Plankton (microscopic free floating organisms) are a very important aspect of the ecology of the lakes within the Glen Lake/Crystal River Watershed. This video highlights the method by which the plankton are collected in our lakes using a plankton net along with locations in our watershed where we collect the plankton and how often they are collected. The plankton samples are analyzed in the laboratory using a compound microscope. We especially look for a rich biodiversity and whether we are encountering any invasive species. This video features Laura Wiesen and Rob Karner as the plankton peeps who do the collecting and analyzing.
Ever wonder what determines the water level of Glen Lake and consequently the water flow in the Crystal River? If so, read on. The next few paragraphs will briefly outline where the water comes from, where it goes, and the management plan philosophy we have developed to serve the Glen Lake-Crystal River community.
The water comes from the precipitation we receive throughout the year in the form of rain and snow. It finds its way into the lake two different ways: directly from the sky and through the surrounding area which is called the Glen Lake watershed. The water that flows in from the surrounding streams and underground springs (predominantly located along the East and South shores of Big Glen) contributes significantly, but water seeps in from all the hills and lands surrounding the lake. This watershed rain and snow melt filters through the surrounding properties, lawns, and forests down through the sand and gravel into the lake. Fortunately this filtration has a significant time lag so we continue to have water coming into the lake during the dry weeks of the summer. Something to keep in mind is that any chemicals, fertilizers, fuels, or septage that is spread, spilled or buried in the watershed eventually makes its way into the lakes too. So the importance of keeping ground and streams clean is obvious.
Stewardship plays a critical and grassroots role for protecting the Glen Lake/Crystal River Watershed. Doing the right thing for the lake is not always followed for a variety of reasons. In this video, the Glen Lake Association has recognized the Lymans’ home on the east shore of Big Glen as being careful to be ecologically respectful for not only their landscaping, but building their house as a LEED certified home. As you will see, the Lymans are passionate about protecting the water and setting a great example for all of us to follow that sets the stage now and for future generations that living on the shoreline has its rewards and its responsibilities. If you want more information about living in harmony with nature and protecting the water of Glen Lake, please contact the association and we will be happy to help you accomplish our common goal.