The Seine-Rat River Conservation District (SRRCD) was pleased to host the 2016 Manitoba Conservation Districts Association (MCDA) tour right here in our watershed. This annual event showcases the very best of the Manitoba Conservation Districts Program. Each year, one of Manitoba’s 18 Conservation Districts is invited to host the tour. Over 100 visitors from across the province came to attend this year’s event that featured sustainable projects by the SRRCD. The wealth of knowledge and the diversity of visitors enriched this event with meaningful discussions about alternative land use initiatives to build a more sustainable Manitoba.

Check out our first storybook map

The projects featured on the 2016 MCDA tour were designed for temporary water storage and are unique to each site. It is a privilege to showcase the benefits of effective water retention in our watershed and we are proud to provide you with an opportunity to revisit the project sites we encountered on our tour. Click here to view an interactive story map of the 2016 MCDA tour. We hope this map will inspire memories of the meaningful discussions and ideas that stirred our imaginations along the way.

We are also excited to share David Wiens’ story as it was featured in the Manitoba Co-operator. Click “Farmer sees water storage as ‘win-win,’ ” to read more about the remarkable history of the De Salaberry Crown Lands & Skyline Diary Water Retention project.

What are ecological goods and services?

The heart of our watershed initiatives are made up of grassroots innovators, like David Wiens, who give meaning to the value of ecological goods and services (EG&S). EG&S refer to the benefits provided to humans by healthy ecosystems. Ecological goods include things like clean air, fresh water, and the food we produce. The natural world provides us with essential ecological services that are necessary to sustain life, like water and air purification, flood and drought protection, pollination of crops and vegetation, and soil renewal. The value society places on ecological goods and services creates a demand for healthy ecosystems that can be met by private landowners.

Farmers are in the best position to use their land to produce EG&S. They also have unique opportunities to take leadership of environmental priorities in partnership with their communities. Sustainable land use initiatives that promote the provision of EG&S are gaining momentum in Manitoba. The Province of Manitoba recently announced its commitment to implementing a province-wide program based on the Alternative Land Use Services model to help reduce flooding and improve water quality and nutrient management. This is fantastic news for a more sustainable Manitoba!

SRRCD programs are custom designed for farmers

The projects featured by the SRRCD on the MCDA tour were initiated at the local level by people whose livelihoods are deeply connected to the health of our watershed. These innovative projects were custom designed to enhance farming operations unique to each farm. They also provide ecological goods and services to communities in the surrounding area. Our programs are welcomed by early adopters who believe in farming for the next generation. They are farmers, innovators, and leaders who are willing to take ownership of the health of their watershed for the long-term sustainability of their farming operations. The SRRCD is pleased to support their vision by doing the legwork behind the project planning and implementation of projects for sustainably-minded farmers, allowing them to do what they do best.

Visit us online at to find out more about the programs we offer or sign up for our monthly newsletter. You can also stop by one of our offices in La Broquerie or Vita. Let’s chat!