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The Inspection and Protection Division identifies and routinely monitors areas of concern that may lead to violations of the Watershed Rules and Regulations, such as: residential drainage issues, construction projects, residential septic issues, nutrient application (ag/non-ag), and streambank erosion.

WATERSHED MONITORING

Shoreline Surveys

When lake levels are low, typically during the late fall and early spring, Inspection and Protection Division staff  will walk sections of the shoreline to assess conditions and note issues that could impact water quality ("areas of concern"). 

Tile Drain Outlets

 

If subsurface tile drain outlets are displaying abnormal characteristics or odorous discharges, the Inspection and Protection Division will investigate further to try and determine the cause of the issue.

 
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Construction Projects

Watershed inspectors conduct regulatory inspections throughout the watershed area for potential water quality risks. Constructions projects can have a large impact on water quality if sediment and erosion controls are not implemented correctly to prevent storm water runoff from entering waterways. 
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Residential Septic Systems

The inspection and protection division responds to problems within the watershed regarding septic damage and spills, in addition to health department and other local implementation groups. This is to assess if a septic leak or spill may affect water quality within the watershed. Due to the Owasco Lake Watershed Rules and Regulations section 104.1, sewage disposal and or discharges are prohibited from entering the lake, its watercourses, on or beneath the surface of the ground or watershed within 500 feet of the lake or it's watercourses unless otherwise permitted. 
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Streambank Erosion

Stream bank erosion cause turbidity and nutrient loading to streams, which will ultimately end up depositing into the lake. Turbidity can cause many problems within streams such as: low light levels due to particle suspension which can hinder aquatic species reproduction, bacteria and heavy metals often attach themselves to sediments, it can provide food and shelter for pathogens through an increase in nutrient concentration as sediments are deposited within the waterways or waterbody .
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Invasive Species Removal

Staff join partnering programs and groups to assist with invasive species removal throughout the watershed. Invasive species constrict the ability for many native species to grow and prosper in their environments. The removal of these invasive species helps allow for growth and regeneration of native species with less competition and constraints. 
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