Tag Archives: Spencer Creek




Friday August 10 2012

“only trace amounts of rain expected 40% chance” you will not melt

Be aware of developing Thunder/Lighting Clouds/Wind and take cover- safely

Happy fisherman

One great delight is to see a child catch his or her first fish.The achievement an fascination in there eyes is worth there weight in Gold. Prizes will be rewarded to the three biggest {weighed} fish, for each species, so this includes Carp. Weights can reach very high for these large fish.

Big Carp

The Hamilton Harbour watershed covers an area of approximately 500 square kilometres at the western edge of Lake Ontario and is a region of great physiographic diversity as a result of extensive glacial and glaciofluvial processes. The watershed can be divided into four subwatersheds which drain into Hamilton Harbour and include Spencer Creek, Grindstone Creek, North Shore and Redhill Creek subwatersheds. The watershed supports diverse fish communities and offers unique aquatic habitats to both migratory and resident fish species. The Niagara Escarpment represents the region’s most prominent geological feature with its limestone and dolomite ridge bisecting the watershed as it extends from the Niagara River to Tobermory on the Bruce Peninsula.

Rainbow trout


Myself will be looking for the Wolf of the Lake (The Pike )

Bob’s Pike


Children and wildlife

The wetlands function as a seasonal fish nursery for Lake Ontario, and despite the historical degradation, most historical species of fish can still be found using Cootes Paradise and in increasing numbers. As with birds and plants the location is the biodiversity hotspot for Canada with over 60 species present. Each spring thousands of spawning fish migrate in through the fishway from the harbour and lake, laying eggs and leaving shortly after, allowing the marsh to function as a giant fish hatchery.


Annually between 5 and 20 million fish are produced for the lake depending on water levels and water pollution events. The species present reflect the degraded marsh habitat with the most common the Gizzard shad.

Rbg Fish-way escapee

Also common are night time predators species Channel Catfish and Brown Bullhead, along with invasive species such as Alewife and White Perch. Popular angling species present in limited numbers include pike, Largemouth Bass, and Yellow Perch, but the large adults are only present in the marsh during the spawning season which is closed to fishing. The spring and fall season also brings several migrating salmon and trout to the marshes main inflowing river.

Rainbow trout
Jerry’s catch

In 2007, when there was low water level in Lake Ontario and a favourable wind, all the water was pushed out of Cootes Paradise and the remaining carp swam out into Hamilton Harbour. RBG staff removed the fish gates and herded out the last of the carp, and then replaced the gates. Since then the Paradise has been relatively carp free. In the absence of these large destructive bottom feeders there is a gradual return natural native plant species populations.

Now in 2012 Cootes Paradise is threatened once again by increasing numbers of Carp and Goby fish. Goby fish is a feral species that destroys our environment.

I have images of the Goby fish so if you catch one, “Dont throw it back in water, and especially donnot use as bait . Put the fish in the garbage to save our Great lakes …..please.The Goby grow too two and a half inches long, a very destructive, invasive species are  from  illegal Ballast water dumping by Ocean Craft . Remember the Zebra Mussels?

Goby Fish two inches long

and Thanking  you in advance

Doug Worrall

Rainbow trout

Event is Date below:

The Hamilton Harbour Fishing Derby takes place this Saturday, August 11th from 8am to 12pm.  Prizes to be awarded at 1:30pm – – – THIS IS A FREE EVENT FOR ALL AGES!

Company-lets go fishing

Pier 8

47 Discovery Drive

Hamilton, ON

Check in Stations:

While you are out fishing, take your camera, you may see some wonderful animals……………………

The Fishway-Black crowned night heron

Pier 8 – Scoops Ice Cream Hut
HWT Centre – North Side
Bayfront Park Boat Launch
Fishway on Waterfront Trail
LaSalle Park Boat Launch
Marine Police Basin

3 age categories:

Child 10 and under
Youth 11 to 17
Adult 18 and over

Fishing, Environment and
Water Safety Demonstrations


1000 Free Fishing Rods for Children 12 and under

Silent Auction Fundraiser
9:00am to 1:30pm
Pier 8 – Hamilton Waterfront Trust

Harbourfront park


Information: Hamilton Waterfront Trust, Wikipedia




Doug Worrall

Spencer Creek and Hamilton Harbour

Watershed map

Spencer Creek is the most Diverse Watershed of Cootes Paradise and Hamilton Harbour

Thursday October 4 2010

By Jacqueline

Spencer Creek is the most Diverse Watershed of Cootes Paradise and Hamilton Harbour.

The Spencer Creek Watershed (SCW) is the largest and most significant watershed of Cootes Paradise and Hamilton Harbour. Spencer Creek, the main trunk flows into the western arm of Webster’s Falls in Dundas. Spencer Creek at the point where it reaches the Town of Dundas, and just upstream of Cootes Paradise has a drainage basin of 29,000 hectares. (SCW) is the largest sub-watershed in the Cootes Paradise drainage basin. The watershed also comprises of 50% of the 49,000 hectares drainage basin for Hamilton Harbour.

