Musk Lake Conservation Reserve Management Statement
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Statement of Conservation Interest
OMNR, Kenora District
Prepared by: Catherine Reaburn, OLL Intern, Kenora District.
Prepared for: Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Kenora District
Date: February, 2002
We are pleased to approve this Statement of Conservation Interest for the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve.
This Statement of Conservation Interest provides guidance for the management of the conservation reserve and the basis for the ongoing monitoring activities. More detailed direction at this time is not anticipated. Should significant facility development be considered or complex issues arise requiring additional studies, more defined management direction, or special protection measures, a more detailed Conservation Reserve Management Plan will be prepared with full public consultation.
The public was widely consulted during the original regulation process and further consultation is not required at this time.
The conservation reserve will be managed under the jurisdiction of the Kenora West Area Supervisor, Kenora District, Ministry of Natural Resources.
Fred S. Hall
Date: June 24, 2003
Date: June 27, 2003
1.0 Background information
During the Lands for Life process, areas representative of Ontario's diverse ecosystems and biological/geological features were identified and recommended for regulation as parks and conservation reserves under the Provincial Parks Act and the Public Lands Act, respectively (OMNR, 1999). Ontario's Living Legacy expanded the percentage of Ontario's protected areas to encompass twelve percent of the province's land and water base. Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is one of the representative areas selected for protection in site region/district 4S-1, and was regulated June 7, 2003 (Reg. 208/03). The area was selected as a candidate under Ontario's Living Legacy due to the fact that it is one of the few locations in this site district to contain clay. The reserve also includes mixed forest types on weakly broken bedrock and lacustrine deposits, and scenic portions of the Winnipeg River system (OMNR, 1999).
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is located approximately 61 kilometres northwest of the City of Kenora and is situated on the Ontario/Manitoba border. The reserve incorporates portions of the Winnipeg River system, Bass Lake, and Boundary Island. The reserve also includes the large portion of land that is bordered by Musk Lake in the south, Eaglenest Lake in the north, and Tetu Lake in the east. The total area to be regulated is approximately 4,855 hectares (OMNR, 2001a).
The intent of this Statement of Conservation Interest is to identify the natural heritage values of Musk Lake Conservation Reserve, the activities occurring in the area and, through a set of management guidelines, outline the activities that will be permitted and prohibited.
For more information regarding the basis of this Statement, please refer to the "Conservation Reserve Policy and Procedure PL3.03.05", specifically, pages 2-6 and 14-22 of the procedure (OMNR, 1997a).
|Name||Musk Lake Conservation Reserve (C2382)|
|Site Region/Site District||4S-1|
|OMNR Administrative Region/District/Area||Northwest/Kenora/Kenora West|
|Total Area (ha)||4,855 ha|
|Regulation Date||Anticipated in 2003|
|First Nations with Interest in Area||Wabaseemoong First Nation|
|Latitude/Longitude||50º 10' N / 95º 7' W|
|Basemap||34555, 35555, 34556, 35556|
|FRI Stand Numbers (located partially and fully within Musk Lake Conservation Reserve)||44, 240, 336, 735, 331, 833, 529, 629, 829, 528, 1529, 126, 1226, 23, 421, 722, 823, 1419, 716, 918, 1714, 312, 1811, 109, 608, 505, 1407, 2006, 1104, 203, 201, 501, 400, 1001, 1801, 2100, 8654, 8048, 9047, 9744, 9742, 9638, 9139, 7839, 7834, 9437, 8032, 8739, 7829, 8227, 8124, 9030, 9025, 8620, 8920, 9822, 9921, 9925, 8620, 8920, 8918, 6517, 6918, 6710, 6606, 7610, 7507, 6304, 7003, 7204, 6202, 6501, 7102, 7802, 7301, 7904, 7801, 8307, 9108, 9006, 9001, 9101, 9601, 9909, 9704, 9904, 9902, 6298, 6799, 7699, 7898, 7999, 8299, 8999, 9298, 9899, 9789,6698, 6997, 7396, 7197, 7499, 7597, 7696, 6595, 6293, 6792, 6490, 6186, 6282, 7293, 8696, 8690, 7585, 8585, 8684, 8083, 7782, 7081, 8280, 7081, 6774, 6880, 6978, 7581, 8479, 8679, 7778, 7376, 6373, 7174, 8274, 8572, 7871, 7670, 8771, 6309, 7074, 8367, 7168, 6163, 7862, 6561, 7258, 7456, 6453, 6950, 6747, 6243, 6741, 6140, 6037, 7328, 7644, 7646, 7348, 7841, 7938, 7547, 7950, 8354, 8451, 8649, 8247, 8145, 8440, 8641, 8145, 8247, 8645, 8747, 8549, 8756, 8951, 8844, 8842, 8548, 8951, 8945, 9045, 9147, 9348, 9252, 1551, 9853, 9654, 9957, 9958, 9860, 9258, 8761, 8961, 9962, 9965, 9258, 8762, 8863, 8696, 8996, 8992, 9193, 9592, 9992, 9991, 8690, 8990, 9191, 9791, 9388, 8986, 8585, 8684, 9184, 9784, 9585, 8474, 8679, 9176, 9480, 9982, 9970, 9977, 9670, 9996, 8724, 8572, 9572, 9873, 8771, 9271, 9969, 8966, 8863, 8762, 9258, 9965, 9962, 8761, 8961, 9860, 9958, 8957, 9654, 8354, 8756, 9252, 9853, 9954, 9952, 8451, 8951, 9551, 8549, 8247, 8645, 8647, 8548, 9147, 9348, 9945, 8945, 8844, 8440, 8641, 99, 597, 1297, 396, 897, 2096, 1894, 1393, 1095, 793, 391, 590, 1191, 488, 987, 1885, 2585, 383, 2181, 2782, 77, 278, 379, 678, 780, 1381, 2781, 2580, 2579, 1979, 175, 575, 1175, 573, 2074, 1977, 1572, 1470, 771, 470, 668, 1068, 567, 265, 165, 865, 162, 464, 864, 161, 459, 60, 159, 259, 258, 158, 55|
|General Location Description||This site is located approximately 61 kilometres northwest of the City of Kenora.|
|Access||The reserve is accessible by water and by air.|
1.1 Representation targets
This section provides a summary of the earth/life science values, cultural resources, and the recreational opportunities available or possible within Musk Lake Conservation Reserve.
|Life Science Representation||Jack pine and black spruce forests on shallow, dry, sandy or coarse loamy soils are extensive. Green alder, bush honeysuckle, and/or low sweet blueberry are the dominant shrubs (Foster & Harris, 2002).|
|Earth Science Representation||Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is wholly within the Winnipeg River Geological Subprovince. The entire reserve is underlain by a single phase of granitic rock of the Tetu Lake batholith. The rock is a deep pink to red, massive, medium to coarsely crystalline biotite granite (Blackburn, 2002).|
|Cultural Resource Representation||Nothing known at this time.|
|Recreational Opportunities||Fishing, camping, and hunting are the main recreational activities.|
1.2 Survey information
This section provides an overview of the inventories that were completed, their level of detail, and any further inventories that are necessary.
|Life Science||Checklist and summary report completed by Northern Bioscience. Survey conducted by helicopter on June 14th, 2001.||Not required.|
|Earth Science||Checklist and summary report completed by Charles Blackburn. Survey conducted by helicopter on June 14th, 2001.||Not required.|
|Cultural||Not required||Not required.|
|Recreational||Recreational assessment, Kenora staff; 2001.||Not required.|
|Other||Not required||Not required.|
2.0 Values to be protected
This section provides a description of the key natural heritage values on the site, their condition relative to past resource use and management activities, as well as their sensitivity to future land use and management activities.
