Get out and go fishing for free

Fishing is a good stress reliever and the provincial government thinks it could help provide some stress relief from the current pandemic situation.

Ontario’s annual “fish for free” season for families is extended to July 19 and the South Nation Conservation Authority (SNC) is promoting several of its own conservation areas and other popular fishing sites that it helps maintain with municipal partnerships.

Anglers needing a break from being homebound during the pandemic are encouraged to take advantage of the fishing opportunities at the following sites: Casselman’s High Falls Conservation Area, the Saint-Albert Conservation Area, the Crysler Park Boat Launch, the Embrun Boat Launch, the Chesterville Boat Launch and docks, the Spencerville Mill Boat Launch, Winchester’s Cass Bridge Conservation Area, the Jessup’s Falls Conservation Area in Plantagenet, the Oak Valley Pioneer Park Conservation Area at Winchester Springs.

Social distancing and other pandemic protection guidelines apply to all who go fishing or picnicking at the SNC sites. Safe boating practices are also recommended for anyone going out on the water from any of the sites. Also, avoid taking boats within 23 metres of any of the flood-control dams located in the watershed.

Anglers who take advantage of the family-free fishing season in the SNC watershed can expect to find any one of 72 species of native fish tugging on their line. That includes smallmouth bass, pike, crappie, walleye, catfish, carp, and muskie.

Work continues on the Ecolomondo project, a “green” addition to Hawkesbury’s industrial sector and the company is optimistic about having its new showpiece recycling facility ready soon.