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Free Phragmites Treatment

Your BLLB has partnered with the Muskegon Conservation District (MCD) to utilize grant funds for the treatment of highly invasive Phragmites in our area.  Reports of Phragmites in our area continue to rise.  Your BLLB has been treating Phragmites when found in the waters of Bear Lake, but we don’t have authority to treat above the waterline.

The Muskegon Conservation District is using grant funds to treat Phragmites on our shoreline and in shallow water they can reach from the shore.  This treatment is absolutely FREE, but it does require an Agreement Form with signature be returned to them prior to July 1, 2023 to give them permission to treat your property.

Please be on the lookout for the attached letter in the mail from the MCD, and fill out and return the agreement form.

Your BLLB have listened to comments from residents wanting partnerships with local organizations, as well as trying to find grant funds to save us money.  This partnership with the MCD is just the start!  If you ever want to find out more information on the BLLB, please check out our website at

Thank you,


Keep Leaves Out of the Lake

Several of our neighbors on the lake have contacted the BLLB with concerns over leaves being blown into Bear Lake with all the fall cleanup going on.  Please note, disposing of leaves or grass clippings in our lake is bad for the water which we are all working so hard to improve.  It is also illegal and is the same as going out into state land and dumping your garbage.

The BLLB is not an enforcement agency, but we do want to educate people on good lake management practices.  Attached is a flyer from the DEQ (now EGLE) on this subject, as well as a document from our Lake Management provider (PLM) on things we all can do to protect and improve the quality of our lake.

Please do not blow your leaves into the lake.  We know it is a lot of extra work, especially for those of us who have a steep incline, but it will improve the quality of the lake to properly compost.  Also, be sure to make sure any lawn contractors you have are aware that they should not be blowing leaves into the lake.

Thank you, and every little bit will help improve our water quality!

August 17 Treatment

Here is a map for where algae and invasive Milfoil were treated. Please note water use restrictions on the sign on your lakefront if you are in an area treated for Milfoil. Fenner’s Ditch also received it’s 2nd treatment of Phoslock. No water use restrictions for algae or Phoslock treatments.

August 11 Treatment Map

Here is the treatment map for where the lake was treated for invasive Starry Stonewort.

Survey and Treatment on Thursday August 11

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.

BLLB August Updates

  1. 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
  • 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 Special Treatment Update

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.

July Post Treatment Update

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.

Lake Treatment Updates

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:  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

2022 Newsletter Now Available!

The inaugural BLLB Newsletter is published and has been mailed to all Bear Lake property owners, to the address on file with the County for mailing of taxes and other mailings. You can also click on the image below to open the newsletter or find it in the Documents section of the website.