2.1 Life sciences
Mixed forest types on weakly broken bedrock, as well as scenic shorelines and bald eagle nests were expected to be found in the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve (OMNR, 1999). The life science surveys identified the following life science values.
Figure 1: Eagle nest - northeast boundary of reserve
Mixedwood and deciduous forests are dominant within the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve. Jack pine and black spruce forests are extensive, and trembling aspen may also be present. Green alder, bush honeysuckle, and/or low sweet blueberry are the dominant shrubs. The understory layer is typically species-poor, and often limited to bunchberry, Canada mayflower, feathermosses and reindeer lichen. These communities include both conifer, mixed, and sparse forests depending on the degree of canopy closure and hardwood component. Black spruce swamps in the reserve add another ecosite type that was not previously identified in the gap analysis (Foster et al, 2002).
Figure 2: Black spruce swamp
The Winnipeg River system has strong ecological linkages with the conservation reserve, providing habitat and forage for riparian mammals and fish-eating birds such as osprey and bald eagles (Foster et al, 2002).
2.2 Earth sciences
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve was selected as a candidate for protection under Ontario's Living Legacy because it is one of the few locations within this site district to contain clay and also includes weakly broken bedrock and lacustrine deposits (OMNR, 1999).
Approximately half of the site was found to be bedrock dominated while much of the remainder of the reserve is covered with glaciolacustrine clays, silts, and some sands. More moderately broken bedrock was found to exist than previously thought, especially on Boundary Island and in the northwestern and southwestern corners of the reserve. There are also a few locations of very strongly broken bedrock (Foster et al, 2002).
A large accumulation of boulders was observed from the air close to the western edge of the reserve, near the Manitoba border. This could be either the remnant of a former boulder beach or a recessional moraine deposit. Although the reserve encompasses a small portion of the very large Tetu Lake batholith, it is well exposed in extensive rugged outcrops, and therefore representative of the dominant phase of this batholith. For these reasons it is of provincial significance, representing a large potash-rich body of igneous, intrusive rock in the Superior province, comparable to but smaller than the Lount Lake batholith (Blackburn, 2002).
Figure 3: Exposed bedrock shore along the eastern boundary
Figure 4: Exposed bedrock along the eastern boundary
There are no tourist establishments immediately within the conservation reserve, however, there are several tourist establishments situated nearby the reserve on Musk Lake, Eaglenest Lake, Tetu Lake, and the Winnipeg River. There are two tourist establishments located within 2.5 kilometres of the reserve on Tetu Lake (Foster et al, 2002). True North Outposts and Cabins operate a Bear Management Area.
Figure 5: True North Outposts and Cabins – Musk Lake
2.4 Aboriginal values
There is some anecdotal evidence of an aboriginal value in Musk Lake. However, at this time, there are no known aboriginal values in any other area within the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve (OMNR, 1995).
2.5 Cultural/historical values
At this time there are no confirmed cultural or historical values within the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve (OMNR, 1995).
2.6 Recreational values
Fishing, hunting, and camping are the most popular recreational activities within the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve. There are several water routes through Tetu Lake, Eaglenest Lake, and the Winnipeg River which all border the reserve and provide access to it. Fishing opportunities exist for walleye, northern pike, smallmouth bass, and yellow perch (True North Outposts and Cabins website, 2001). There are hunting opportunities for moose, deer, black bear, small game, and various waterfowl.
The primary game fish within the lakes and rivers adjacent to and within the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve are walleye, northern pike, smallmouth bass, and yellow perch (True North Outposts and Cabins website, 2001). Smallmouth bass is present in Bass Lake however, it is an introduced, non-native species (Foster et al, 2002).
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is part of Wildlife Management Unit # 6 and includes moose, deer, and black bear, as well as other small game animals and a variety of waterfowl. The reserve is part of a Bear Management Area issued to True North Outposts and Cabins.
The mineral potential within the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is undetermined at this time. No mineral exploration or extraction may occur in the conservation reserve proposed through Ontario's Living Legacy Land Use Strategy. (OMNR, 1997a).
There is no aggregate development within the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve (Moorley, 2002).
2.10 Forest values
The forest values within the reserve boundaries are to be protected from any unnatural alteration (OMNR, 1999; 1997a). Successional changes associated with each forest type occurring in the area (depending on each stand's stage of maturity, specific vegetative species composition, and soil type) are anticipated to take place as outlined in the following statements. Please note that for the purpose of this document, the successional time frame is depicted as 100 years.
The area within and around the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve has been affected by past disturbances including fire, spruce budworm, and tent caterpillar invasion. In 1961, approximately 460 hectares of Musk Lake Conservation Reserve was burnt during a large forest fire. Most of the damage was in the northern half of the reserve. The low-lying areas of forest, especially the deciduous and mixed forests on lacustrine deposits appear to have been less affected by the fire (Foster et al, 2002).
Spruce budworm outbreaks have occurred repeatedly throughout the reserve since the late 1980's. Balsam fir and white spruce defoliation and mortality has occurred, particularly in conifer and mixed forests on lacustrine deposits. Standing dead balsam fir was observed sporadically by the earth and life science contractors. Many of these trees are susceptible to windthrow, which was also observed occasionally during field reconnaissance in 2001(Foster et al, 2002).
In both the year 2000 and 2001, the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve experienced extensive damage due to forest tent caterpillar outbreaks. Nearly all trembling aspen and blueberry were heavily defoliated, as were some alder. As a result of the increased light levels on the forest floor, there was a strong profusion of shrubs and herbaceous species in heavily affected aspen stands (Foster et al, 2002).
Jack pine and black spruce forests on shallow, dry, sandy or coarse loamy soils are extensive within the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve (Foster et al, 2002). The natural succession of these sites is towards black spruce and total canopy cover declines through time. Long-term succession (>100 years) is towards a more open canopy black spruce forest (OMNR, 1997b).
