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1.0 Long Lake Catchment: Facts

1.1 General/Physical Geography

Drainage Area

86 square kilometres; occupies 11 percent of the Tay River subwatershed; two percent of the Rideau Valley watershed.


Long Lake catchment resides within a transitionary area between the physiographic regions known as the Georgian Bay Fringe and the Algonquin Highlands. In the Tay River subwatershed, these ancient and hilly geologic regions are made up of such Precambrian rocks as marble, conglomerates, and dark or colour banded granite-like rocks. A veneer of glacial drift (glacial till, sand etc.) overlies the bedrock. 

Municipal Coverage

Central Frontenac Township: (86 km2; 100% of catchment)

Stream Length

All tributaries (including headwater streams): 178 km

1.2 Vulnerable Areas

Aquifer Vulnerability

Mississippi-Rideau Source Water Protection program has mapped two small areas in this catchment, to the centre and southwest, as a Significant Groundwater Recharge Areas and all of the catchment as a Highly Vulnerable Aquifer. There are no Well-Head Protection Areas in the catchment.

Wetland Hydrology

A watershed model developed by the RVCA in 2009 was used to study the hydrologic function of wetlands in the Rideau Valley Watershed, including those found in the Long Lake catchment.

1.3 Conditions at a Glance

Fish Community/Thermal Regime

Warm and cool water recreational and baitfish fishery with 19 species observed in Stag, Stub and Uens Creek during 2016.

Headwater Features

Dominated by wetland and natural features with a few features that have been straightened, historically. 


Instream/Riparian Habitat

Stub and Uens Creek: Low to high habitat complexity with increased habitat complexity observed in the upper reaches of each system within the catchment.  Dissolved oxygen conditions on Uens Creek in the upper reach fall below the guideline to support warmwater aquatic biota; however, sections in the middle and lower reaches are acceptable for warmwater species. Stub Creek results show sections in the lower and upper reaches within the threshold to support warmwater aquatic biota; however, its middle reach falls below the recommended threshold to support warmwater aquatic biota.

Land Cover Type (2014)
Percent 61 21 6 6 3 2 1
Land Cover Change (2008 to 2014)
Hectares -2 +2
Shoreline Cover Type (30 m. riparian area; 2014)
CatchmentPercentCarnahan Lake PercentLong Lake    PercentStreams*Percent
Wetland 46 Woodland 95 Woodland 56  Wetland 52
Woodland 42 Settlement 2 Settlement 23 Woodland 37
Crop-Pasture 6 Wetland 2 Wetland 12 Crop-Pasture 7
Settlement 2 Transportation 1 Transportation 6 Transportation 2
Meadow-Thicket 2 --- --- Crop-Pasture 3 Meadow-Thicket 1
Transportation     2 --- --- --- --- Settlement 1

* (includes Stag, Stubb, Uens Creek)


Significant Natural Features

Long Lake Blue Calcite Provincial Area of Natural and Scientific Interest, Earth Science.

Species at Risk (Elemental Occurrence)
StatusSpecies at Risk
Status Species at Risk
Endangered American Ginseng Henslow's Sparrow Northern Myotis Spotted Turtle
Threatened     Blanding's Turtle Bobolink Eastern Whip-poor-will ---
Special Concern Snapping Turtle --- --- ---
Water Quality for the Protection of Aquatic Life (2006 to 2017)
Carnahan LakeLong LakeStub Creek Uens Creek
Poor to Fair Fair to Good Good Fair

Water Wells

Approximately 200 operational private water wells in the Long Lake catchment. Groundwater uses are mainly domestic but also include livestock water supplies.

1.4 Catchment Care

Environmental Management

Three Environmental Compliance Approvals were sought in the catchment for private water supplies and sewage works.

Environmental Monitoring

Chemical surface (in-stream/lake) water quality collection by the RVCA since 2003 (see Section 2 of this report).

Fish survey and stream characterization survey by the RVCA on Stag, Stub and Uens Creek in 2016 included taking measurements and recording observations on instream habitat, bank stability, other attributes and preparing a temperature profile (see Section 3 of this report).

Thirty-three drainage feature assessments were conducted by the RVCA in 2016 at road crossings in the catchment. The protocol measures zero, first and second order headwater drainage features and is a rapid assessment method characterizing the amount of water, sediment transport, and storage capacity within headwater drainage features. (see Section 3.4 of this report).

Classification of Long Lake catchment land cover types derived by the RVCA from colour aerial photography that was acquired during the spring of 2008 and 2014 (see Section 4.1 of this report).

Groundwater chemistry information is available from the Ontario Geological Survey for one well (#13-AG-001) located in the catchment.


Two stewardship projects were completed by landowners with assistance from the RVCA (see Section 5 of this report).