GFM Network News


Val and Gordon Turner with their grandchildren.

Turner family recognized for conservation efforts

Though not active farmers, Val and Gordon Turner are keen stewards of their land

The Redboine Watershed District (RBWD) is recognizing Gordon and Val Turner for their impact on the landscape through water and soil conservation programs. “They are a very community-minded couple that has always been interested in conservation and nature,” said RBWD board member Reg Marginet. “They have been such a benefit to our district. We are pleased to

One of Al Ayotte’s three water retention dams.

Water retention projects show promise for drought protection

Funds from the MHHC-stewarded GROW trust has allowed watershed districts to ramp up water conservation projects

It was a simple equation for Al Ayotte. It was a dry 2020 summer, and water was seeping out of his sandy-soiled pasture into a drain and flowing off his property. “It doesn’t make sense, and it gets me mad,” he said. “Let’s go reverse. Let’s pile up some water and let the water go


It’s not just a pretty sight, a natural landscape also benefits everyone.

What’s the value of our natural landscapes?

Taking care of the environment isn’t free and should be compensated

If you have looked around your local countryside, you may have noticed that we are losing our trees. This is considered progress as we are developing more arable land to grow more food which makes our farms more profitable. But on the other side of the coin, we need the benefits that natural landscapes provide

Seymour named watersheds builder

Annual award from Manitoba Association of Watersheds recognizes outstanding contributions

Murray Seymour has been awarded the 2020 Watershed District Builder Award. The annual award “… recognizes the outstanding contributions of individuals directly associated with the growth and success of watershed districts in Manitoba.” Seymour was named this year’s recipient during the Manitoba Association of Watershed Districts virtual conference, held Dec. 8. “My greatest reward was being chair of

Premier Brian Pallister and Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Minister Blaine Pedersen visited several GROW (Growing Outcomes in Watersheds) projects July 22, including this one near Souris. The pothole in the background usually floods, drowning the crop and wasting the farmer’s investment in inputs. Now the farmer is getting an annual payment not to seed those temporary wetlands and he will seed them to water-tolerant forages and harvest the hay. Yasmin Keeler (l), co-manager, Souris River Watershed District (SRWD), Doyle Piwniuk, MLA for Turtle Mountain, Premier Brian Pallister, Lloyd Atcheson, chair SRWD, Dean Brooker, co-manager SRWD, and Blaine Pedersen, Manitoba agriculture and resources minister.

Manitoba government-funded trust leverages millions for watershed projects

The Manitoba Habitat Heritage Corporation has announced $5.6 million in funding for new conservation projects under the Growing Outcomes in Watersheds (GROW) Trust and the Conservation Trust. The trusts, set up by the Manitoba government, will help fund watershed programs to improve the environment and assist farmers in perpetuity. And as hoped, when the trust


Construction of a dam and water retention project at Swan Lake First Nation.

Living Labs projects wrap up first year

Going into the second year of the project, impacts already being felt

Despite a slow start, the teams behind the Living Labs — Eastern Prairies are diving into field research, says a newsletter from Manitoba Watersheds. “There have been some recent challenges with the weather and COVID-19, which have slowed us from getting into the field,” wrote researcher John Fitzmaurice in Manitoba Watersheds’ spring newsletter. “I can assure you that we

Watershed districts optimistic about provincial funding

Watershed districts optimistic about provincial funding

The four per cent increase in funds may mean waiting municipalities can join the watershed district program

A funding increase should give Manitoba’s watershed districts some room to expand after previously maxing out provincial funds. “It’s a signal that the Manitoba government believes in the value of our work and wants to work with us to fill the blank spots on our map,” said Ray Frey, chair of the Manitoba Association of Watersheds

A flooded field in the RM of St. Andrews, March 2017.

Province on track to proclaim watershed regulations

The province says it is on track to proclaim regulations that would transform conservation districts into watershed districts, but that didn’t stop district members from pressing for a promise. Dori Gingera-Beauchemin, deputy minister of agriculture and resource development, held a Q-and-A with Manitoba Conservation Districts Association members during their annual conference in Winnipeg on Dec.


“Water does not follow political or administrative boundaries.” – Rochelle Squires.

Manitoba’s conservation districts to be revamped

Plans to realign districts along watershed lines have been in discussion for years

A rearranging of Manitoba’s conservation districts into ‘watershed districts’ should streamline management and bring the districts more into line with their original intent. “Water does not follow political or administrative boundaries,” said Rochelle Squires, then minister of sustainable development, in a news release Oct. 11. “These proposed changes support our made-in-Manitoba climate and green plan

“The marsh is not a marsh right now. It is a muddy water waste hole.” – Steve Strang, Red River Basin Commission.

Red tape sees marsh renewal project delayed

A pilot project would begin to restore the Netley-Libau marsh, which once filtered harmful nutrients out of the water flowing into Lake Winnipeg

A pilot project to revitalize the “kidney” of Lake Winnipeg will be delayed until next year due to red tape, the project committee announced August 30. “Every day that passes by is a day the Netley Marsh (which is the largest coastal wetlands in North America) could begin its journey back to being a healthy