On Thursday, August 11, PLM will be on Bear Lake for another survey with a particular focus on Starry Stonewort. They will also be treating for Starry Stonewort on the same day and will return for treatment of other invasive species if found during the survey. If your lakefront is treated, you will find a sign after treatment with any use restrictions.
- August Meeting Cancelled: The August regular meeting has been cancelled. See updates below.
- Fenner’s Ditch Phoslock Treatment: The first treatment was completed the last week in July. The second and final treatment for this year will take place the last week in August. As a reminder, there are NO WATER USE RESTRICTIONS for Phoslock, as confirmed by PLM and EGLE. These treatments will result in less algae growth, but not necessarily get rid of existing algae. The real results will be seen in the spring of 2023. Additional treatments for 2023 will be evaluated, with the permit application happening much earlier.
- Starry Stonewort: Several residents have provided pictures of Starry Stonewort near shorelines, causing issues for watercraft, especially PWCs. Starry Stonewort is an invasive species, which can grow up to 7’ tall. PLM has ben contacted and we are in the process of arranging another survey and treatment within the next 7-10 days (weather permitting). If you have this on your lakefront, please email Darrel, Paul, or Craig with a photo, and we will be sure to have PLM take a close look to identify and treat. Further updates to follow, and for more information on Starry Stonewort, please refer to our Education page on www.bllb.org.
- Native Plants Increasing: Native plant volume continue to increase as water temperature stays warm and we continue to reduce invasive species. The native plants are good for the lake and help reduce algae volumes. These native plants can become a nuisance, and are much harder to get approval to treat, unless they get extremely out of hand. Raking plants out of areas needed to create a pathway for navigation or swimming is acceptable but try to keep as much native plants as possible.
- September BLLB Meeting: The next BLLB meeting is Thursday, September 8 at 6:00 PM at the North Muskegon City Hall.
Fenner’s Ditch Phoslock Treatment APPROVED by EGLE. The permit was issued on Friday, July 22, 2022. The first application will be applied Thursday, July 28, 2022. NO RESTRICTIONS for use of Water required by residents or general public. The second application to follow. PLM to confirm specific date, but expected 30-45 days after first application.
Here is the survey map from the treatment last week. The gold shaded areas were treated for algae, and the black shaded areas along the shoreline were treated for Eurasian Watermilfoil, Curly Leaf Pondweed and algae.
There were good results from the areas treated in June, and results from this treatment should be seen in 7-10 days from application. PLM observed a huge rebound in native plants, which is great, as it is indicating our lake is improving, but we’ll have to monitor to see if this “good stuff” becomes too much of a nuisance. Look for educational material to be posted on our website in the near future to help in identifying native vs. invasive species.
The EGLE permit for the Phoslock treatment for Fenner’s Ditch should be approved soon, and PLM will apply the first of two treatments as soon as that comes back. They are hoping to have this applied late July – early August.
On Thursday, July 14 (weather permitting) (**Note, date change from original July 11 date), PLM will be out on our lake to perform another survey and they plan on treating that same day. They will be surveying the entire lakeshore and treating any invasive species they find. We are aware of Eurasian Milfoil sprouting in areas that were not treated earlier this season, as well as algae in Fenner’s Ditch.
At our June meeting, the Board approved a special treatment in Fenner’s Ditch to hopefully help the algae situation. This requires three treatments, at a total expense of about $7,000. The permit was submitted to EGLE on June 22, and it takes about 30 days to process. This will be using a product called Phoslock, which binds to the phosphorus in the water and sinks it to the bottom (similar to alum). For more details, this is the product website: https://sepro.com/aquatics/phoslock. Also, here is the PLM proposal for this treatment (link). We hope PLM will be able to apply the 1st of 3 treatments in late July or early August. Until then, it will be treated with algaecide each time PLM is out on the lake. If this provides good results, we will look to continue this next season, but start the treatments earlier in the season.
As a reminder, we have a new Lake Treatment protocol in place that allows our Chair to approve treatments up to a certain budget without needing to wait for approval at our next board meeting, greatly speeding the process. If you have anything concerning on your waterfront, feel free to email a photo and description of your issue to Darrell, Paul, or Craig. Their contact information can be found on our website at http://www.bllb.org/people/.