David Hodsdon and Jack Holland have resumed lake water quality monitoring as of last Friday, the 25th of April. This is about average- they like to get some data in April if at all possible. In addition to the regular secchi disk and dissolved oxygen data they also took a water sample for phosphorus testing. Jack didn’t have his boat in the water yet so I took them out in my boat. I took a few pictures; the wind was blowing about 10 miles an hour and it was pretty chilly! Official test results will be posted to the Clary Lake Water Monitoring Data page in a few days.
The phosphorus data is particularly important to collect but getting a water sample analyzed by the State costs $25 a pop. Because of the cost, David and Jack have taken only about 3 samples a year. We’re experimenting with a much cheaper do-it-yourself phosphorus test kit but the jury is still out on whether it will be sufficiently accurate to be useful. Monitoring phosphorus levels is important because it is a direct indicator of the likelihood of the lake experiencing an algae bloom. Most of you are aware that we’ve been having late summer/early fall algae blooms for the past 3 years in large part due to lower water levels. The picture at left shows dead blue-green algae floating on the surface last fall. You’ll find more pictures in the Fall 2013 album.
I’ll be filling in for David Hodsdon for a few months this summer while he’s on vacation and I’ve decided to get my Volunteer Water Monitor Certification as well.