Written by: Sam Sardes, Weed Science Director, Certified Lake Professional
Summer brings beautiful weather for most of the country, but with the joys of warmer temperatures, we should prepare for our six-legged, winged friends: midges. Midges are an important part of the aquatic food web as many fish rely on them as a primary food source. However, too much of a good thing leads to midges ruining our poolside sunbathing, cookouts and other outdoor activities which is why it’s important to proactively manage their arrival.
Midges thrive near freshwater resources because their life cycle must occur in water. They are adept at prospering in challenging conditions including murky, nutrient-rich water and lakes and ponds with low dissolved oxygen levels. While 1,000 larvae per square meter is considered the threshold for nuisance levels, poorly-managed waterbodies can be found with more than 40,000 larvae per square meter.
Proactive Lake and Pond Management Tips to Help Manage Midges:
1. Install a submersed aeration system to increase low dissolved oxygen levels in your waterbody. This promotes a healthy aquatic habitat for fish species that feed on midge fly larva.
2. Utilize nutrient remediation technologies that reduce organic buildup in lakes and ponds. Midge flies feed on decaying organic material!
3. Stock native fish species like Bluegill and Redear that naturally feed on midge fly larva to keep midge growth at bay.
4. Cultivate a healthy shoreline of native plants, which provide habitat for many midge predators, like dragonflies and amphibians.
Overall, it is our goal to manage nuisance populations of midge flies, not to completely eradicate them. Eradication would leave the food web unbalanced and could have negative effects on your aquatic resource. The same goes for mosquitoes, though the management strategies differ compared to midges, they can still be managed in a safe and sound way so no harm is done to the environment. Let our aquatic management professionals plan a proactive midge or mosquito management program so you and your family can enjoy your time in and around your waterbody.
Contact the experts at 888-480-LAKE (5253) for all of your lake, pond, wetland and fisheries management needs.SOLitude Lake Management is an environmental firm committed to providing full-service solutions that improve water quality, preserve natural resources, and reduce our environmental footprint. Our services include lake, pond, wetland and fisheries management programs, algae and aquatic weed control, mechanical harvesting, hydro-raking, installation and maintenance of fountains and aeration systems, water quality testing and restoration, bathymetry, lake vegetation studies, biological assessments, habitat assessments, invasive species management and nuisance wildlife management. Services, consulting and aquatic products are available to clients nationwide, including homeowners associations, multi-family and apartment communities, golf courses, commercial developments, ranches, private landowners, reservoirs, recreational and public lakes, municipalities, parks, and state and federal agencies. Learn more about SOLitude Lake Management and purchase products at www.solitudelakemanagement.com