Program History


The benefits of a healthy riparian area, the area of lush vegetation bordering lakes, streams and rivers, are many. Vegetation traps sediment thus filtering water to keep fish, livestock and humans healthy and maintain shorelines, reducing the risk of erosion. Water stored in underground aquifers benefits everyone, and thriving plants support fish and wildlife populations. On the other hand, unhealthy riparian areas can result in lakes with raw, eroding shorelines and reduced water quality, wetlands with no willows or cattails, and creeks that no longer flow year-round are sure signs that a problem exists.

‘Riparian health’ is about recognizing and measuring the condition/function of a riparian area. When the measuring, or checkup, is done and a score, or diagnosis, is established, it can be determined if the system is in good working order. This summer Cows and Fish has been invited to conduct an inventory and assessment of our lakeshore riparian areas. This will provide a baseline of the riparian condition so that we may learn more about what role riparian health may play in some of the issues we face.

Alberta Riparian Habitat Management Society – Cows and Fish is a voluntary, nonprofit, stewardship program, promoting riparian awareness and management of healthy riparian areas.


LEPA a stakeholder in the Lac La Nonne Watershed Stewardship Society contributed their water sampling data and funds to the establishment of the provinces first volunteer State Of the Watershed Report. The local watershed community will benefit from this project as it will generate baseline information on the State of the Watershed, raise awareness of water quality and build partnerships and stewardship capacity in the La Lac Nonne watershed this is the first time water samples have been analyzed from streams in the Lac La Nonne watershed. Other watershed groups (Pigeon Lake/Battle River and Lac La Nonne/Pembina River) may also benefit from the success of the project, as Alberta Environment has established a pilot Volunteer Watershed Monitoring Program for stewardship groups using our group as a case study.

This is a comprehensive, living public document that will serve as a valuable tool for guiding local watershed planning/policy decisions. Environmental Engineering companies will be asked to use the document as a reference and then advise and suggest ways that environmental improvements can be made on the water bodies within the watershed.

For hard copies contact Lac La Nonne Watershed Stewardship Society (LWSS), Site 17 Box 22 RR 1, Gunn AB T0E 1A0 or email .


The Lac La Nonne area has a rich history of contributions made by the many pioneer families that settled in the area. The development of educational and spiritual facilities enhanced the growth of the community and served as an attraction for other families to locate in the vicinity. To commemorate their contributions the placement of a stone cairn on a cement pad with an appropriate plaque was established at Mission Park at the south end of the lake. The County of Barrhead provided assistance for this initiative.


In conjunction with our Membership drive a free copy of the book “On The Living Edge” was presented to Lac La Nonne lake front property owners. This guide for waterfront living developed by the Federation of Alberta Naturalists was made possible by a very generous donation from Sheila and Alf Otto and in partnership with the Living by Water Project – Federation of Alberta Naturalists.


A local volunteer Fire Brigade in the county of Barrhead for the permanent and seasonal residents was established (including access to a tank trunk located in the area) utilizing a grant from the Wild Rose Foundation and funds raised by LEPA.

In 2005 the group was assimilated into the new Town of Barrhead and County of Barrhead Fire Department