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Click to send email The Environment    

The most important ecological region of a lake or river is the area near the shore called the “ribbon of life”. It is made up of two sections: a water section known as the littoral zone and a land section known as the flood plain.

The littoral zone is that part of the lake or river where sunlight can reach the bottom. As a general rule of thumb, it means the area containing rooted plants. The flood plain is that area which naturally stores excess water during floods. As much as 90 percent of living things in a lake or river are found within this ribbon of life. Disruptions to this zone have severe consequences on the ecological health of the whole region.

If you are planning on adding to or modifying your waterfront, there are obviously environmental concerns to consider. Lake and river beds are public lands, falling under the management control of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR). In the case of the Rideau System, designated a Canadian heritage river, management control lies with Parks Canada. Issues of fish habitat are covered under the Federal Fisheries Act as administered by local Conservation Authorities and/or the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO).

The conventional solid dock built on cribs or concrete foundations can disrupt shorelines and littoral zones. They can alter shoreline currents, remove fish and marine habitat, and as such, require a special permits.

St. Lawrence Docks offers environmentally sound alternatives to a conventional dock. Our team can facilitate the acquisition of necessary approvals from appropriate environmental agencies. As well as being environmentally sound, our docking systems are often more economical than a conventional dock over the long term.

Floating Docks
These docks are the least disruptive given they don't touch the bed of the lake or river, nor do they obstruct currents, fish or plant communities. Designed to be stable and costing about the same as a fixed dock, our floating docks are much less susceptible to ice damage and subsequent maintenance. They can be used for any water depth as well as shorelines with heavy currents. They also float up and down with changing water levels. No more wet feet in the spring or using a ladder to get down into your boat in fall.

Post Supported Docks
These are a good alternative for small docks or docks in shallow water (up to 7 feet of water). They can also be raised in the winter, optimizing the life of the docking system.

Flotation
Our floats are manufactured from linear, virgin polyethylene resin containing UV inhibitors and carbon black pigment to protect against ultra violet degradation. This resin offers a balance of toughness, rigidity, environmental stress, crack resistance and low temperature impact performance unmatched by any other material. The polyethylene resin used is a food grade material and will not contaminate the waterway.

If you are planning to build a dock on the waters of the Rideau Canal (including Dog Lake, Adams Lake and part of the Tay River) then consult Guidelines for Dock Construction on the Rideau Canal.

For more information view the Ministry of Natural Resources fact sheet on Fish Habitat, Docks & Boathouses.




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