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Drinking Water Safety


BUYER BEWARE - Water Companies 

The Mohawk Administration Office does not endorse or promote any water treatment company selling their product though community door-to-door canvassing or advertising.

Should any company provide solicitation on your property and advise homeowners their product was pre-approved by the Band Office/Administration Office please note, this is false information.

If you choose to allow the company access to your premises and allow the company to provide information regarding your water quality, that is your choice as the property and homeowner.

The chemical makeup of each water supply varies; not one product is right for everyone's various types of water supply. Always remember water companies visiting your property have invested interest in you purchasing their product and in most cases sales people can be very convincing. MBQ can test many parameters of water quality to verify the water's safety and/or make recommendations for remedy.

If you wish to have your water tested for various parameters please contact the Environment Department (Water Quality services) within the Administration Office to arrange an appointment at your convenience at no cost to homeowner. Each situation may require further details for each water analysis.

If you have any questions or require further information please feel free to contact

Liz at the Mohawk Administration Office at 613-396-3424

Boil Water Reminder

As a reminder, in February 2008 Health Canada recommended the Tyendinaga Mohawk Council place a precautionary boil water advisory on all the ground water fed wells in the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory.

Click Here for more information on the Boil Water Reminder.


Precautions for identifying Blue Green Algae

The Environment Program encourages residents with shore wells (dug well 100 ft, drilled 50 ft from shore) take extra precautions to identify the algae.  If anyone identifies Blue Green Algae they should contact us at 613-396-3424. 

Information on Blue Green Algae:

Quinte Conservation Algae Watch

Info for drinking water

Mission Statement  

The Environment is a gift and it is our responsibility as caretakers to protect it. A healthy environment means healthy people. Honouring diversity, respecting creations life-cycle, embracing our interconnectedness to creation, practicing Kanyen’kehaka traditional beliefs, and using the Ohenton Karihwate’hkwen as our guide is the foundation of a healthy and sustainable community for future generations.



Well Water in Tyendinaga

There are currently 785 wells in Tyendinaga, and approximately 265 units are on the Municipal water supply from the neighboring Town of Deseronto.  Health Canada recommended Tyendinaga Mohawk Council place a Territory wide Precautionary Boil Water Advisory for those members utilizing ground water wells (in place since 2008). The precautionary BWA is in place due to the possibility of water borne parasites (spore forming bacteria) in the ground water, such as cryptosporidium or giardia which could potentially result in life threatening implications if consumed. The water borne parasites could be present in Tyendinaga’s ground water due to the compromised nature of the geology, which has a shallow overburden with fractured limestone bedrock.  Approximately half of the households and businesses on the Territory have a private water treatment system including proper filtration, installed for the purposes of providing useable water. Filtration is required should you want to consume your water.


Municipal Water Supply

The municipal water supply shared with the Town of Deseronto, is a surface water treatment facility utilizing modern equipment that is continuously monitored to ensure it meets the Canadian Drinking Water Standards. This supply is considered safe for consumption and does not require additional water treatment in homes/business.


Drinking Water Safety Program Overview

The Drinking Water Safety Program works in conjunction with the Environmental CHR to provide public water education, well/site inspections and comprehensive sampling.

We recommend regular bacteriological sampling of your drinking water, at least three to four times per year (each season, if possible). We also recommend at least one chemical sample per year testing specially for nitrates.  MBQ staff can collect water samples from participating homes and businesses who request samples to identify the health and safety of their drinking water. 

  • Comprehensive water sampling and reporting for:
    • Bacteriological (total coliforms and E.Coli) and chemical analysis which includes full spectrum samples for fluoride, sodium, nitrites, nitrates, manganese, colour etc.
  • Samples can also be analyzed for organics, inorganic, metals, b-tex etc.
  • RAW water sources can also be collected
  • Pesticide testing – information required before bottle order please call department to discuss

All water results are kept private and confidential. The results are provided to the homeowner through regular household mail and kept on file within the department and database. If an adverse sample is reported to the department from an accredited laboratory, the homeowner is contacted via phone to discuss any recommendations and resample’s as required.

Well inspections and site visits can be provided with MBQ staff and Health Canada upon request of the homeowner. It’s preferred if the homeowner can be available while inspection is being complete to ensure there are no gaps in reporting. The inspection report will be mailed to the homeowner upon completion which will include recommendations for any upgrades.

Monthly bacteriological water samples are collected at designated facilities within the community as well as quarterly chemical analysis. Contact department if you would like more information about designated facilities.

Please keep in mind, well water can be compromised by a number of different factors:

  • Poorly constructed wells – improperly sealed/protected
  • Wells that have not been decommissioned/properly decommissioned
  • Septic systems too close to wells
  • Improperly installed septic systems
  • Garbage dumping
  • Chemical storage
  • Agriculture and pets
  • Industry


Key Messages

  1. Protect the source – begin by reducing and eliminating potential contaminants
  2. Test your well water regularly – target of bacteriological testing three-four times a year
  3. Maintain wells –ensure that your well functions as an adequate barrier against potential contaminants
  4. Decommission abandoned wells
  5. Hire only Ministry of the Environment (MOE) licensed well contractors


Programs & Services

Sampling & Inspections

  • collection of residential and business water samples as required/requested
  • Monthly samples of designate facilities
  • Sampling and testing of all community distribution systems, cisterns, public wells and designated facilities
  • Review and Interpretation of water results according to the Canadian Drinking Water Guidelines

All sampling and inspections can be collected by MBQ staff at the request of a business or private home owner.  Samples will be tested off-site, and the results will be reviewed by MBQ staff who will contact individuals regarding the results. Please keep in mind only those members who” own” the premises have authority to request an inspection. If you are renting a household or business and would like an inspection please contact the building owner to make arrangements through the department. 


Well Aware Pilot Project

The Well Aware Pilot Project is a public education program which has been established with Green Communities Canada, Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corp. and the Well Wise Resource Centre.  Well Aware generates awareness within the community on safe well water practices.  The program will train MBQ staff to assist community members with guided self-assessments of their water wells. A detailed written report of the assessment will be provided including information about wells, septic and chemical storage etc.

Please call the department if you wish to participate in the guided self-assessment for your water well.

Well Aware encourages well owners to look closely at their own wells and their own activities that may influence well water quality. Water protection in its fullest sense requires a greater public understanding of the water cycle, groundwater flow, pathways of contamination, and issues such as climate change, loss of groundwater recharge function, and groundwater depletion. Well Aware works to strengthen and broaden the foundation for science-based stewardship of Ontario’s groundwater resources.


  1. Build awareness among the rural population of well owner best management practices and common pathways of contamination;
  2. Motivate rural well owners to take positive action to protect groundwater;
  3. Refine effective delivery models for rural water quality enhancement programs for replication on communities beyond the scope of this project;
  4. Encourage the transfer of well stewardship knowledge and behavior change from neighbor to neighbor; and
  5. Enhance community capacity to address local threats to groundwater quality for years to come.


Wastewater sampling

Working in conjunction with Premier Technologies and First Nations Engineering Services, the DWSP collects monthly samples from the Peatland Wastewater Filtration System to ensure its operating efficiently. Presently the sewage system is servicing the Tyendinaga Health Centre, Quinte Mohawk School and soon to be Community Well-Being Facility.



24 Meadow Drive, Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, ON

Phone: 613-396-3424

Fax: 613-396-3627