March Lake George E-news
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M A R C H    2 0 1 2
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In this issue:
- 2011 Lake Stewards Report released
- Reminder: new 2012 Lawn Fertilizer Law now in effect
- More details on the phenomenal Beach Road reconstruction project
- LGA in the classroom
- Asian clam update
- Hold these dates
- Curious about something you've seen on the Lake?  Ask Georgie


 
LGA 2011 Lake Stewards Report Released
2011LakeStewardReportCoverThe 2011 Lake Steward program report is now available for download. (Complete and abridged versions are available.)

Since 2006, lake stewards have inspected boats at high traffic launches around the Lake and have educated boaters about invasive species spread prevention. The LGA’s 2011 report summarizes the data collected last year, and includes the number of boats inspected, the total number of animal and plant specimens removed, the identity and quantity of invasive species found, and the last waterbody boats visited prior to entering Lake George.


Over the 2011 season, the Lake George lake stewards interacted with 8,593 boats:
  • Within two weeks of their launch in Lake George, boaters had visited 193 unique waterbodies located in 15 different states.
  • Other than Lake George itself, the next most frequently visited waterbody was the Hudson River, a waterbody with 91 different invasive species; 100 boats inspected had been in the Hudson within two weeks prior to launch in Lake George.
  • Lake stewards collected 171 aquatic organism samples from 125 boats and trailers, and identified 87samples to be invasive species.
  • Four different species were found: Eurasian watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed, water chestnut and zebra mussels.
  • 75% of boaters said they followed spread-prevention procedures before launching in the Lake.
Reminder: New 2012 Lawn Fertilizer Law Now in Effect
PhosphorusFreeFertilizerBagJust a friendly reminder that the New York State Law regarding lawn fertilizer is now in effect. (In case you're eager to get out there and work on your lawn, since there's no snow covering it up!)

This new law:

  • Prohibits the use of phosphorus-containing lawn fertilizer unless establishing a new lawn or a soil test shows that the lawn does not have enough phosphorus.
  • Prohibits the application of lawn fertilizer on impervious surfaces and requires pick up of fertilizer applied or spilled onto impervious surfaces.
  • Prohibits the application of lawn fertilizer within 20 feet of any surface water except: where there is a vegetative buffer of at least 10 feet; or where the fertilizer is applied by a device with a spreader guard, deflector shield or drop spreader at least three feet from surface water
  • Prohibits the application of lawn fertilizer between December 1st and April 1st
  • Require retailers to display phosphorus containing fertilizers separately from non-phosphorus fertilizers and to post an educational sign where the phosphorus-containing fertilizers are displayed.

This provision DOES NOT impact agricultural fertilizer or fertilizer for gardens.
 

More Details on the Phenomenal Beach Road Reconstruction Project
BeachRoadSplashFeb2012
Into the nitty gritty?  The LGA issued a news release recently on the very exciting Beach Road porous asphalt project.  Construction is slated to begin in late spring. The release contains a comprehensive background document (see page 6) that provides more details on the project. Specifically, in this backgrounder you can find out:
  • What exactly is porous asphalt and what will be in the porous asphalt mixture used on Beach Road?
  • What layers will be under the asphalt?
  • How was the thickness of the asphalt determined?
  • Will the asphalt be able to withstand the high volume of traffic on the road?
  • Will ice and frost decrease the porous asphalt’s ability to absorb water?
  • What about freezing and thawing action – does that destroy porous asphalt?
  • Did the high water table present a unique challenge for the Beach Road porous asphalt project?
  • How long has this technology been around? Why hasn’t it been used a lot before?
  • How durable is it and what does it cost?
  • Is it true that porous asphalt requires less salt to remove ice and snow?
  • How does porous asphalt work to remove pollutants before they enter a waterbody?
  • Do these pavements look “different?” Are they smooth?
  • Are special construction techniques needed?
To find the answers... check out page 6 of our recent press release here.
 
LGA in the Classroom - Salmon Eggs and 3-D Watershed Models
Kristen with Watershed Model & LG Lake RangersThe Floating Classroom may be out of the water during the winter, but that doesn’t mean the LGA’s Education & Outreach efforts go on hiatus!

Recently, Kristen Rohne, the LGA's watershed educator shared our 3-D watershed model with students at Lake George Elementary School (pictured at right). The students belong to the Lake George Rangers, a club of 5th and 6th graders who meet after school weekly to examine the issues affecting the Lake George watershed.
 