A large proportion of the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is also dominated by trembling aspen and white birch in the canopy. Total tree cover usually remains high during much of these stands existence. The stand age in the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve varies between 10 and 90 years old. The majority of these sites usually occur in the 40 to 100 year old range.
In the absence of the spruce budworm, the overall successional trajectory for these stands is toward a more open, multi-tiered and uneven-aged canopy of mixed species composition. The hardwood component increases up to age 60 and then begins to decline as the intolerant hardwoods begin to "fall out" of the canopy. The hardwood component will then begin to be slowly replaced by coniferous species, particularly, white spruce and balsam fir. Residual aspen stems from the original stand may persist for 200 years or more on moist sites (OMNR, 1997b).
The Conservation Reserve is part of one registered trapline.
A large amount of wildlife may be found within the reserve including moose, white-tail deer, black bear, waterfowl, and a variety of small game animals. The reserve also includes several bald eagle nesting sites.
2.13 Commercial fishing
The Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is part of one registered baitfish area.
3.0 Management guidelines
3.1 Land Tenure
The Musk Lake Conservation Reserve consists entirely of Crown land. New leases or LUPs for private uses will not be considered. No disposition of land by sale will be permitted. Disposition of land, for approved commercial activities, through Crown Lease or Land Use Permit (LUP) may be permitted within the conservation reserve. Approval is determine through a more detailed management planning process and based on whether the proposed facility and uses meets the "Test of Compatibility" (OMNR, 1997a). Subject to a test of compatibility, new commercial tenure applications may be considered where they are intended to support non-permanent and temporary facilities ( e.g. a seasonal Restricted LUP to support tent sites). Applications for tenure to support activities with long term structural components will not be considered.
3.2 Existing and proposed development
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is in relatively undisturbed condition since there is no existing or proposed development within the reserve and no road access. However, True North Cabins and Outposts operate one tourist outpost south of the reserve boundary on a peninsula within Musk Lake. There are two tourist establishments within 2.5 kilometres of the reserve on Tetu Lake as well as several others over the Manitoba border on Eaglenest Lake (Foster et al, 2002). New tourist facilities with permanent structures, (camps, lodges, outposts, etc.), will not be permitted. Low impact, temporary facilities can be considered only if a more detailed management plan approves them. Approval of any proposed facilities and associated uses depends on the meeting the "Test of Compatibility".
3.3 Recreational activities
There is a portage within the reserve which links Musk Lake with Bass Lake, the only lake wholly included within the reserve. Bass Lake offers angling opportunities for smallmouth bass. This portage is well maintained by True North Outposts and Cabins and is approximately two kilometres in length. There are fishing opportunities adjacent to Musk Lake Conservation Reserve for walleye, northern pike, yellow perch, and smallmouth bass.
Figure 6: Portage between Musk Lake and Bass Lake
Hunting opportunities for black bear, moose, deer, and various waterfowl exist within the reserve.
3.4 Commercial activities
Trapping will continue to be permitted within the reserve boundary as the area forms part of one registered trapline (OMNR, 1999). Black bear hunting will also continue to be permitted since the reserve is part of one Bear Management Area (BMA). The reserve is also part of a registered baitfish operation. No changes to trapline, BMA and baitfish areas are required at this time and are permitted to continue provided that they do not impact the reserve's identified and protected natural heritage values. No further commercial activities will be permitted in the area, including road construction and removal of aggregates (OMNR, 1999; 1997a). The development of utility corridors within the Conservation Reserve are to be strongly discouraged through planning (OMNR, 1999).
Currently the lake supports no commercial fishing. Due to the small size of the lake commercial fishing license applications will not be entertained.
Forest harvesting is not permitted in the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve, however there are plans to harvest sections of the forest southeast of the Conservation Reserve within the next five years. A proposed secondary road corridor, which does not pass through the Conservation Reserve, has been allocated to Weyerhaeuser Company Limited in order to access this area. Harvesting operations will begin approximately six kilometres southeast of Musk Lake. (OMNR, 2001b).
The area will be permanently removed from the operable Kenora Forest Land Base and the area has been withdrawn from all mining exploration and extraction activities by the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines (MNDM) at the MNR's request.
3.5 Aboriginal interests
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is located within a primary interest area of the Wabaseemoong First Nation. Preliminary evidence of an aboriginal value in Musk Lake is known at this time and no values were identified during First Nation consultation. However, nothing in this Statement of Conservation Interest will affect existing or future aboriginal or treaty rights. One community trapline within the reserve is allotted to the Wabaseemoong First Nation.
3.6 Natural resources stewardship
3.6.1 Vegetation management
The MNR recognizes fire as an essential process fundamental to the ecological integrity of conservation reserves. In accordance with existing Conservation Reserve Policy and the Forest Fire Management Strategy for Ontario, forest fire protection will be carried out as on surrounding lands.
Whenever feasible, the MNR fire program will endeavour to use "light on the land" techniques, which do not unduly disturb the landscape, in this Conservation Reserve. Examples of light on the land techniques may include limiting the use of heavy equipment or limiting the number of trees felled during fire response efforts.
Opportunities for prescribed burning to achieve ecological or resource management objectives may be considered. These management objectives will be developed with public consultation prior to any prescribed burning, and reflected in the document that provides management direction for this conservation reserve. Plans for any prescribed burning will be developed in accordance with the MNR Prescribed Burn Planning Manual, and the Class Environmental Assessment for Provincial Parks and Conservation Reserves (approval pending).
Fuelwood permits will not be issued within the area encompassed by the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve. However, usage of the areas wood resource for shorelunches and campfires will be permitted provided that there is no resulting damage or alteration of the forest and its understory (OMNR, 1997a).
Additional fieldwork could be conducted to survey for additional plant species, particularly prairie elements and other rare species. A boat survey along the Winnipeg River on the eastern boundary of the reserve and associated cliffs should be a high priority (Foster et al, 2002).
3.6.2 Fish and wildlife management
No management action is required other than the implementation of existing Wildlife Management Unit #6 regulations, and Division #22 sport fishing regulations and management activities.
The landforms represented within Musk Lake Conservation Reserve will not be altered through any landform modification activities, including filling and extraction of aggregates, peat, soils, and similar materials (OMNR, 1997a).
3.7 Cultural resources stewardship
Based on existing information, there are no requirements at this time.
3.8 Client services
Information regarding this conservation reserve will be made available so as to ensure that all resource users (particularly forestry and mining companies) are aware of its location, recognized values, and permitted uses. Potential users include tourists, local anglers/hunters, recreationalists (ie. canoeists, hikers, snowmobilers), and the general public, all of who may utilize the areas wood resource for camping, shorelunches, firewood, and personal use.
Non-destructive research relating to cultural and historical values within the reserve would be beneficial so as to add further potential values to the reserve, as well as to ensure their protection.
There are no marketing requirements at this time.
