We recognize that the health of our lake is important, but what determines lake health?  Ideally, we want a lake that has good water quality, and is free of pollutants and invasive flora and fauna.

Several factors influence water quality, an important one being the availability of key nutrients such as phosphorus to aquatic plants and algae.  Too much phosphorous can lead to algal blooms, particularly blue-green algae (cyanobacteria) which release toxins and greatly compromises water quality. Regular monitoring of total phosphorus levels and water clarity to determine and track our lake’s productivity is an effective way to evaluate the risk of algal blooms.  Using phosphate-free detergents, restricting fertilizer use, reducing soil erosion from the shore into the lake, and keeping septic systems well-maintained are ways to keep phosphorus levels in check.

Surveying the vegetation in our lake’s littoral zone (shallow water where aquatic plants grow) for both native and invasive plants is also important.  Keeping track of changes in the density and diversity of native plants, as well as identifying non-native invasive species as early as possible, is necessary for rapid intervention to reduce their impact on water quality.

A more detailed explanation of the testing recommended for our lake can be found here.

Let’s do our part to keep our lake clean and healthy for many years to come!