COVID-19 Update:

Our Administrative Office remains closed to the public. All of our conservation areas are open for passive use. Staff continue to provide essential services and process permit applications. Email is the preferred method to contact staff.

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Mississippi River Watershed

Home > Watershed Facts & Management > Mississippi River Watershed

The Mississippi River is 200 km in length. Draining over 250 lakes and wetlands, the watershed encompasses an area of 3,750 kmĀ². From its headwaters at Mazinaw Lake to its confluence at the Ottawa River near Fitzroy Harbour, the river drops 210 m in elevation.

Flood Forecasting & Warning

Flood forecasting is one of the most important services that Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority provides to our residents and member municipalities. A timely warning of upcoming high-water conditions is critical to helping everybody to prepare and be better able to respond.

Our flood messages are sent to the media, posted on our website and shared on our social media channels. You can subscribe to receive MVCA flood messages via email. The following, colour coded symbols describe the watershed conditions. This is always indicated throughout our website.

Normal status indicates that no flood conditions exist. However, even during Normal conditions, the inherent risk to personal safety associated with flowing water still exists.

Watershed Conditions Statement - Water Safety: High flows, unsafe banks, melting ice, or other factors that could be dangerous for recreational users such as anglers, canoeists, hikers, children, pets, etc. Flooding is not expected.

Watershed Conditions Statement - Flood Outlook: Early notice of the potential for flooding based on weather forecasts calling for heavy rain, snow melt, high wind or other conditions that could lead to high runoff, cause ice jams, lakeshore flooding, or erosion.

Flooding is possible in specific watercourses or municipalities. Municipalities, emergency services, and individual landowners in flood-prone areas should prepare.

Flooding is imminent or already occurring in specific watercourses or municipalities.

Low Water Response

MVCA in partnership with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry helps in the coordination and support of local response in the event of a drought as part of the Ontario Low Water Response Program.

The Low Water Response Program has three condition levels. The levels are based on trends in rainfall and flows.