These management guidelines will be implemented immediately by MNR, Kenora District. Any MNR Resource Management Plans or Land Use Plans which include this area will be amended accordingly. Any affected clients will be immediately informed of the changes, should any arise. Administrative responsibility for the conservation reserve rests with the Kenora West Area Supervisor. Implementation will primarily involve monitoring activities to ensure adherence to the management guidelines.
5.0 Review and revisions
5.1 Review and revisions
Any amendments to this Statement of Conservation Interest may require to be posted on the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) Registry prior to their approval. Consultation efforts may also be required, as determined by the Area Supervisor, as well as the approval of the District Manager and the Regional Director.
5.2 Public consultation
5.2.1 Results of past consultation
Contact regarding the regulation of Musk Lake Conservation Reserve was made with timber companies, local communities, and the general public in June, 2001. Consultation efforts involved the direct mailing of a District information package to local interest groups (such as the Local Citizens Committee), as well as to all those with patent land, boat caches, bear management areas, trapline areas, baitfishing areas, and Sustainable Forest Licenses within and/or adjacent to the reserve's proposed boundaries. Newspaper advertisements were issued in the Kenora Enterprise and the Kenora Daily Miner and News in mid-June, 2001. Only one response which was specifically related to the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve was received and concerned the direction that would be taken regarding the water power generation plants adjacent to this reserve.
First Nation consultation associated with the Musk Lake Conservation Reserve has been completed. The Grand Council Treaty #3 office hired an individual that assisted both the MNR and the area First Nations in completing these consultations. First Nations made no comments regarding this Conservation Reserve.
5.2.2 Present and future consultation
More widespread consultation is not deemed necessary at this time due to the extensive consultation which took place in June, 2001 (refer to section 5.2.1).
Anderson, Dave. 2002. Area Forester. Personal Correspondence. OMNR, Kenora District.
Blackburn, Charles. 2002. Detailed Information for Site C2382 – Musk Lake.
Dawe , Mike. 2001. Senior Forest Specialist. Personal Correspondence. OMNR, Kenora District.
Foster, Robert & Harris, Allan. 2002. Natural Heritage Area – Life Science Checksheet.
Moorley, Rob. 2002. Resource Management Technician. Personal Correspondence. OMNR, Kenora District.
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 2001a. Ontario's Living Legacy Fact Sheet - Musk Lake Conservation Reserve (C2382).
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 2001b. Kenora Forest Management Plan.
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 2000. Kenora District-Kenora & Whiskeyjack Forests Wildfire/Blowdown History Map (200 + Ha).
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 1999. Ontario's Living Legacy Land Use Strategy.
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 1997a. Conservation Reserves Policy and Procedure. PL 3.03.05.
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 1997b. Silvicultural Guide to Managing for Black Spruce, Jack Pine and Aspen on Boreal Forest Ecosites in Ontario. Book II: Ecological and Management Interpretation for Northwest Ecosites. Version 1.1 September, 1997.
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 1995. Kenora District Archaeological Sites – Map 52L/3.
True North Outposts and Cabins - website. 2001. www.tno.on.ca/
Appendix A: map of OLL sites within the Kenora District - 2001/2002
Appendix B: map of values in Musk Lake Conservation Reserve
Appendix C: Life Science Checksheet
C2382 Musk Lake
Natural Heritage Area - Life Science Checksheet
|Name||C2382 Musk Lake|
|UTM Ref.||Zone 15|
|Latitude||50° 10‘ N|
|Long.||95° 7‘ W|
|Minimum Altitude||300 m|
|Maximum Altitude||370 m|
|Locality||Approx. 60 km NW of Kenora|
|Ecoregion and Ecodistrict||5S-1 (old); 4S-1(new)|
|Landform Unit||See Table 3|
|95-5004 30-181, 95-5004 30-182|
95-5005 30-12 to 95-5005 30-16
95-5006 30-104, 95-5005 30-104
95-5007 30-151 to 95-5007 30-154
95-A-5008 40-118, 95-A-5008 40-119
Physical and biological features
The Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is located on the Ontario/Manitoba border along the Winnipeg River system. Musk Lake forms part of its southern boundary, and the reserve is bounded by Eaglenest Lake to the north and Tetu Lake in the east. In addition to 4163 ha of mainland, the reserve also includes Boundary Island (692 ha) on Eaglenest Lake. Bass Lake (64 ha) is found in the southern end of the park. There are also a few small (<5 ha) waterbodies and numerous small stream systems. The reserve includes 69 km of shoreline along the Winnipeg River system.
Approximately half of the reserve is bedrock-dominated. Jack pine and black spruce forests on shallow, dry, sandy or coarse loamy soils (ES12) are extensive and typically include V29 and V20. Trembling aspen may be present as well (V18 ). Green alder, bush honeysuckle, and/or low sweet blueberry are the dominant shrubs. The understory layer is typically species-poor, and often limited to bunchberry, Canada mayflower, feathermosses ( e.g. Schreber's moss) and reindeer lichen (Cladina). These communities include both conifer, mixed, and sparse forests depending on the degree of canopy closure and hardwood component.
Rock barrens (ES7) are extensive where there is little or no soil. These sites typically have scattered jack pine and pin cherry, with sand cherry, bearberry, spreading dogbane, three-toothed cinquefoil, and wood lily in the understory. Bedrock, Cladina lichen, and patches of feathermoss comprise the ground cover. Some open communities on bedrock had a strong prairie influence with typical western species such as tall cinquefoil, northern bedstraw, Venus'-pride and toadflax. Smooth sumac and early saxifrage are also present at some locations, indicating a nutrient-rich substrate and warmer than average microclimate.
Much of the remainder of the reserve is covered with glaciolacustrine clays, silts, and some sands. These deposits are not limited to low-lying areas, but are also found on hilltops, reflecting the high-elevation depositional environment of the glacial Lake Agassiz. Mixedwoods and deciduous forest predominate. Some of these stands are of recent fire-origin (1960s) whereas others are mature to over-mature and often have a dense understory of balsam fir and moose maple where blowdown creates a gap in the overstory. Herb species such as black snakeroot, rose twisted-stalk, and sweet coltsfoot indicate increased moisture and nutrient availability on these fresh to moist, fine-textured soils.
Alder thick swamps (ES44) and poor and intermediate black spruce swamps (ES35, ES36) are on organic deposits occupying low-lying areas along tributary streams, in particular south of Big Northern Bay. There is a 12-ha semi-treed (ES40) to open fen community on a basin organic deposit overlying bedrock on Boundary Island, which represents the open wetland: weakly broken bedrock LV-type.
Hardwood swamps are limited to a very well developed black ash stand on organic deposits along a stream and meadow marsh system in the northeast corner of the park.
