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Yes, users may swim in the lake. However, the Province is currently advising that COVID-19 transmission through water is currently unknown, and people entering the water do so at their own risk.
Buoys are placed near the parks during the summer (Anniversary and John Peake Park) that mark shoreline areas that can be used for swimming.
Please be advised that you swim at your own risk. There are no lifeguards on duty.
Last Updated: July 21, 2020
Yes. The City is testing water quality once a week through the summer months. We are using the same laboratory service as the Western Irrigation District (WID), whom maintains the water that fills Chestermere Lake from the Bow River.
The City cannot prohibit non-residents from using the beach as Alberta does not allow discrimination between residents and non-residents being permitted in public places. However, by passing Bylaw 026-20 on Tuesday, July 28, the City can now recover some of the costs associated with the activities at the beach by charging a fee for non-residents. This is done under the authority of the Municipal Government Act and the City has the right to regulate activities on Chestermere Lake under the agreement with the Western Irrigation District.
Last Updated July 29, 2020
Yes, beaches were reopened on June 19.
Lakeside parks will have new maximum capacity limits to ensure that visitors can effectively distance from each other.
The maximum limit at Anniversary Park will be 615 people (115 on the beach), the maximum limit at Cove Beach will be 205 (39 on the beach) and the maximum at Sunset Park will be 483. If overcrowding continues to be a problem, the City may further limit or close beaches.
If visitors come to the park and it is at capacity, they will need to wait or come back later. There will not be a time limit on how long visitors can stay at the park once admitted.
Details and a beach visitor checklist can be found at www.chestermere.ca/beaches
Last Updated July 21, 2020.
Yes, but there are some regulations about where you can fish, for example, fishing is not permitted on the City’s floating docks, but you can fish from private docks and other shorelines. You also need a fishing licence. Remember to only share equipment with those who live in your household and maintain a 2 metre physical distance from anyone who does not live with you.
Last Updated July 21, 2020
Yes. More details about the boat launch are available at www.chestermere.ca/boats.
We are hoping to get more guidelines from the Province on that, but don’t have any information yet. However, we do recognize that it would be challenging to be socially distant with people on a boat so we take that into consideration as we work on our local regulations. Remember to only share equipment with those who live in your household and maintain a 2 metre physical distance from anyone who does not live with you.
Last updated: June 17, 2020
Yes.Last Updated June 17, 2020
Water quality is tested once a week.
The dead fish are likely the result of:
It is believed that the likely cause is hooking mortality, especially where the gills looked damaged. One theory is that with COVID, there are many new fishermen who are not handling fish very well (never put your fingers into a pikes gills to hold them up – the gills are very fragile).
Also, a few years ago the Province eliminated the requirement to use barbless hooks. The combination of lots of people fishing, many new fishers who don’t know how to properly release live fish (e.g. pike), and barbed hooks which are difficult to remove probably = high hooking mortality rate.
As well, the numbers of dead fish reported have been in the low double digits. If it were in the range of 100-200 fish being found at a time – further investigations will be done with Alberta Fish and Wildlife.
Last Updated: June 17, 2020
The green clumpy algae are a filamentous green algae called Sprirogyra – named for its very obvious spiral shaped chloroplasts (the organs that contain the oxygen producing chlorophyll).
The algae that has been reported is likely due to the low flow of water.
There are many different types of algaes based on different conditions in our lake. Summer kills due to low oxygen can also occur in lakes in late summer, in stagnant eutrophic (nutrient enriched) lakes that get warm (warm water holds less oxygen) where there are large algal blooms that crash and oxygen is consumed from the decomposing algae. This would be very unlikely in Chestermere, given the lake has a pretty rapid turnover of water and is well mixed from the wind. WID also reports higher than usual oxygen levels for this time of year.
These algae are relatively benign – and will probably persist for a few weeks while conditions are right for them; then they will decline and something else will grow in their place.
In general, phosphate levels have been increasing in Chestermere over the past decade or so, and it is very likely we will see annual algal blooms of this sort, and often different species of algae are involved depending on the conditions at the time.