Phosphorous, along with nitrogen, is an essential nutrient for plants and animals. As a major component in most fertilizers, runoff or erosion can lead to too much phosphorous in the water, and the depletion of oxygen from excessive aquatic growth. Called eutrophication, it can result in animal die-off , toxins and foul water. Therefore the monitoring of phosphate levels in water is extremely important.
The Glen Lake Association collects water samples every spring and fall and sends them to Lansing where they are tested for phosphorous levels which are then compared with other lakes in the State of Michigan. This provides the GLA with valuable and comparable data for our water quality monitoring program.
GLA is currently undergoing new research to help find ways to control swimmer’s itch. In this picture, you can see Ron Reimink of Freshwater Solutions, LLC, working on a tree cavity found in an old broken oak tree on Big Glen. He is using a long telescopic pole with a GoPro video camera at the end to “look into” the possible nesting site of a female Common Merganser. GLA is in the process of monitoring several possible nest sites and the full result of this effort will be reported at a later time. Remember, the key to controlling swimmer’s itch is to try and limit the number of merganser broods that come to our lake in FUTURE years. Also, remember that it is against the law and federal fines could be imposed if anyone harms this bird or her eggs during the nesting season. If you feel you have a potential nesting cavity or better yet, see a merganser fly in or out of a tree cavity, please email Rob Karner at: firstname.lastname@example.org and he will follow up on your sightings.
The Glen Lake Association is experimenting with drone technology to combat swimmer’s itch. The objective is to locate common merganser nest cavities in the trees so we can learn more about their natural history that might give us a better handle on controlling their populations and thus reducing swimmer’s itch. GLA has partnered with Zero Gravity LLC and are finding that with drones, we can get a “bird’s eye view” of the forest and better analyze where nest cavities might be located. So far, we are making modest progress. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact Rob Karner email@example.com.