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is one of the few areas in 4S-1 with glacioulacustrine clay deposits and provides critical representation for deciduous forests on this landform. Although not required for representation in this site district because the are included in other protected areas, the reserve nonetheless has large areas of representative conifer mixed, deciduous mixed, sparse forest, and vegetated bedrock on lacustrine deposits. The conservation reserve also provides excellent representation of a range of vegetation types on bedrock, including 10 LV-types on bedrock with at least 50 ha of areas.
Field reconnaissance revealed some inaccuracies in classification of moderately and weakly broken terrain. Approximately 88% of the bedrock in the reserve is classed as weakly broken, with the remainder moderately broken. Field reconnaissance suggests that much more moderately broken bedrock than indicated, particular on Boundary Island and in the northwestern and southwestern corners of the reserve. The area classed as moderately broken near Big Northern Bay is actually weakly broken. There are also a few locations of very strongly broken bedrock, as indicated by cliff ecosites (ES4) along the eastern shoreline.
Only 263 ha of burn LV-type was documented in the OLL gap analysis compared to 483 ha of old burn on Landsat28. Fire history maps show a much greater area of burn, but were done at a much coarser scale and do not reflect unburned areas within the fire. There is a greater representation of burn on weakly to moderately broken bedrock than was than indicated by the gap analysis. There is likely greater than 8 ha of moderately broken bedrock.
Black spruce swamps in the reserve at least one additional LV-type (conifer forest or treed wetland: organic deposits) in the reserve that was not identified in the gap analysis.
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve is in relatively undisturbed condition since there is no development within the reserve and no road access. The Winnipeg River system provides water access to the reserve from Tetu Lake to the east, and from Manitoba via Eaglenest Lake on the northern boundary of the reserve.
There is a commercial outpost camp and two boat caches on Musk Lake, which is accessible by air only. A well-established portage from Musk Lake provides access to the smallmouth bass and northern pike fisheries of Bass Lake. There is a commercial boat cache on Bass Lake. Two tourism establishments are located within 2.5 km of the reserve on Tetu Lake. In addition to fishing opportunities in and adjacent to the reserve, hunting for black bear, moose, whitetaail deer, and small game also occurs.
A small landing has been cleared on the northern shoreline of the reserve near Boundary Falls.
Smallmouth bass was introduced into Bass Lake, and is non-native to the area.
Musk Lake has a moderate to good diversity of landform-vegetation types and species. Although there are only two main landform types (lacustrine and bedrock), there is a good cross-section of conifer, deciduous and mixed forest. Non-forested communities range from wetlands to xeric bedrock cliffs. Prairie species are found in warmer than average microclimates, and boreal species near the southern limit of their range ( e.g. rock cranberry, rusty cotton-grass) are found in colder peatlands. Although not part of the conservation reserve, the adjacent wetland and aquatic habitats of Musk Lake and the Winnipeg River system contribute to the diversity of habitats.
Fire is the dominant disturbance type in the conservation reserve and 4S-1. Approximately 460 ha of the reserve burned during the mid 1960s. Much of this was in the northern half, with patches of burn on jack pine Ecosite 12 and rock barren Ecosite7 throughout the reserve. Low-lying forests, particularly deciduous and mixed forests on lacustrine deposits appear to have been less affected by fire. Some black spruce swamps skipped by the fire are at least 150 years of age.
Spruce budworm outbreaks have occurred repeatedly throughout the reserve since the late 1980s. Balsam fir and white spruce defoliation and mortality has occurred, particularly in conifer and mixed forests on lacustrine deposits. Standing dead balsam fir were observed sporadically during fieldwork. Many of these trees are susceptible to windthrow, which was observed occasionally during field reconnaissance as well.
There was extensive forest tent caterpillar outbreak in 2000 and 2001 in the reserve. Nearly all trembling aspen and blueberry were heavily defoliated, as were some alder. As a result of the increased light levels on the forest floor, there was a profusion of shrubs and herbaceous species in heavily affected aspen stands.
The Winnipeg River system has strong ecological linkages with the conservation reserve, providing habitat and forage for riparian mammals and fish-eating birds such as osprey and bald eagles. The moderating climate and alluvial soils along the river also allow the development of plant communities not found elsewhere in the reserve e.g., bur oak stands.
There is considerable beaver activity in the valley bottoms, particularly adjacent to deciduous and mixedwood stands. Changes in hydrology as a result of dams have resulted in the formation of alder thicket swamps (ES44) and meadow marshes (ES46) along many of these systems.
Due to the proximity of Manitoba, there is a strong prairie influence on open, dry bedrock and cliff communities within the conservation reserve. Bur oak forests along the Winnipeg River system likely have prairie elements as well, but unfortunately were not sampled during field reconnaissance. It is likely that further fieldwork would identify additional prairie, and potentially rare, species.
Rusty cottongrass is uncommon is the Site Region 4-S. It was found in a poor fen in the northern part of the reserve.
One osprey nest site is known from the island in the north of the reserve and another is located just outside the reserve southern boundary. A single bald eagle, considered Endangered by COSSARO, was sighted during field reconnaissance but no nest was observed.
Major information sources
Harris, A.G., S.C.McMurray, P.W.C.Uhlig, J.K.Jeglum, R.F.Foster and G.D. Racey. 1996. Field guide to the wetland ecosystem classification for northwestern Ontario. Ont. Min. Natur. Resour., Northwest Sci. & Technol. Thunder Bay, Ont. Field Guide FG-01. 74 pp. + Append.
Noble, T. 1995. Site Region 5S-1 Gap Analysis. Unpublished report for Ontario Parks, Ontario. Ont. Min. Natur. Resour. Thunder Bay, Ont. 23 p. + appendices.
OMNR. 1999. Ontario's Living Legacy – Land Use Strategy. Queen's Printer, Toronto.
Racey, G.D., A.G. Harris, J.K.Jeglum, R.F.Foster and G.M.Wickware. 1996. Terrestrial and wetland ecosites of northwestern Ontario. Ont. Min. Natur. Resour., Northwest Sci. & Technol. Thunder Bay, Ont. Field Guide FG-02. 88 pp. + Append.
Sims, R.A., W.D. Towill, K.A. Baldwin, P. Uhlig and G.M. Wickware. 1997. Field guide to the forested ecosystem classification for northwestern Ontario. Ont. Min. Natur. Resour. , Northwest Sci. & Technol. Thunder Bay, Ont. Field Guide FG-03. 176 p.
Additional fieldwork should be conducted to survey for additional plant species, particularly prairie elements and rare species. High priorities would be a boat survey along the Winnipeg River system and associated cliffs.
Significance level and summary of major representative values
The conservation reserve has significant representation for 4S-1 of conifer, deciduous, and mixed forests on lacustrine deposits and bedrock. It may also have significant prairie elements.
