Otty Lake Association

Archived Homepage Stories


radon houseRadon Testing

Elevated radon levels have been found in homes in every region of the country. Long term exposure to radon gas is the second leading cause of lung cancer. The only way to know for sure is to test for radon.

About 90 interested residents attended the evening information presentation at the Perth Pool April 2019. Thanks to our guest speakers: Manual Husain, Health Canada Regional Radiation Specialist and Bob Wood, Radiation Mitigation Specialist with Mr. Radon, who also provided five free Radonova long term home radon test kits.

The local Health Unit makes makes test kits available to residents for $20. Check here as they are not available at all locations.

hazardous wasteHousehold Hazardous Waste Depots Now Open

Local household hazardous waste (HHW) depots are now open. Tay Valley residents can use the Middleville site from May 22 to Oct. 9, DNE residents should use the depot in Carleton Place, May 22 - Sept. 4. Both are Saturdays only!  See poster for location and items accepted. Be prepared to show proof of residency.

secchi diskState of the Lake Report

Nov. 10, 2020. This annual report provides a snapshot of lake conditions and environmental activities. While some programs were limited due to COVID 19, with the help of volunteers we have been able to maintain continuity of data. State of the Lake 2020 is the collaborative effort of Kirsten Brouse, Reid Kilburn and Murray Hunt, with contributions by Derek Smith, Kyla Haley, Rachel Roth, Jenepher Lennox-Terrion and Wally Robins.  

Shoreline Owner's Guide CoverA Shoreline Owner's Guide to

Healthy Waterfronts

This 28 page guide "offers you background information and advice on ways to make the most of your shoreline property while living in balance with your lake’s fragile ecosystem." There are sections on shorelines, docks, low impact recreation, animal proofing, aquatic plants and lots of other issues every lake front dweller should be aware of.

pin cherryShoreline Plant Sale 2021 - SOLD OUT

OLA members are invited to place an order for shoreline plants subsidized and made available through the RVCA. Two tree species ($2) and three shrub species ($4) are being offered. Place you order by April 11 as supplies are limited. Limit 5 plants per household. Pickup day will be Sat. June 12 at 134 Trillium Point Road. Please place your order with Wendy Coombs or call her at (613) 267-6949.   No order form required. Bring exact cash to pickup.  

Bass Video Bass Spawning Video

A pair of small mouth bass spawning on one of the installed spawning beds from the Otty Lake ‎fish and wildlife enhancement project. For additional photos, see our photo gallery.

Find out more about the Fish and Wildlife Enhancement project on the RVCA's Otty Lake web page. 

catchment report coverOtty Lake Catchment Report

The RVCA produces individual reports for the 14 catchments in the Tay River subwatershed.  These reports are produced every six years using data collected by the RVCA through its programs as well as local information provided by stakeholders.  Otty Lake Association representatives were given the opportunity to review the report before its release.


citizen scienceCitizen Science

Want to know how you as an individual can contribute to our collective knowledge of the natural world? There are loads of opportunities for you to participate by sharing your observations of bats, birds, snow, invasive species, butterflies, worms, turtles and more. The Lake Links team put together this list of Ontario programs in preparation for this year's annual workshop.


dockThe Lure of the Lake

Some of the original Otty Lake cottages are mentioned in this newspaper piece by Kay Rogers. It comes from her book 'At Home in Tay Valley,' that celebrates the people, places and events in the history of Tay Valley Township and Lanark County.


Cottage in WinterHome and Cottage Security

Protect your property by reviewing these security tips for seasonal and permanent residents:

The Pike Lake Community Association (PLCA) compiled this list of security tips following a meeting of the Lake Networking Group and the OPP earlier this fall.  Thanks to the PLCA for sharing!  

FOCA suggests marking your personal items, recording serial numbers, and making a list of what you have left at the cottage in their Cottage Closing Tips.

 This OPP Security Guard Tip sheet is relevant to seasonal and permanent residents alike.


beaver cutting down treeTree Removal

If there is a tree on your property line that has died, or is in danger of falling where it would be a hazard, check if it is near a Hydro main line (Hydro's responsibility), a secondary Hydro line leading to your house (your responsibility), or in the Township's right of way (possibly Public Works' responsibility).

boy in motorboatBoating Safety is Everybody's Business  

A ten-year snapshot into boating and off-road incidents investigated by the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) has revealed that capsized boats and lack of safety equipment have been the most common factors in fatal boating incidents, while alcohol leads the list of factors in off-road vehicle (ORV) incidents.


Legacy Cottage Etching Lanark Legacy Cottages Recognized

Thirty Otty Lake families were recognized through the Lanark Legacy Cottage program for having been in their family for at least 50 years. Most of the families were on hand at our July 9th AGM to receive their personalized 8 x 10" plaques. Twenty families in Tay Valley Township and 10 families in Drummond North Elmsley were recognized. Since the AGM an additional 13 cottages were recognized by the program, administered by Tay Valley on behalf of the participating municipalities. See the updated list. This is a commemorative designation only, there are no legal restrictions associated with it.




