WWF-Canada Blog:
Freshwater


Go with the Flow!

March 17-23 is Canada Water Week.  This is a time for a coast-to-coast celebration of Canada’s waterways leading up to World Water Day on March 22. 

In Canada, we’re blessed with an abundance of water. Free-flowing lakes, streams and rivers are all a big part of the Canadian experience and many of us have fond memories of skating, swimming, boating, fishing or picnicking on our favourite waterways.

Lake Superior

Waves roll onto the rocky shoreline of False Dog Harbour, Lake Superior, Ontario, Canada.
© GaryAndJoanieMcGuffin.com / WWF-Canada

Healthy, flowing rivers are also important in the lives of Canada’s wildlife. Iconic animals, like salmon and beavers rely on the flow of fresh water. Lesser known species, like the coastal tailed frog, also depend on healthy streams.

tailed frog

One of the coastal rainforest’s most ancient species, the coastal tailed frog has adapted for life in fast, flowing streams. © Karen Pickett

So we can’t take for granted our good fortune as a water nation. The more water, humans take from our rivers – for agriculture, industry, development and other needs – the less nature has to meet its own needs. Without enough water at critical times of the year, life can become extremely difficult for fish, beavers, reptiles, birds and other aquatic animals.

salmon

Sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) in clear river water, Canada. © J. D. Taylor / WWF-Canada

How do we manage our water and how does that affect our wildlife? These are questions that need to be asked in all our decisions about water use. Here’s how WWF is working to ensure healthy waters continue to flow across Canada.

British Columbia:  WWF is pushing to have the flow needs of nature be counted among other water takers.

The Great Lakes: WWF want to see nature’s flow needs recognized in the International Joint Commission Plan 2014 for the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River.

The St. John RiverWe’re working to enable a dialogue about what a living river needs.

Visit wwf.ca during Canada Water Week to check out our new video. And to learn how Canada’s beaver, salmon and the ancient frog depend on healthy river flow to thrive and survive.