Lake Currents – Spring/Summer 2017

by | Jun 5, 2017 | Newsletter | 0 comments

Dear Fellow Groton Lakes Association Members And Friends,

The Groton Lakes Association (GLA) placed the boards in the dam April 1st and the lake filled to summer pool level within one week due to the unusual rainfall we have had this spring. In fact, a board had to be taken out and remains out of the dam as the period of wet weather has continued through May. The good news is the severe drought is over in Massachusetts, however, we must remain mindful of the danger of fire in the forests around us. An errant cigarette butt casually thrown out of a window could start a devastating fire, a carelessly attended, open fire to burn branches could also lead to disaster. Please try to be mindful and use commonsense to protect our environment and property.

Fireworks not only disturb people and their pets, but as demonstrated last July 4th set the woods ablaze in a difficult to access area. Fireworks are illegal in Massachusetts and the Groton police will be enforcing these laws. Please be considerate of your neighbors remember the danger to our woods and homes.

Spot treatment of Weeds 2017
We will be continually plagued by regrowth of invasive weeds and only spot treating will hold them in check. Over the past two years this has proved a successful way to manage remaining troublesome pockets of invasive weeds. Our contractor, Solitude, recently surveyed Lost Lake/ Knops Pond to identify where treatment will be most needed this season The good news is the variable milfoil has been kept in check in most areas and only one area of fanwort (the dreaded cabomba) was found in the cove where Martins Pond Brook enters the lake. The bad news is that another invasive, curly leaf pondweed being an opportunistic plant, has become the dominant plant in the shallow areas around and near the shoreline. It will be the main target of spot treatment on June 12th. The cost of treatment will have to be borne be residents as the Town is not able afford annual treatments. A membership letter will be sent very soon. We need your help in funding this effort. We have expended all the money received from the Town in 2013. Treatment will cost upwards of $25,000 per year. If we fail to treat, the weed growth will overwhelm the lake once again. Please be as generous as you can afford to keep our lakes clear and safe.

Treatment this year will occur on June 12th. The GLA will post notices around the lake in areas that require treatment. If you would like to volunteer to post, please contact Brad Harper.

May 2017 Density and Distribution of Fanwort

May 2017 Density and Distribution of Curly-leaf Pondweed

May 2017 Density and Distribution of Variable Watermilfoil

Porta Potties Placed at Boat Launches
Handicapped accessible comfort stations were installed at the boat launches at Lost Lake and Baddacook Pond to provide for visitors to each lake. Permission was obtained from the State to place these facilities. They will be in place from May through September. We hope this will eliminate the problems that have been observed at these sites.

Baby Beach Eagle Scout Project
A local Boy Scout took up the challenge to stop a stormwater run-off problem at this favorite lake site. Andrew Wilson raised monies and voluntary donations of materials to conduct this project. He received generous help and advice from Bob Pine, Savas Danos, Groton’s DPW, Josh Degen, Groton’s Friends of the Trees, and the Mountain Lakes Club. The approach to the beach was graded to provide an improved access for emergency vehicles and improved flow of run-off into two rain gardens which have been planted with a variety of plants. The costs were minimal and the project is a good demonstration of how each of us can tackle similar run-off problems on our own properties. Thank you Andrew for your efforts.

Baddacook Pond Project
This summer a weed removal proposal, funded by CPC and passed at recent Town meeting, will begin. A combination of aggressive weed harvesting and hydroraking partially funded by the GLA and the Water Department will attempt to clear floating islands and a heavy infestation in a portion of the pond. This is the first year of a three year program. The goal is to clear some of the floating islands composed of muck and invasive weeds from the ponds and compost them at the DPW site.

In addition, weed harvesting will be repeatedly applied to the fanwort and milfoil infestations in the littoral (shallow) areas along the edges of the pond. The consultant says that repeated harvesting can rob the plants of their nutrients and inhibit their growth. This effort is a trial program to be evaluated as it progresses. It represents a compromise effort between the great Ponds Advisory Committee and the Water Department who are opposed to treating Baddacook with herbicides. Thanks have to go to Jim Luening, Bill Strickland, Jack McCafferty and others for working very hard to bring this program on line.
Sargisson Beach

The town’s financial situation was precarious this spring, but hard work by many, including Art Prest, a member of the Finance Committee, has funded lifeguards at Sargisson once more. The piers are out, the spring beach clean-up accomplished and the beach opened this past weekend. Thanks to all who participated in this project.

Duck Pond Study
Last year, our neighbors who live on Duck Pond noted how low the water level was and asked for help from the Great Ponds Advisory Committee (GPAC). GPAC agreed to fund a survey of the pond by Solitude. This was done in May of 2017. We are awaiting the final written report.

Undoubtedly, the severe drought contributed to the low water level. There is no significant inlet resupplying this pond as well. Also, it is tied to any drawdown of Knops Pond as has been observed over the years. Knops Pond was down due to drought as well last year.

Have a great summer on our lakes.

-Alex