Date Compiled: 25/06/03
Robert Foster, Allan Harris
Table 1. Land cover classes of Musk Lake (derived from Landsat data).
|Landcover Class||Area (ha)||% of Site|
|Dense Deciduous Forest||1568||32|
|Dense Coniferous Forest||59||1|
|Mixed Forest – mainly Deciduous||409||8|
|Mixed Forest – mainly Coniferous||1008||21|
|Sparse Coniferous Forest||782||16|
|Sparse Deciduous Forest||190||4|
|Old Cuts and Burns||483||10|
Table 2. Rapid assessment plot summary from Musk Lake.
|Plot No.||V / W Type||ES Type||Date|
Table 3. Landform - Vegetation (LV) type representation for Musk Lake (ha).
|Site District||Landform||Surface Expression||burn||conifer||conifer mixed||deciduous mixed||deciduous||open wetland||sparse forest||vegetated bedrock||Grand Total|
Table 4. Site type matrix for Musk Lake.
|Arid||Very Dry||Dry||Dry Mesic||Mesic||Wet Mesic||Wet||Very Wet||Saturated||Open Water|
|Colder Loam||19,20,21, 26,27,29||19,20,21, 26,27,29||19,20, 26,27,29|
|Normal Loam||19,20,21, 26,27,29||19,20,21, 26,27,29||19,20, 26,27,29|
Musk Lake species lists
The following species lists are based fieldwork conducted July 15, 2001 and data provided by OMNR.
Taxonomic order and species names generally follow Morton and Venn (1990). Introduced species are marked "I". Provincially rare species (Oldham 1999) are marked "P". Regionally rare species (TBFN 1998) are marked "R". Voucher specimens were collected for species marked "*".
|Family Equisetaceae||Horsetail Family|
|Equisetum fluviatile L.||Water Horsetail|
|sylvaticum L.||Woodland Horsetail|
|Family Dennstaetiaceae||Bracken Family|
|Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn||Bracken|
|Family Dryopteridaceae||True Fern Family|
|Dryopteris carthusiana (Villars) H.P.Fuchs||Spinulose Wood Fern|
|Gymnocarpium dryopteris (L.) Newman||Oak Fern|
|* Onoclea sensibilis L.||Sensitive Fern|
|* Woodsia ilvensis (L.) R.Br.||Rusty Woodsia|
|Family Lycopodiaceae||Clubmoss Family|
|annotinum L.||Bristly Clubmoss|
|Lycopodium clavatum L.||Common Clubmoss|
|Lycopodium complanatum L.||Ground Cedar|
|Lycopodium obscurum L.||Flat-branched Tree Clubmoss|
|Family Cupressaceae||Juniper Family|
|Juniperus communis L.||Common Ground Juniper|
|Family Pinaceae||Pine Family|
|Abies balsamea (L.) Miller||Balsam Fir|
|Picea glauca (Moench) Voss||White Spruce|
|Picea mariana (Miller) BSP||Black Spruce|
|Pinus banksiana Lambert||Jack Pine|
|Family Cyperaceae||Sedge Family|
|* Carex adusta Boott||Burnt Sedge|
|* Carex aenea Fern.||Copper Sedge|
|Carex brunnescens (Pers.) Poiret ex Lam.||Brownish Sedge|
|* Carex canescens L.||Silvery Sedge|
|Carex chordorrhiza Ehrh. ex L.f.||Creeping Sedge|
|* Carex lacustris Willd.||Lake Sedge|
|* Carex leptalea Wahlenb.||Bristle-stalked Sedge|
|* Carex leptonervia (Fern.) Fern.||Finely-nerved Sedge|
|* Carex merritt-fernaldii Mackenzie||Merritt Fernald's Sedge|
|Carex stricta Lam.||Tussock Sedge|
|* Carex trisperma Dewey||Three-fruited Sedge|
|* Carex utriculata Boott||Beaked Sedge|
|Carex vaginata Tausch||Sheathed Sedge|
|* Eriophorum chamissonis C. Meyer||Rusty Cottongrass|
|Family Liliaceae||Lily Family|
|Clintonia borealis (Aiton) Raf.||Blue Bead Lily|
|* Lilium philadelphicum L.||Wood Lily|
|Wood Lily Maianthemum canadense Desf.||Wild Lily-of-the-valley|
|Streptopus roseus Michaux||Rose Twisted Stalk|
|Family Poaceae||Grass Family|
|Calamagrostis canadensis (Michaux ) P.Beauv.||Bluejoint Grass|
|* Danthonia spicata (L.) P.Beauv. ex Roemer & Schultes||Poverty Grass|
|* Elymus trachycaulus (Link) Gould in Shinn.||Slender Wheat Grass|
|* Oryzopsis pungens (Torrey ex Sprengel) A.Hitchc.||Ricegrass|
|* Panicum acuminatum Sw.||Woolly Panic Grass|
|* Panicum depauperatum Muhlenb.||Impoverished Panic Grass|
|* Poa palustris L.||Fowl Blue Grass|
|Schizachne purpurascens (Torrey) Swallen||Purple Melic Grass|
|Family Apiaceae||Parsley Family|
|Sanicula marilandica L.||Black Snakeroot|
|Family Apocynaceae||Dogbane Family|
|Apocynum androsaemifolium L.||Spreading Dog Bane|
|Family Araliaceae||Ginseng Family|
|Aralia hispida Vent.||Bristly Sarsaparilla|
|Aralia nudicaulis L.||Wild Sarsaparilla|
|Family Aristolochiaceae||Birthwort Family|
|Asarum canadense L.||Wild Ginger|
|Family Asteraceae||Sunflower Family|
|Achillea millefolium L.||Common Yarrow|
|* Antennaria howellii E. Greene||Common Pussytoes|
|Aster macrophyllus L.||Large-leaved Aster|
|* Lactuca canadensis L.||Wild Lettuce|
|Petasites frigidus (L.) Fries||Sweet Coltsfoot|
|Family Balsaminaceae||Touch-me-not Family|
|Impatiens capensis Meerb.||Jewel Weed|
|Family Betulaceae||Birch Family|
|Alnus incana (L.) Moench||Speckled Alder|
|Alnus viridis (Chaix) DC.||Green Alder|
|Betula papyrifera Marshall||White Birch|
|Family Campanulaceae||Harebell Family|
|Campanula rotundifolia L.||Harebell|
|Family Caprifoliaceae||Honeysuckle Family|
|Diervilla lonicera Miller||Bush Honeysuckle|
|Linnaea borealis L.||Twinflower|
|Lonicera dioica L.||Limber Honeysuckle|
|Lonicera oblongifolia (Goldie ) Hook.||Swamp Fly Honeysuckle|
|* Viburnum edule (Michaux) Raf.||Mooseberry|
|Viburnum rafinesquianum Schultes||Downy Arrow Wood|
|Family Cornaceae||Dogwood Family|
|Cornus canadensis L.||Bunchberry|
|Family Ericaceae||Heath Family|
|Andromeda polifolia L.||Bog Rosemary|
|Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Sprengel||Common Bearberry|
|Gaultheria hispidula (L.) Muhlenb . ex Bigelow||Creeping Snowberry|
|Kalmia polifolia Wangenh.||Bog Laurel|
|Ledum groenlandicum Oeder||Labrador Tea|
|Vaccinium angustifolium Aiton||Low Blueberry|
|Vaccinium myrtilloides Michaux||Velvet-leaved Blueberry|
|Vaccinium oxycoccos L.||Small Cranberry|
|Vaccinium vitis-idaea L.||Rock Cranberry|
|Family Fabaceae||Pea Family|
|Lathyrus ochroleucus Hook.||Pale Vetchling|