It’s so important that everyone living in the Lake George watershed understand how crucial the entire watershed area is to protecting the water quality of Lake George,” says Kristen. The highest elevations of the mountains and hills surrounding Lake George form the boundaries of its watershed. You can imagine a watershed as an enormous funnel. As precipitation falls on the hillsides of this funnel, the funnel’s sides direct the water to the bottom – the Lake.
 
kristen putting fish in tankRelative to other waterbodies, Lake George has a small watershed; this is one of the key reasons why the Lake’s water has remained so clean and clear over the centuries. The majority of the water in Lake George comes directly off the land in the watershed through streams. Over 141 streams flow into Lake George, making up 55% of the water that enters the Lake.  Eight major streams are responsible for two-thirds of all stream flow entering the Lake: Northwest Bay Brook, Indian Brook, Hague Brook, West Brook, English Brook, Shelving Brook, Finkle Brook, and East Brook.  

Also, Kristen delivered salmon eggs to Janet Mallon’s life sciences class at Ticonderoga Middle School (pictured at left) and Eileen Toomey’s class at Whitehall High School. Both Whitehall and Ticonderoga are entering their second year of participation in the Salmon in the Classroom program.

 
Asian Clam Update
LGACRRTF logoThe 2011 spring and fall treatments were successful in knocking back the Asian clam population in Lake George, but we still have much work ahead of us in 2012 and future years to protect the Lake from this recent invader.  

The patchy distribution of clams within the sediments of the lake bottom makes accurately locating the clams and treating them challenging.

The Lake George Asian Clam Rapid Response Task Force is reviewing its progress from 2011 and making adjustments to protocols and methods for treatment plans for 2012 to improve effectiveness. Permits are being attained for treatments at all sites for both the spring and the fall.

A full report of the results from 2011 and the plans for 2012 is being put together by the task force. Funding is needed for this project to move forward in 2012 as planned.
The Warren County Occupancy Tax Committee has passed a resolution to provide $100,000 toward the 2012 effort.

Here's a specific update on each treatment site:

Lake George Village
Some areas in the Lake George Village site were cleared of clams, but a few clams remain in other areas. A smaller treatment effort of these remaining areas is being planned for 2012. The clams found off Lake Avenue Beach in the fall of 2010, and treated in the spring and again in the fall of 2011, as well as the small satellite population of clams found off Shepard Park Beach in the fall of 2011, and treated with mats in 2011, are being permitted for, and treated, as one large Lake George Village site in 2012. Extensive survey work will be done north of Shepard Park to determine if there are more clams in this area in between the two sites that were missed by prior surveys.

Middleworth Bay (Treasure Cove)
The suction dredging in the fall of 2011 in the cove on the north end of Middleworth Bay removed many clams, however initial results show that the method was unfortunately not as effective as we had hoped. The fine sediments in the bay were easily stirred up and made it very difficult to accurately see and clean the area of clams. We will be back at Middleworth Bay in the spring of 2012 with mats and are investigating a different method for suction harvesting that we hope will prove more accurate and reliable. Such targeted suction harvesting could also be used at other treatment sites as well in areas that are difficult to mat.

Norowal Marina
Initial results show good success at Norowal Marina from the fall of 2011 matting treatment. Follow-up mat treatments in the spring of 2012 are planned for a few areas where live clams remain, mainly under and around docks.
 
Boon Bay
Plans to begin treatment in the spring of 2012 for Boon Bay are underway with a likely combination of matting and suction harvesting. The requisite underwater archaeological survey at this site was completed last fall, but a permit still needs to be received to begin work at this site. This site is now the largest site, and will take a large amount of time and resources to treat this season.  

 
Hold These Dates for 2012

Lake-friendly Living OPEN HOUSE Graphic for Newsletter 2012Sat, June 2
2nd Annual Lake-friendly Living OPEN HOUSE
LGA Offices, 10 am - 2 pm, FREE
Meet vendors for native plants, permeable pavement, rain barrels, alternative septic systems and more


Fri, July 13
SUMMER SPLASH GALA
Inn at Erlowest, 6:30 pm
A benefit to protect Lake George. The sold-out event of the season. Accepting reservations and auction donations now.


Sat & Sun, August 11 & 12
1st CONFERENCE on Lake George & Lake Champlain
Fort Ticonderoga
LGA’s Emily DeBolt will present on Lake-friendly Landscaping


Fri, August 17
LGA 127th ANNUAL MEETING
Lake George Club
 
Ask Georgie
ASK GEORGIE LOGO LIKE LGA with snorkel copyWho knows more about Lake George than Georgie? He spends his days below the surface, and knows all about the Lake and how it works from the bottom up. 

Ever see something curious, awesome, beautiful or worrisome on the Lake and want to know more about it? E-mail Georgie – ask your questions and send your photos.  Look for answers here, in our print newsletter and online.
We haven't had much ice and snow this winter... even so, more will likely come.  (March is often our snowiest month.)  Check out recent posts on the LGA's Lake-friendly Living Blog for lake-friendly methods for snow and ice removal.

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