Lakes, rivers, wetlands and all bodies of water

What you should know:

There is an existing Quebec Water Policy, that aims at ensuring the safeguard of all life forms which depend on water, whether it is the aquatic flora or fauna. In line with this policy, the Municipality regulates certain human interventions to preserve the abundant natural wealth found in our region as well as the potential repercussions on tourism.

However, in order to attain this goal, the Municipality must be able to count on the collaboration of each and everyone, making sure all respect rigorously the by-laws regarding shore and shoreline protection. These clearly stipulate that no construction or work (tree cutting, backfill, excavation, septic installations, etc.) is allowed in the 15 metre protected zone. Certain exceptions exist, which require obtaining a certificate of authorisation.

What is the shore line protection zone?

It is a strip of land along a body of water, measured horizontally from the high water mark of a lake or of another body of water. This strip measures 15 meters.

What is the high water mark?

It is a line determined by a biologist identifying where the littoral ends and where the shore begins. This line is located at the natural high water mark, where the predominance of aquatic plants passes to a predominance of terrestrial plants or, if there are no aquatic plants, where the terrestrial plants stop towards the body of water. In which case, where there is a retainer wall legally erected, the line begins from the top of the structure.

What is the littoral?

The littoral begins from the high water mark and extends towards the center of the body of water.

Certain constructions and work which are authorised in the protected 15 meter strip:

  • A five (5) meter wide access path designed to prevent erosion;
  • A floating dock meeting regulations bordering a place which is already built;
  • Removing dead trees or trees that have been damaged by fire, lightning, insects, mushrooms or other destructive agents;
  • Natural stabilization work: when the slope, the environment and land conditions allow it, banks cleared of surface must be stabilized by specific shoreline plants, such as willow, cedar, larch, gale, dogwood, alder or shoreline vine which stop erosion and re-establish the natural character of the bank, or when otherwise impossible, certain mechanical stabilization work can be considered. In this precise case, the owner must consult a specialist or a professional.

Click on these links to visit related sites (French only):


Document list


Do not mow the ditches!

Document PDF de 11 kb

Les plantes aquatiques envahissantes (French only)

Le myriophylle à épi (French only)
Document PDF de 201 kb

Listing of shoreline plants

Document PDF de 321.6 kb

The Town Hall is opened from
Monday to Thursday
8:30 to 12:00 and from
12:45 to 16:30, and Friday
from 8:30 to 12:00

567, chemin du Village
Morin-Heights (Québec)
J0R 1H0

Telephone : 450 226-3232
Fax : 450 226-8786