recorded on September 10. Both Smiths Falls and Rideau Ferry received 26 but all of 2 mm was recorded at the station at Innisville east of Perth. Where the heavier rainfall occurred, levels increased but they quickly fell back to where they had been.

  • RVCF colour Low Res
  • City Stream Watch Logo FINAL
  • cfo logo
  • canada
  • ontario
  • Ottawa
  • ncc
  • hat
  • shell
  • OFS
  • southbank
  • osc logo
  • Jock
  • Tay
  • HSC Logo
  • ferguslea logo
  • Walmart cmyk
  • abbott
  • Red Dot sponsorship 001
  • images64QKP5H2
  • OSFlogo5
  • EVG Logo EN RGB tag
  • Helen McCrea Peacock Foundation
September 08, 2016

Contact Us

Rideau Valley Conservation Authority
PO Box 599, 3889 Rideau Valley Drive
Manotick, Ontario K4M 1A5 (corner of Prince of Wales & Rideau Valley Drive)

Hours of Operation:  8:30 a.m to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday

Phone:  613-692-3571  |  1-800-267-3504 (toll-free)

Fax:  613-692-0831


The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority is headquarters to :
Ottawa Septic System Office
Mississippi-Rideau Source Protection Office
LandOwner Resource Centre

Staff Directory  Board of Directors

 facebook new  twitter new  youtube new
September 07, 2016

Weather Watchers

Rideau Valley Conservation Authority promotes a volunteer program called CoCoRaHS which stands for Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network. It’s a non-profit network of volunteers who measure and map precipitation. This network started at the Colorado Climate Center at Colorado State University in 1998 and has expanded into Canada.

We are looking for volunteers that can record precipitation and enter the data into the CoCoRaHS website or App. Recording includes reading a gauge daily and can also include measuring snow in the winter months. Measuring locations are ideally areas that are open and not surrounded by trees or buildings as they interfere with the precipitation amounts.

CoCoRaHS is standardizing the data collected by having everyone use the same precipitation gauges. The gauge is offered at a discounted cost of $30 if you sign up on the CoCoRaHS website, however RVCA has a couple of gauges that we can give out.

For more information, please contact:
Justin Robert
Hydrometric Data Coordinator
Department of Engineering and Regulation
, ext. 1194

Additional Information:
Please check out the CoCoRaHS website
CoCoRaHS contact: Myles Weishar

Excellent videos on how to do everything and what CoCoRaHS is looking for:
CoCoRaHS in Canada

Watch for dates to help us plant trees and shoreline shrubs. Our Shoreline Naturalization Program, City Stream Watch Program and various other special projects often look for people to help.

Rideau Valley Conservation’s stewardship projects offer opportunities to get your hands dirty while taking action in your community. We partner with private landowners, watershed residents, municipalities, and agricultural and academic communities to protect and enhance our natural environment. From habitat enhancement, to tree plantings and clean-ups, your efforts will have an immediate and positive impact on the local environment, and contribute to long-term sustainability.

Follow our volunteer calendar for upcoming events.

Page 87 of 106

Contact Us

Rideau Valley Conservation Authority
3889 Rideau Valley Drive
Manotick, Ontario K4M 1A5

613-692-3571, 1-800-267-3504



Regular Hours: Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Member of: conservation ontario