Lake Draw Down
We lowered the lake 4 1/2 feet from November 2012 until March 2013. Jennifer Jones of Restorative Lake Sciences is taking samples around the lake during the spring and summer to determine if the draw down was effective and if it will be utilized in future years.
Maple Lake South Basin and Turtle Cove
In April, 2010 we entered into a contract with Lake Savers for three years for an aeration system with microbes to try to reduce the silt in the south basin and the area known as "turtle cove" in the southeast area of the lake. Jennifer Jones will help us evaluate the effectiveness of the system to determine if we will continue or even expand the aeration system.
Weed Treatment for 2013
We treated four acres on June 4 for Eurasian milfoil. We have been treating for milfoil for the past few years with varying degrees of success due to the flow of the Paw Paw River thru the lake. In addition, Pond Weed Coontail was just below the surface in many areas by June 22. We decided to hold off the treatment until after the 4th of July weekend; unfortunately, the coontail came to the surface in heavy amounts from the south basin to the north end across the lake in many areas. On July 12 we treated 30 acres across the lake and 5 acres along the shoreline. Within two days the Pond Weed Coontail had been knocked down below the surface. The treatment will continue to inhibit the growth of the weed; hopefully for six to eight weeks. We have also been using the village harvester to reduce surface weeds in areas that have not been treated. Plans are also in the works to utilize a weed sucker treatment along the shoreline. This works like a vacuum to pull weeds out of the by the roots.
Don Welch from the Maple Lake Board and Jennifer Jones will survey the lake in the fall of 2013 to try to determine the effectiveness of our various treatments
I've been a member of the Maple Lake Association since 2005. The Maple Lake Association Weed Control Committee was headed by Dave Jones in 2005. The petition to improve the quality of Maple Lake and to create a Special Assessment District to collect funds to chemically control the weeds was taken up in 1998. In 2006, Mike Mearna and I took over for Dave Jones as the Weed Control Committee. The goals of the Weed Control Committee were always short-term control, that is, we wanted to keep the weeds off the top of the \Lake so motorboats and other water craft could enjoy the lake and control the weeds in front of people's property so the owners could enjoy the lake. We also treated for algae along the shoreline and the south end of the lake so it would not look like a swamp.
Prior to the year 2007, we treated about 75% of the shoreline with a product called "Reward", which is a contact herbicide - it only kills the part of the weed that it comes into contact with which is about 2 or 3 feet down - it does not kill the root so it does not destroy the plant completely. The two main weeds that are on top of the lake are Curly Leaf Pond Weed and Coon Tail - there are no chemicals allowed by the DEQ to be used to kill the root of the plant completely on these two weeds - the only treatment for these weeds is the use of "Reward" or mechanical harvesting. We would apply our first treatment in June when the weeds were starting to appear on top of the water - because it was a contact Herbicide, weeds would reappear at the top in 4-5 weeks and so we would have to apply a 2nd treatment in late-July or early August and because of our budget, we would not have enough money for a 3rd treatment. In late August, we would try to spot treat areas where it was really bad, mainly in areas down by the South end of the lake because of the Grape & Wine Festival - we wanted it to look as good as possible. Our budget also allowed us to have about 5 treatments for algae, which is a contact treatment too. We would spray for algae and it would destroy the algae on top of the water for about 10-14 days so then another treatment would be needed to keep the algae under control. In 2005, we were collecting $148.00 per property owner that lived on the lake so in 2006, our assessment was coming up for renewal. The Weed Committee and the Lake Association Board, decided that if we could increase the assessment to $198.00 per household, this would give us the additional money for a 3rd treatment and additional algae treatments. Starting in 2007 we began collecting $198.00 per household and we signed a contract with Professional Lake Management (PLM) providing them a budget of $20,000 per year to treat Maple Lake for 5 years. In 2007, we needed to treat more acres than we treated in 2006 along the shoreline. The price of the chemicals went up, as did the acreage we treated, so we did not have enough money to pay for the 3rd treatment and also could not keep up with the algae. Our lake survey in 2007 showed the Asian Milfoil was becoming more abundant and on top of the water so in 2008, the Asian Milfoil became the top priority. In 2008 and 2009 we did not treat for Curly Leaf Pond Weed or Coon Tail with "Reward". Also we stopped treatment for algae and used our total weed control budget for Asian Milfoil, in 2008 & 2009 we tried to control the Coon Tail and Pond Weed by using the Village of Paw Paw's mechanical harvester. We did this primarily with volunteers, but some cost to run the harvester in 2008 came out of the Lake Associations' dues fund. The cost for the 2009 running of the mechanical harvester was paid for out of money the Coca Cola Company donated to help with weed control.