|* Lathyrus venosus Muhlenb.ex Willd.||Wild Sweet Pea|
|Family Fumariaceae||Fumitoy Family|
|Corydalis sempervirens (L.) Pers.||Pale Corydalis|
|Family Grossulariaceae||Currant Family|
|Ribes glandulosum Grauer||Skunk Currant|
|* Ribes triste Pall.||Swamp Red Currant|
|Family Lamiaceae||Mint Family|
|Lycopus uniflorus Michaux||Northern Bugleweed|
|Family Oleaceae||Olive Family|
|Fraxinus nigra Marshall||Black Ash|
|Epilobium angustifolium L.||Fireweed|
|Family Polygonaceae||Buckwheat Family|
|Polygonum cilinode Michaux||Fringed Bindweed|
|Family Primulaceae||Primrose Family|
|* Lysimachia thyrsiflora L.||Tufted Loosestrife|
|Trientalis borealis Raf.||Starflower|
|Family Pyrolaceae||Wintergreen Family|
|Chimaphila umbellata (L.) Barton||Pipsissewa|
|Moneses uniflora (L.) A.Gray||One-flowered Pyrola|
|Orthilia secunda (L.) House||One-sided Wintergreen|
|Family Ranunculaceae||Buttercup Family|
|Caltha palustris L.||Marsh Marigold|
|Family Rhamnaceae||Buckthorn Family|
|Rhamnus alnifolia L'Her.||Alder-leaved Buckthorn|
|Family Rosaceae||Rose Family|
|Fragaria virginiana Miller||Wild Strawberry|
|* Potentilla arguta Pursh||Tall Cinquefoil|
|* Potentilla norvegica L.||Rough Cinquefoil|
|Potentilla palustris (L.) Scop.||Marsh Cinquefoil|
|Potentilla tridentata Sol. ex Aiton||Three-toothed Cinquefoil|
|Prunus pensylvanica L.f.||Pincherry|
|Rosa acicularis Lindley||Prickly Wild Rose|
|Rubus idaeus L.||Common Raspberry|
|Rubus pubescens Raf .||Dwarf Raspberry|
|Spiraea alba Duroi||Narrow-leaved Meadow Sweet|
|Family Rubiaceae||Bedstraw Family|
|* Galium boreale L.||Northern Bedstraw|
|Galium trifidum L.||Small Bedstraw|
|* Hedyotis longifolia (Gaertn.) Hook.||Venus'-pride|
|Family Salicaceae||Willow Family|
|Salix pedicellaris Pursh||Bog Willow|
|Family Santalaceae||Sandalwood Family|
|Comandra umbellata (L.) Nutt.||Toadflax|
|Family Saxifragaceae||Saxifrage Family|
|Mitella nuda L.||Naked Mitrewort|
|Saxifraga virginiensis Michaux||Early Saxifrage|
|Family Violaceae||Violet Family|
|* Viola macloskeyi F.Lloyd||Northern White Violet|
Musk Lake animal species list
Taxonomic order and nomenclature follow AOU (1998) for birds and Banfield (1974) for mammals. Nesting evidence codes follow the Ontario Breeding Bird Atlas:
- H - Species observed in breeding season in suitable habitat
- S – Singing male present or breeding calls heard observed in breeding season in suitable habitat
- P – Pair observed in their breeding season in suitable habitat
- NU – Used nest or eggshell found (occupied / laid during the atlas period)
- FY – Recently fledged young or downy young
|Kites, Eagles and Hawks||Family Accipitridae|
|Bald Eagle||Haliaeetus leucocephalus|
|Jays, Crows and Ravens||Family Corvidae|
|Common Raven||Corvus corax|
|Winter Wren||Troglodytes troglodytes|
|Swainson's Thrush||Catharus ustulatus|
|Hermit Thrush||Catharus guttatus|
|Red-eyed Vireo||Vireo olivaceus|
|Tennessee Warbler||Vermivora peregrina|
|Nashville Warbler||Vermivora ruficapilla|
|Northern Parula||Parula americana|
|Magnolia Warbler||Dendroica magnolia|
|Canada Warbler||Wilsonia canadensis|
|New World Sparrows||Family Emberizidae|
|Chipping Sparrow||Spizella passerina|
|White-throated Sparrow||Zonotrichia albicollis|
|New World Blackbirds||Family Icteridae|
|Red-winged Blackbird||Agelaius phoeniceus|
|Wood Frog||Rana sylvatica|
|Red Squirrel||Tamiasciurus hudsonicus|
|Black Bear||Ursus americanus|
|Weasels and Their Allies||Family Mustelidae|
|White-tailed Deer||Odocoileus virginianus|
Appendix D: Earth Science Inventory Checksheet
Detailed information for site C2382 Musk Lake
This reserve was identified under the provincial Lands for Life - Ontario's Living Legacy Program. It was principally identified for its life science representation, with clay substrate being the only previous earth science value recognized.
Musk Lake conservation reserve incorporates lands bounded by the border with Manitoba on the west, Tetu Lake and Winnipeg River on the east and Musk Lake on the south. Boundary Island is a large island in the Winnipeg River. The reserve comprises 4405 hectares within Kenora MNR District. Elevations range from lower than the 1000 ft (304.8 m) a.s.l. recorded at Tug Channel (or Boundary Falls) on the Winnipeg River to higher than 1250 ft (381.0 m) a.s.l. on bedrock hills southeast of Eaglenest Lake, adjacent to the Manitoba border.
Earth science features:
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve lies wholly within the Archean age Winnipeg River subprovince. The entire Reserve is underlain by a single phase of granitic rock of the Tetu Lake batholith, a very large irregularly shaped potassium rich plutonic intrusion (Breaks and Bond 1993) that extends westward into Manitoba, eastward to Highway 596, and southward to the CPR tracks (Breaks et al 1993, 1975). This rock forms extensive rugged outcrops in the northern, eastern (photo 1) and southwest parts of the Reserve. The rock is a deep pink to red, massive, medium to coarsely crystalline biotite granite. In places the granite is very coarse grained to pegmatitic, commonly in parallel bands (station 4: photo 2). A variety of fracture sets, commonly in 3 dominant trends at any particular outcrop, were observed at each of the 9 stations visited. They are mostly widely spaced, on the order of 2 to 3 m apart, but as much as 10 m in places (photo 3). Long linear valleys and scarp edges in the granite that are oriented in a general north to north northeasterly direction are interpreted to be faults. A large scale concentric pattern observed in aerial photographs and from the air (photo 4) could not be related to any fracture pattern or other structure in the rocks inspected on the ground, and remains unexplained.
