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Your Link to Muskoka's Water!


Lake Muskoka


Muskoka SmLake Muskoka is centrally located within the District of Muskoka with many significant areas located on and around its shores. Some of these areas include a gullery on Eleanor Island in the southern basin in addition to deer wintering yards along the northwestern shores. Hardy Lake Provincial Park is located on the northeastern shore as well as the Torrance Barrens which are situated nearby.


Lake Data Sheet

Muskoka's Lake System Health monitoring program includes tests for Secchi depth (a measure of water clarity), phosphorus concentrations (a measure of nutrient enrichment), dissolved oxygen and temperature.

Learn more about Monitoring Parameters

The data collected for each sample site is summarized in a Lake Data Sheet. The Interpretation of Water Quality Data document explains the information contained in the Lake Data Sheet.

For sampling methodology, please see the annual Lake System Health Monitoring Program report, which is available on the District Municipality of Muskoka website.

Muskoka Web Map: Sample Points

Bala Bay Lake Data Sheet   (coordinates: 45.0067 -79.6008)
Boyd Bay Lake Data Sheet   (coordinates: 45.050277 -79.400833)
Dudley Bay Lake Data Sheet   (coordinates: 45.0425 -79.6132)
Main Basin Lake Data Sheet   (coordinates: 45.0682 -79.5156)
Muskoka Bay Lake Data Sheet   (coordinates: 44.9259 -79.3979)
Whiteside Bay Lake Data Sheet   (coordinates: 45.0605 -79.6155)


Shoreline Land Use Maps

Shoreline Land Use Surveys collect data on shoreline vegetation, shoreline structures and the first 20 metres of land surrounding a waterbody. This information is then mapped and provided to lake associations, Area Municipalities and other interested parties for planning purposes. 

Muskoka Bay Shoreline Land Use Survey    2007    2017
Muskoka River (confluence to mouth) Shoreline Land Use Survey


Biological Monitoring Data

A Biological Monitoring Program is available for lake associations interested in becoming more involved in lake monitoring and broader lake planning.  Muskoka's Biological Monitoring Technician is available to train lake residents to undertake volunteer monitoring programs that are based on standard protocols such as plantwatch, frogwatch, forest health and benthic analysis.  Ongoing support is provided to meet the needs of individual associations.

The Biological Monitoring Program focuses on EMAN's benthic and terrestrial plot protocols, which helped supplement the existing lake monitoring and shoreline land use data.

Please contact us for more information about the Biological Monitoring program and how you can get involved.

Benthic Macro-invertebrate Monitoring

The benthic macro-invertebrate sampling protocol requires the collection and classification of macro-invertebrates from a variety of developed and undeveloped sites of the near shore environment. The program pilots the standard protocol for benthic analysis developed by the Ontario Benthos Biomonitoring Network and spearheaded by the Ministry of the Environment through the Dorset Environmental Science Centre.

Download the Benthic Aquatic Invertebrate Information Sheet to interpret the data contained in the Benthic Data Sheet below.

Lake Muskoka Aquatic Invertebrate Data Sheet


Terrestrial Plot Monitoring

Terrestrial forest plots require the establishment of a 20-metre by 20-metre permanent plot. All the trees are then identified, tagged and classified according to health. Monitoring is done on a yearly basis within the plot. Various other aspects of forest health can also be monitored within the standard plot, including decay rates, tree regeneration, lichen diversity, and salamander occurrence.

Terrestrial forest plots are established and monitored based on the protocol developed by EMAN.


Lake Association Contacts


Related Information


Lake location, access points and flow direction map.

Lake Data Sheets
How is the water quality in the lake?

Shoreline Land Use Maps
How much of the shoreline on the lake is natural?

Biological Monitoring Data
Benthic and terrestrial plot monitoring data for the lake.

Lake Association Contacts
Lake associations on the lake and in the surrounding area.

Related Information
Links to other sources of data and information for the lake.