Water Quality and The Environment of Mary Lake
Water quality is one of the big draws to our Mary Lake Paradise. Vigilant attention to monitoring programs and asking questions when unusual conditions or biological activity occurs is our common responsibility.
This summer a number of you have reported a green stringy slime around parts of our shoreline even when the water has been so cold this summer. One expert has suggested our algae is cladophora. We are asking the experts for more information and will let you know what they tell us.
Results of the Loon SurveyJuly 2013
Your best source for up to date Information on Mary Lake and other area lake monitoring programs is:
Benthic Monitorying 2016 new
Jane Earthy's MNR Report
Lake Partners new
Muskoka Watershed Report 2016
University of Waterloo Mary Lake Study September 2013
Fish In The Lake
Recommendations from The Freshwater SummitJune 2010
1) Lake Data/Muskoka Data/Biological Monitoring Data/Huntsville for our benthic(bugs in the mud) Counting and identifying nearshore creatures provides us with an excellent early warning of threats to our water quality. Each year a survey is done.
2) Lake Data/Lake Partner Program (Jane Earthy Program) gives you all our Mary Lake Secchi(clarity) results and our Total Phosphorus readings for nutrient loading.We have been participating since 2002
by collecting a water sample for total phosphorus after the spring freshette in May and sending it
to Dorset. Every few weeks during the summer we drop a Secchi disc down into the water over the deep basin north of Crown Island and measure when it disappears to get our clarity readings.
3)Lake System Health/Monitoring Your Lake/EMAN/Ice watch is where our full year resident volunteers will register Mary Lake to track when the ice comes on and off the lake. They have data back to 1987.
4) Lake System Health/Monitoring Your Lake/Terrestrial Plot Monitoring will be the place
we reestablish our 20m by 20m plot of forest on top of Rocky Island that was first measured
in 2003. Unfortunately a wind event in September,2006 took out the north side and we need
professional expertise to set it up again.
Other Mary Lake water quality initiatives are:
5)Well Aware and drinking water testing. You heard from “Well Aware” at our AGM and in the
past we have had Jim Steele of Jim’s Pump Shop speak to us about up to date UV
lights filter systems reminding us of the importance of regular sampling through the public
health testing service that should be done until you get three perfect 0 coliform and 0 e-coli results each summer.
6)DOCKTALK: promotes natural shoreline buffers, septic care & maintenance.FOCA supplies materials
to educate us and our neighbours about best practices around the water. Some of our members have
signed up for private site visits with a biotechnician. Lake friendly products are encouraged and we are constantly reminding ourselves of our stewardship responsibility to avoid phosphates, fertilizers and to follow the “GO WILD” philosophy.
This year we welcome the aid of our new directors to attend as many meetings, lectures and workshops
as we can to keep up to date on what makes a merrier Mary. Please set aside some time to use the
water web to learn as much as you can about how we can all be better lake stewards in our local paradise.
7) Canada Geese There is serious concern about goose droppings on the Port Sydney Beach as well as along cottage shorelines. Your association is working on strategies to control this. The best strategy, since geese like grass, is to leave your shoreline in a natural state. Watch for more information at the AGM.