Musk Lake Conservation Reserve lies immediately west of the confluence of the English River with the Winnipeg River at Tetu Lake. The combined flow, as the Winnipeg River, passes to the north and south around Boundary Island, through Tug Channel (or Boundary Falls) (photo 5) and South Boundary Falls respectively. The river then flows westward through Eaglenest Lake into Manitoba. Glaciolacustrine plains lie marginal to each of the two river systems (Barnett et al 1991; Sado and Carswell 1987), a remnant of glacial Lake Agassiz. In the Reserve, glaciolacustrine deposits consist of deep water clays and silts mostly to the south of Big Northern Bay, and shallow water sands and silts to the north (Neilson 1989). Ground moraine till is interpreted to occur in the south, south and west of Bass Lake. Organic material occupies low lying areas along tributary streams, in particular south of Big Northern Bay.
On the high bedrock dominated ground in the northern half of the Reserve, in the southwest and in the east along the western shore line of Tetu Lake, glacially scoured pavements (station 1: photo 6) are commonly dotted with large perched boulders (station 2: photo 7). A large accumulation of boulders was observed form the air close to the western edge of the Reserve, close to the border with Manitoba (photo 8). This could be either the remnant of a former boulder beach or a recessional moraine deposit. Glacial striations were observed only at station 6 (photo 9), on a very small area of glacial polish, where they indicate movement of glacial ice toward the southwest (azimuth 240° measured). Absence of glacial polish suggests either its removal during wave action of glacial Lake Agassiz or Recent weathering action. Evidence of high energy glacial meltwater activity is provided by the discovery of a single pot hole at the top of a bedrock hill on the north shore of Musk Lake (station 9: photo 10).
Although the reserve encompasses a small portion of the very large Tetu Lake batholith, it is well exposed in extensive rugged outcrops, and representative of the dominant phase of the batholith. For these reasons it is of provincial significance, representing a large potash rich pluton in the Superior province, comparable to but smaller than the Lount Lake batholith.
None of the earth science values are in danger of being negatively affected by either cultural or natural impacts.
The combination of a possible boulder beach or recessional moraine deposit, glacially scoured pavements, perched boulders, evidence of wave action by glacial Lake Agassiz and high energy glacial meltwater in the form of a pot hole (and possibility of more to be discovered) suggests this Pleistocene environment to be worthy of further research.
Barnett, P.J., Henry, A.P. and Babuin, D. 1991. Quaternary Geology of Ontario, west- central sheet; Ontario Geological Survey, Map 2554, scale 1:1 000 000.
Breaks, F.W. and Bond, W.D. 1993. The English River Subprovince – an Archean gneiss belt: geology, geochemistry and associated mineralization; Ontario Geological Survey, Open File Report 5846, v. 1 and 2, 884 p.
Breaks, F.W., Bond, W.D. and Westerman, C.J. 1993. Compilation Map, English River Subprovince; Ontario Geological Survey, Map P.3091, scale 1:253 440.
Breaks, F.W., Bond, W.D., McWilliams, G.H., Gower, C.F., Findlay, D. and Stone, D. 1975. Operation Kenora-Sydney Lake, Umfreville-Separation Lakes Sheet, District of Kenora; Ontario Geological Survey, Preliminary Map P.1028, scale 1:63 360.
Neilson, J.M. 1989. Umfreville Lake, Data Base Map, Northern Ontario Engineering Geology Terrain Study ; Ontario Geological Survey, Map 5106, scale 1:100 000.
Sado, E.V. and Carswell, B.F. 1987. Surficial Geology of Northern Ontario; Ontario Geological Survey, Map 2518, scale 1:1 200 000.
- Rugged bedrock cliffs in the eastern part of the reserve.
- Coarse pink biotite granite containing pegmatitic bands. Note offset of band along a small fault parallel to the hammer handle. (Stn. 4; UTM 0345710E 5559349N)
- Aerial view of fracture pattern in pink granite near Musk Note widely spaced parallel fractures, and minor curved fractures.
- View toward the south of large scale concentric circular pattern in granite outcrops to the west of the reserve, in Manitoba. The southwest bay of Eaglenest Lake is in the bottom of the photograph.
- Tug Channel on the Winnipeg River at the north end of Boundary View towards the south, over Boundary Island. Note man-made rock-fill beach comprised of rock taken to deepen the channel.
- Glaciated granite pavement. (Stn. 1; UTM 0349348E 5556909N)
- Perched boulders on granite pavement. (Stn. 2; UTM 0350755E 5560340N)
- Boulder pile on glaciated granite pavement, close to station 5 (UTM 0346956E 5559455N).
- Small area of glacial polishing, including striations, surrounded by unpolished glacial (Stn. 6; UTM 0346186E 5555108N)
- Single pot hole on hill high above Musk Lake. (Stn. 9; UTM 0346067E 5554332N)
Glossary of geological terms
Archean: The earliest eon of Precambrian time, older than 2500 million years.
batholith: A very large body of igneous intrusive rock.
biotite: Black, opaque, platy ferro-magnesian mineral that parts along distinct cleavages.
glacial striations: Scratches and scours, commonly parallel to each other, on rock surfaces that are derived by the abrasive action of rock fragments embedded in glacial ice as it moves over the surface.
glaciolacustrine: A geologic process in which sediment is deposited in lakes marginal to a glacier by glacial meltwater streams.
granite: Specific term applied to granitic rocks in which potassic feldspar exceeds sodic feldspar. Biotite is the common mafic mineral.
granitic: General term applied to intrusive igneous rocks with visibly distinct crystallinity, that are quartz-bearing: includes granite, granodiorite, tonalite and quartz diorite.
granodiorite: Granitic rock with similar amounts of potassic and sodic feldspar, and commonly biotite as the mafic mineral component.
moraine: Sediment deposited by direct glacial action.
pegmatite: Very coarsely crystalline intrusive igneous rocks, commonly of granitic composition.
pluton: A body of igneous intrusive rock, regardless of size.
pot hole: Vertical hole of variable diameter and depth, scoured in bedrock by the prolonged action of granular debris carried in water falls.
Recent: The epoch of the Quaternary period that extended from the end of the Pleistocene epoch, around 10,000 years ago, to the present.
subprovince: Structural subdivision of a geologic province, commonly but not uniquely fault-bounded, based on distinctive internal rock types, structures, ages and metamorphic conditions.
till: Non sorted, non-stratified sediment carried or deposited by a glacier