Many substantial tributaries are located within the (SCW): Fletcher Creek, Flamborough Creek, Logie’s Creek [ Logie’s Creek which is also called East Spencer Creek and drains into the eastern head of Spencer Gorge forming Tews Falls] ], Westover Creek, and West Spencer Creek join above the Town of Dundas. Ancaster Creek, Borer’s Creek, Chedoke Creek, Spring Creek, Tiffany Creek, Sulphur Creek, Sydenham Creek and Westdale Creek join Spencer Creek within or downstream of the Town of Dundas. And, some of these creeks drain down into the Dundas Valley.

The creeks and tributaries in the (SCW) support a diverse natural system and provide pathway for water from the recharge areas in Puslinch, Ancaster and Beverly Swamp to the mouth of Cootes Paradise (HCA). The formation of mouth bars in Burlington and Hamilton after the recession of Lake Iroquois (now, Lake Ontario) aided in the formation of the drowned rivermouth wetland, Cootes Paradise Marsh. This area, albeit degraded from anthropogenic activities, Cootes Paradise has been the focus of numerous restoration activities to boost the biodiversity of the area.

Tiffany falls

The cold water indicator of fish present in Spencer Creek include: brook trout, rainbow darter and mottled sculpin. Other more oxygen sensitive species present include: northern pike, river chub, largemouth bass, common shiner, emerald shiner and longnose dace. The redside dace are limited to the tributaries to western Lake Ontario from Spencer Creek in the west. The redband trout are a common native species to Spencer Creek. The European brown trout once stocked in the upper watershed of Spencer Creek have not been found in recent years. Many of these species are present throughout Spencer Creek and its associated tributaries. Thirty-four (34) species of fish have been identified in the (SCW), making it by far the most diverse watershed of Hamilton Harbour.

Spencer Creek and Cootes Paradise are important spawning and nursery grounds for many fish that reside in Lake Ontario and Hamilton Harbour. The connection between the two areas allows adult fish to migrate from the Great Lakes into key spawning grounds in the creeks or marsh, and the young take advantage of the warm rich shallows of Cootes Paradise. Species, such as, northern pike utilize the creek and marsh flood plain environment for spawning and nursery purposes ,while white suckers, lay their eggs in Spencer Creek and other tributaries with their larva drifting down the marsh to grow. Currently, 65 species are recorded to use the Hamilton Harbour area for reproduction. But, due to land use pressures on the ecosystem over 20 of these species have been lost, so 45 species are left.

Water Quality is the key determinant of aquatic community life. Good water quality supports a diverse community of organisms that can occupy niche preferences created by varying flow conditions. In turn, diverse habitat have the ability to support a wide range of biota based on niche preferences. Many watershed activities affect water quality, channel form and riparian vegetation including: development, agriculture, dams and reservoirs. Barriers in the aquatic environment can limit the extent of aquatic community in areas where water quality is otherwise good. Barriers can be physical, but they can also be chemical or thermal. In the (SCW), the primarily barriers to fish movement are physical in nature. Maple Ridge News in 2,010 recently state: ” A key obstacle to fish spawning in Spencer Creek is soon to be removed. With fish allowed to get upstream, the Coho Salmon population will return.” Furthermore, water quality and aquatic habitat are important for pelagic and benthic invertebrates, and that constitutes the food source for many of these fish species. Maintaining the diverse benthic community established through Spencer Creek is considered critical to supporting/protecting the community of fish residing or utilizing this ecosystem.


Doug Worrall

Signets Four Months Old Hamilton Harbourfront Park

Signets Four Months Old Hamilton Harbourfront Park

Monday September 20th 2010

Two years after Spencer Creek spill  Biedermann Packaging fire

calling for her signets

Update on the Mute swan family located now at Harboufront park Hamilton. Arrived to find just the Female mute swan alone, blood on her neck and calling out to

her Signets, a sound I have not heard before.I have been following this family daily for last four months. Noticing the Male way out in the Harbour being on Guard. After 10 minutes

without seeing the four mute swans my heart felt this is not right. The signets stay with there Parents for up to three years old. They looked sick yesterday probably from bread people feed them.

It made no sense the signets were not there. My mind was fearing the worse.

Then my trail-mate, yelled, there they are, out of the corner of my eye I saw white and then the four signets came into my line of sight.

