The Kettle Creek watershed’s diverse flora and fauna is due in large part to its geographic location within the Carolinian Life Zone. This zone is affectionately known as the “banana belt” of Canada due to warm annual temperatures and mild winters. However, the area is also the most developed part of southern Ontario and the natural habitat is facing increased pressure from human activities. Staff monitor a variety of species in the watershed such as fish and species at risk since these communities can be key indicators of watershed health.
Nature & Wildlife
Fish communities can be used as indicators of localized, temporal environmental conditions such as in-stream habitat, water quality and water temperature. Cool water species, such as the introduced Rainbow Trout can be found in Little Creek, Mill Creek and Lower Kettle Creek. Generally, the Kettle Creek watershed supports a warm water fishery and boasts several species of interest for sport fishing including largemouth and smallmouth bass, panfish and catfish.
Every year, KCCA conducts screening surveys in areas of interest to generate a list of the common fish species found in different bodies of water. A screening survey characterizes the fish community at a site provided that all habitats are sampled. This type of survey also provides qualitative data on the species abundance at a site.
Invasive species are a significant threat to the Kettle Creek watershed with hundreds of invasive species infiltrating lakes, rivers and forests. This puts native fish, plants and animals and their habitats at risk. Invasive species outcompete native species for resources, directly kill other species, introduce disease or hybridize with native species and aggressively take over their habitat which can adversely impact the environment, the economy, or society, including human health. Invasive species can be spread with the help of humans, animals, wind and water. After an invasive species arrives it is almost impossible to remove it. This can cause irreparable damage to important habitats and ecosystems.
Some of the common invasive wildlife species found in the watershed are:
- Zebra and Quagga Mussels
- Sponge Moth (formerly known as Gypsy Moth)
- Emerald Ash Borer
For more information on how to identify and prevent the spread of invasive species, visit Ontario’s Invasive Species Awareness Program.
For information on invasive plant species in the Kettle Creek watershed and ways you can control them on your own property, see the Invasive Species Management page of our website.
A selection of wildlife found in the watershed.