Wild Parsnip - EOHULearn to Recognize Wild Parsnip 

You’ll want to learn to recognize this plant, wild parsnip, which is spreading rapidly in Eastern Ontario.  People coming in contact with the plant’s sap  have developed severe skin irritations.    This plant has a yellow umbrella-like top and saw tooth leaves. Wild parsnip can be controlled by pulling or digging, or by mowing if done at the right stage of its development.  Wear protective clothing and be extremely cautious when handling it, and be wary of picking wild flowers.



Naturalized ShorelineOtty Lake Shoreline Assessment Report 

The condition of the Otty Lake shoreline directly impacts on the health of Otty Lake. The recently completed Otty Lake Shoreline Assessment Summary Report is a new resource that provides baseline data that will help in the planning of future Otty Lake shoreline stewardship activities.  The Report is a lake-wide summary of the information gathered through the 2013 Love Your Lake surveying of 474 Otty Lake shoreline properties (totaling 93.3 % of the Otty Lake shoreline).


Occupied Nest Box

Wood Duck Nest Box Maintenance

If you have one of these boxes, be sure to clean it out and put in a fresh supply of wood shavings (not sawdust) this fall or winter.  Cavity-nesting ducks do not carry nesting materials and won’t choose an empty box.  Boxes are often not used the first year, but a duck may check it out for use the next year, so make sure it passes inspection!   (Photo at left is the interior of the nesting box at the Maple Glen recreation area, taken by Jennifer Lamoureux.)






Bass BabiesFish Habitat Monitoring

From Around the Rideau, May/June 2016: RVCA staff surveyed the installed spawning beds and brush bundles this spring. In
2016, 55 percent of the installed spawning nests were considered active as they were guarded by a male smallmouth bass, compared to 43 percent in 2015 and 41 percent in 2014. Several species of fish were observed around the installed brush bundles including largemouth bass, yellow perch, pumpkinseed, bluegill, rock bass and various minnows. The brush bundles appear to be providing excellent feeding habitat and cover habitat for a wide variety of fish. From more information contact Jennifer at

deer photo by Eric HansenHomemade Deer Repellant

If you get this inexpensive concoction brewing, you will have some ready to keep deer from munching away at your garden this spring.  You just need some eggs and a sealable jug to get started. 


Tree near Scout CampTVT Legacy Trees Program Launched

Tay Valley Township has announced the designation of an important tree in Maberly as the first to be recognized in the township’s new 200th Anniversary Legacy Tree Program.   A heritage plaque will be placed at the site in a ceremony next summer. 

The new Legacy Tree Program, one of the 200th Anniversary celebration activities, will recognize the role that trees and forestry played in this area’s early development.  Trees that have a unique value, because of age, size, or significant historical or social importance to the community, will be designated and receive a certificate and, where appropriate, a plaque.



carbon monoxide detectorCarbon Monoxide Detectors Mandatory in Ontario

Carbon monoxide (CO) detectors are now required near sleeping areas in all residential homes in Ontario.  This includes summer cottages, cabins, RVs, trailers or boats with sleeping quarters.  CO comes from the incomplete burning of carbon-based fuels . It is a colourless, odourless, tasteless, toxic gas that when breathed in can lead to illness and even death.  People are most at risk while they sleep. Batteries should be tested monthly, and replaced yearly.  The CO legislation came into effect October 15, 2014. 



Midland Painted TurtleCommunity Monitoring Opportunities

There are a number of ways that concerned citizens can help monitor wildlife and other natural phenomena in their own communities. If you are a keen observer of birds, butterflies, bumblebees, frogs, loons, or turtles, for example, consult this list.



algae on inlet

Algae, the Good

We normally only think about algae when they “go bad,” and because this tends to attract press, we might think it’s a fairly common occurrence. The simple and largely unrealized truth is that we’d be stupid, hungry and dead without algae.

So says Norman Yan in the FOCA's August 2014 Lake Stewards newsletter. Read how algae are a vital part of the lake ecosystem.

Weed Cutting

Cutting Aquatic Weeds

Waterfront property owners at Otty lake are entitled to cut and remove aquatic vegetation in a specified area in front of their properties, provided they comply with certain provincial regulations.  One of the requirements is to place the cut plant material “on dry land”.   See Other Water Issues page. 

However, if you see free floating weeds, do not assume a neighbour has cut them.  It  may also be the result of natural die-off or the weeds having been cut by motorboats. 

Campfires and Open Air Burning

campfire and canoeSmall, confined, supervised fires used to cook food (such as campfires) do not require a permit, but are not allowed during a burn ban. Any other open air burning, including burn barrels, requires a permit, although a new permit is not required every year.  Prior to the date the  burning is to take place, the person with the permit is required to contact the Administration office of the Fire Department.  You could be liable for costs incurred if you do not obtain a permit, or do not meet the conditions for burning laid out in the permit. Note that most years there is a Lanark County-wide fire ban between April 1 and May 15.

Permits can be obtained through Drummond/North Elmsley Tay Valley Fire Rescue Administration Office at 14 Sherbrooke St., Perth,  613-267-2596, or through the Tay or Drummond/North Elmsley Municipal offices.   Drummond/North Elmsley Tay Valley Fire Rescue Services operates with one full time Fire Chief, two volunteer Station Chiefs and 60 volunteers.