Estatically I shot over 100 pictures just so happy nothing terrible happened to them. It is new to me to find-out they go feed by themselves now, without

the protection of  Mom or Dad swans. The Female always is with the Signets so am wondering why she could not swim with them to feed. The blood

on her neck leaves my only to make an educated guess that a unleashed Dog probably attacked the family.I get so angry at the apathetic,  dog owners

who donnot leash there animals. While Hiking through Cootes paradise, A  dog approached me 1 mile into the hike into the woods.Then the owner came

after. Of course the  kingfisher I was ready to take a picture of,  flew -off.  No respect for “our” environment and small animals that dogs attack.

Apathy and ignorance reign almighty in today’s society. Most play by the rules, yet a large majority ruin our Natural environment. Money and

business play the biggest  part. What happened in Spencer Creek in 2007 when there was a chemical spill in the water from Biedermann Packaging fire

that led to contaminated douse water flowing through a storm water drain directly into the creek? Here is some information below that Jaqui and I

are investigating.


Key players in creek tragedy no-show at public forum Confusion remains two years after Spencer Creek spill

The empty table at the front of the room left those at last week’s public meeting on the toxic spill that wiped out Spencer Creek two years ago wondering what the main players in the tragedy really think about ongoing public concerns.

“Where are all these people?” Marty Zuliniak asked, motioning towards empty seats and unused microphones set up for representatives of Biedermann Packaging, Ministry of the Environment, Hamilton fire service, Royal Botanical Gardens and Hamilton Conservation Authority. No one showed up, despite being invited. The public meeting was also promoted in three Hamilton newspapers.

“Are they the cowards of the county? With all the publicity, how did we not get anybody here? Shame on them.”

The 16 residents who did attend spent a couple of hours discussing what they would have asked the main players in the July 26, 2007 Biedermann Packaging fire that led to contaminated douse water flowing through a storm water drain directly into the creek, while city staff took samples and the others watched.

In particular, they strongly questioned the response of Biedermann Packaging, Ontario’s Environment Ministry and Hamilton fire service during the fire, its immediate aftermath and in the 23 months since.

Mr. Zuliniak started the Sucker Sunday fishing derby in 1976, focusing on a fun event for kids. He’s found the Spencer Creek fish population has not returned since the toxic spill, and he’s concerned the damage may be worse than bureaucrats admit.

“It’s been a fantastic run until we had this disaster. This disaster was devastating. We went down to zero suckers,” he said.

Mr. Zuliniak organized the public meeting to get answers to several questions about the environmental incident and what’s been done since. He was particularly frustrated with the fire service’s managers.

“You pay these people,” Mr. Zuliniak said. “They know they went wrong and they won’t admit it.”

He thanked Maria Giulietti of Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath’s office for showing up and reading a statement from Ms. Horwath. Ms. Giulietti took notes during the meeting and promised to meet with Ms. Horwath then pass along the politician’s response. She was the only politician represented at the public meeting.

Memos from the Ministry of Environment and Hamilton Conservation Authority, in response to Mr. Zuliniak’s invitation, raised more questions than answers, and contradictions appear to show a lack of consultation between two groups that claim to be working together.

Bill Bardswick, director of the ministry’s Hamilton office, states in his memo the HCA “will lead the implementation” of a creek restoration plan. An email from HCA manager Steve Miazga stated, “We would note our role is one of monitoring.”

In the four-page MOE memo, Mr. Bardswick states three options were considered for remediating Spencer Creek, and the preferred option is “removing barriers and/or hardened channels in lower Spencer Creek.”

At Thursday’s public meeting, Luke Harding said: “They haven’t pointed out when they’re going to do it.”

He also questioned any claim by the Environment Ministry that the creek is back to normal if fish are not returning.

Kris Robinson, a Dundas resident and member of Environment Hamilton’s Biedermann Fire Working Group, wondered why option two wasn’t chosen. That option was to “prevent storm water from the industrial area where Biedermann is sited from entering the creek.” But, according to Mr. Bardswick’s memo, the MOE won’t pursue that because “it does not do anything to meet the objective of restoring the aquatic community.”

Patrick Rowan noted the MOE’s memo states ministry staff is apparently working with Biedermann on contingency plans.

“But what if it happens again tonight, what if it happens tomorrow?” Mr. Rowan said. “It’s great Biedermann is working on a plan, but in the meantime what do we do?”

He asked if pesticide manufacturing is an appropriate business to have in a community if the fire service has no plan for evacuation or emergency response, and both provincial and municipal governments have passed legislation banning certain pesticides and limiting their sale and use.

Mr. Rowan and others at the public meeting wondered why the ministry and the fire service refuse to release information about the chemicals and pesticides stored at Biedermann Packaging. And several people asked why the ministry is taking so long to release its report and conclusions with any possible charges. The ministry’s self imposed two-year deadline passes in one month.

This was written by

By Craig Campbell, News Staff Waterloo Cronicle

More to come on  The Spencer Creek Issue with Observations, Interviews and Photos  of  “The Beast”  This will be on ongoing investigation


Doug Worrall