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Manitoba from the Air
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Irrigation on the Assiniboine Delta East of Brandon

This near real-colour satellite image shows part of the upper Assiniboine Delta east of Brandon. The Assiniboine River 1 cuts across the area from northwest to southeast. Its valley sides are covered by deciduous woodland (green) especially the northeast side 2. Spring sapping has caused northeast retreat of the valley wall at Wiggle Springs 3. The Little Souris River 4 joins the main river from the west with the Spring Valley Hutterite Colony 5 located near the junction. Land southwest of the Assiniboine has a definite northwest/southeast lineation, with wet low-lying areas (green) 6 being wooded and slightly higher areas being cleared for agriculture 7. The latter represent poorly developed very high-level Lake Agassiz strandlines.

The most obvious features northwest of the Assiniboine are circles 8 representing areas on which centre-pivot irrigation is being practised with water derived from the Assiniboine Delta. A central supply well supplies water that is sent into pipes on wheels that rotate about the pivot spraying water over the cropped areas. Speed of rotation and water dispersal can be adjusted to suit crop requirements. In this area the most common crop is potatoes, as they favour the uniformly textured sandy soils. Quarter sections 9, half sections 10, and whole sections 11 can be irrigated from a single central well. Uniform colour within the cropped area indicates that the same crop is being grown throughout. However, some colour variations 12 may indicate different crops or different stages of development of the same crop.

Almost black areas in the northwest 13 and east 14 are sewage lagoons for Brandon (just off the image to the west) and Shilo (just off the image to the east) respectively. Gravel roads mainly follow section lines 15, but the northwest/southeast linear feature in the northeast 16 is PR 340 leading to Shilo. A gas pipeline parallels the road.

Figure 14.22

Irrigation on the Assiniboine Delta East of Brandon