by chip wendler – vice president
The Moose Pond Association (MPA) was established in 2008 to protect the lake that we love. Since the very first day, the MPA board has partnered with the Lake Environmental Association (LEA) to monitor the health of Moose Pond and encourage activities to help improve the health of the lake over time for the enjoyment of all for generations to come.
While our partnership with LEA to staff the Courtesy Boat Inspector program is very visible and relatively well known by most MPA members, other important programs – such as the annual Invasive Plant Survey, Water Quality testing and periodic surveys of the watershed area surrounding the lake – are equally important but less visible and familiar to many.
For example, each year the MPA board works with the LEA to identify high risk areas of the lake that are potential breeding grounds for invasive aquatic plants such as variable leaf milfoil. Most often, these areas are in shallow high-traffic areas such as launch sights and marinas where transient boaters may frequent. This year, on August 6, four members of the LEA team slipped on their wet suits and surveyed six key locations of concern including the Route 302 boat launch ramp, the Denmark boat launch ramp, the narrows between the middle and lower basins, as well as the Lakeside, Alpine Village and Knights Hill community docks. Fortunately, no invasive species were discovered.
Another important activity that takes place annually and throughout the summer is water quality testing. You may have driven by LEA sight marker buoys without even thinking twice about why these floating white posts are present in each basin. Several times during the summer, members of the LEA testing team motor out to these locations test for phosphate and chlorophyll levels as well as water clarity. Over time, we will be able to accumulate enough data to spot year-over-year trends as well as the impact of both our protection and remediation activities.
Every eight to 10 years, the MPA works with the LEA and several state agencies to conduct a survey of the watershed land surrounding Moose Pond. The goal of the survey is to identify erosion sites on roads, properties, driveways and trails where lack of ground cover and poor drainage systems can allow excess – and often phosphate-laden – run off to enter Moose Pond. With the help of several dozen volunteers, we conducted this year’s watershed survey in mid-May. More than 95 erosion sites were identified and approximately 65% of these problem sites allowed unhelpful run off to directly enter our lake. The MPA plans to contact these property owners in the early spring to suggest potential remediation steps and, if necessary, will be able to offer financial incentives to help pay for the projects and encourage the completion of these important projects.
It is your annual financial support of the MPA that allows us to fund these important activities. The MPA board would like to thank all of the members for their ongoing generosity. Please encourage your friends and neighbors to join the MPA if they are not already involved.