The Credit River Watershed – Key Facts
Credit Valley Conservation has a mandate to protect, restore and manage the natural resources of the Credit River and its adjacent lands, known as the Credit River Watershed.
This mandate includes:
- All the lands that drain into the Credit River
- Smaller watersheds in the area that drain directly into Lake Ontario (e.g., Cooksville Creek, Sheridan Creek)
- A section of the Lake Ontario shoreline
Watershed lands include parts of the Niagara Escarpment, Oak Ridges Moraine and Greenbelt.
Did You Know?
- The Credit River is almost 90 km long
- Credit River headwaters are located in headwaters in Orangeville, Erin and Mono
- The Credit River drains into Lake Ontario in Mississauga (Port Credit)
- The Credit River flows through nine municipalities
- Lands surrounding the Credit River are biodiverse
What is a Watershed?
The watershed of a river includes the entire area of land that drains, or ‘sheds’, its rain or snow melt into that river. The boundary of a watershed is based on the elevation and natural contours of a landscape.
The area surrounding a smaller river or creek which contributes to a larger river system is called a subwatershed. The West Credit River is a good local example of a subwatershed – this river contributes water to the Credit River.
Land Cover in the Credit River Watershed
We can group land cover in the Credit River Watershed into three types, urban, natural, and agriculture and open space.
The land cover in Credit River Watershed is broadly made up of about 35 per cent natural area, 31 per cent urban and 34 per cent agriculture and open space.
Natural areas include forests, wetlands and meadows and natural areas along rivers, streams and lakes, including:
- Woodlands: 23 per cent
- Wetlands: 7 per cent
Urban areas include our communities where we have homes, businesses, schools, roads and infrastructure.
Agriculture and open space inlude the fields that grow crops and areas to raise livestock, as well as open spaces such as parks, sports fields and golf courses.
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Watershed Science News
A drop of water that lands anywhere inside the boundary of the Credit River Watershed will eventually end up in the Credit River, which flows south into Lake Ontario.