File photo.

Take it Off campaign encourages ice hut removal

As spring thaw approaches, hut owners are encouraged to remove huts sooner rather than later

It’s that time of year again when anglers are asked to remove their ice huts off the lake in the Take it Off campaign. While owners are not legally required to remove the huts until March 31, Roger Dufresne, chair of the Sylvan Lake Management Committee is encouraging hut removal before that date as the warmer temperatures will cause the ice surface to deteriorate.

“On behalf of the committee, I urge owners to think of safety and the health of the environment when they consider their decision,” said Dufresne in an official press release.

While most anglers have their huts off the lake before the spring thaw makes it impossible to do so, several huts have sunk into the lake in previous years.This creates a hazardous environment for the ecosystems that are part of the lake and surrounding areas. Wood, gasoline, furniture and plastic are some of the debris that can end up sinking to the bottom of the lake or floating on the surface.

“We all want our lakes to remain healthy, so we can enjoy them – safely – all year round,” Dufresne said.

The Sylvan Lake Management Committee manages the Take it Off campaign, supported by the five Summer Villages of Sylvan Lake, the Sylvan Lake RCMP, Alberta Environment & Sustainable Resource Development, Sylvan Lake Fish & Game Association, Lacombe County and Red Deer County and the Town of Sylvan Lake.

Hut registration can be done year-round at www.sylvanlake.ca/takeitoff. The program is voluntary and makes it possible for huts to be removed and reported if they are left on the ice past March 31.



myra.nicks@sylvanlakenews.com

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