WATERSHED WORK & WISDOM MAY & JUNE, 2010

WATERSHED WORK & WISDOM

MAY & JUNE, 2010


SAVE THESE DATES:

·      June 26.     Off Your Dock!! starts. Our new summer lake sampling project. Volunteers needed.

·      August.   Public comment period on Maryland Department of Environment draft report on phosphorous impairment at DCL.

·      August 7    SPECIAL EVENT-– State of the Lake Forum sponsored by Friends of Deep Creek Lake.


OFF YOUR DOCK!!

We are looking for volunteers to sample lake turbidity from their dock. Turbidity is the suspended sediment in the water from stream run off and shoreline erosion. We seek volunteers from a couple docks in each cove and others areas around the lake.

Why?  No research is being done in the “near shore” zone– shoreline to 100 feet out. Yet, this is where we spend most of our recreational time.

Specifics: We will provide equipment and training– starting on June 26. We need samples taken twice a week, and, if you have to be away, we can take the samples for you.

To volunteer: Email us at contact@friendsofdcl.orgcall (301) 873-1519; or write to 779 Chadderton School Rd, Oakland MD 21550.               

Donate funds so we can purchase the needed equipment.              

                Basic kit: $45–secchi disk to measure turbidity and special purpose thermometer for water temperature.

                            Complete kit: $115 –basic kit plus view tube for monitoring accuracy and turbidity tube to collect build-up of sediment.

                           

MDE 2010 TMDL Study.

              Under the federal Clean Water Act, Maryland Department of Environment assesses bodies of state waters for problems. These     studies are called Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) reports.

              Previous studies have found the lake impaired for high pH levels from runoff from abandoned coal mines, which has been addressed by the dowser in Cherry Creek and for mercury from air born sources.

              MDE is conducting a TMDL study on phosphorous in the DCL watershed. High levels of phosphorous release other nutrients intthe water, which results in massive growths of Submerged Aquatic Vegetation, algal blooms and water quality decline.

              Next steps: By mid-August, MDE will release its TMDL report. There will be a public comment period on the draft report and a public meeting. Friends of Deep Creek Lake will inform the public when about the report and the public meeting. There will be a presentation on the TMDL report at our Forum.

 

SPECIAL EVENT:  Forum on the State of the Lake, August 7. Sponsored by Friends of Deep Creek Lake.

 

              Our community forum is underwritten in part by funds from the Chesapeake Bay Trust and is the focal point of our work with the               University of Maryland, Center for Environmental Studies/EcoCheck. A Report Card on the lake will be forthcoming in the fall.

 

              On the agenda:

l        Dr Kelsey from EcoCheck will present an assessment of the state of the lake and tributaries drawing from existing research.

l        Tim Rule and other MDE staff will discuss the draft TMDL report.

l        Lee Karrh from DNR will be on hand to cover mapping of Submerged Aquatic Vegetation.

 

 

MEETINGS OF INTEREST:

l        6/26.  Property Owners Association meeting. 9 am, Garrett Cinema.

l        7/12. Policy and Review Board meeting. 6 pm, Discovery Center.

 

ONGOING ORGANIZATIONAL WORK

Dredging. Responding to our request last winter, DNR is working on a DCL dredging plan. We will have more information on this work within the month. We need a Plan prior to seeking funds from the state Waterway Improvement Fund. The existing Lake Management Plan requires property owners pay for dredging of this State-owned lake, a policy which we maintain is unfair.

Vista VolunteerMike Stanton started work with Friends of Deep Creek Lake in mid-May as a VISTA Volunteer. He is working to develop various database management systems which will be helpful to us.

Outreach and education.

l        House meetingsWe have found house meetings to be the best way to share our work and learn of concerns of property owners. Three meetings are scheduled– Hickory Lane, Hickory Ridge and Turkey Neck Loop– and our goal is at least 6 more this summer. If you are interested in hosting such a meeting, please contact us.

l        Outreach and Door to Door CanvasGarrett College students, Kayla Hartung and Jeff Sidebottom, have signed on to do community outreach work this summer. They will be appearing at special events, regular gatherings like the Farmers’ Market, and may even knock on your door! They have received very positive response and talked with hundreds of people about our work already.

l        Fundraising.  We have raised over $5,000 this year in cash and in-kind donations but need $5,500 just to pay our share of the VISTA salary. The Business Friends campaign starts later in the summer.

l        Proposals. We have a request in to Brookfield Renewable Power, owners of the DCL dam, to fund a Watershed Stewardship Trail. We would highlight sites where owners have adopted good watershed protections practices. We have met some fabulous stewards, including Mr. and Mrs. Sunny, farmers on Steiding Church Road. Their farm stream is a tributary to DCL and has clean water, alive with macro-invertebrates. Thank you for your stewardship!!



 

ALERT

UNWANTED SPECIES IN

THE LAKE WATERSHED

 

Crayfish

 

Virile Crayfish:

A red-shelled crayfish. Much larger and more aggressive than native species. They will reduce diversity and abundance of native aquatic plants, insect larvae, mussels, snails, frogs, turtles, and native crayfish. They will become the dominant crayfish.

 

If seen: Remove and destroy (or steam and eat).

Eurasian Watermilfoil:

This plant has slender stems and feathery leaves. It forms a dense canopy that shades out native aquatic plants, reduces fish habitat, and reduces recreational use. Reproducing by fragmentation, it is easily spread by boats, trailers, or bait buckets.

 

If seen: Pull whole plant with roots from lake bottom. Bag and destroy.

 

 

 

 

 

Pondweed:

This plant has oval floating leaves. Growth is caused by high nutrient levels and runoff from pastures, lawns, and septic systems. Massive beds support algal blooms, stunt beneficial submerged aquatic vegetation, create dead zones, nasty odor and causes fish kills.

 

If seen: Pull or rake plants before blooming in mid to late July. Remove dead plants from beaches in late summer.

HELP STOP SPREAD OF THESE SPECIES IN THE DEEP CREEK LAKE WATERSHED

l        Report sightings to Friends of Deep Creek Lake: contact@friendsofdcl.org or call 301-873-1519.

l        Reduce nutrient runoff on your property. Report other pollution entering tributaries and the lake.

l        Check your boat to be sure you are not bringing in or distributing any unwanted species in the lake.

l        Actively support watershed protection efforts by volunteering and donating of these groups.

Barbara Beelar
About the Author
Director Friends of Deep Creek Lake, founded in 2008. Barbara first came to deep creek lake in 1949. Master degrees in Latin American Studies from University of North Carolina and City Planning from MIT.