What is a Watershed?

A watershed is an area of land that receives rain and snow which collects and then eventually makes its way into a marsh, stream, river, lake or into the ground replenishing the water table. Homes, farms, cottages, forests, small towns, big cities and more can make up watersheds. Some cross municipal, provincial and even international borders. They come in all shapes and sizes and can vary from millions of acres, like the land that drains into the Great Lakes to a few acres that create a pond.


Numerous wetlands, natural riverbank corridors and forests are intertwined throughout the watershed, providing essential habitat to the many species of fish, mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and insects that thrive in this region. Habitats such as wetlands and natural river corridors also provide increased flood and drought control throughout the year, improve our air and water quality, prevent soil erosion and provide recreational opportunities for those with a love of the outdoors.

The Crowe Valley watershed gets its headwaters near Paudash Lake in Wilberforce, Ontario. From here, many rivers gather momentum and size as they drain south of Marmora, where the Crowe River drains into the Trent River on its journey towards the Bay of Quinte and Lake Ontario.