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Bathymetric Mapping: An Overlooked Component of Lake Management

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Dec 13, 2018

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Written by Industry Expert Matthew Salem, Permit Coordinator and GIS Specialist

As we power through the holidays, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle. But before we enter the new year, it’s important to reflect upon our successes and make plans to achieve bigger and better goals. If you own or manage a lake or pond, your goals may include improving aesthetics, enhancing water quality and strengthening the health of your aquatic ecosystem. While many of the strategies used to achieve these goals are implemented in the spring and summer, it’s never too early to get started. In fact, one beneficial and often overlooked tool is lake mapping—and now is the perfect time of year to utilize it!

What is lake mapping?

Lake mapping, or bathymetry, involves the measurements of water depth, volume and amount of collected sediment on the bottom of a waterbody. These parameters can reveal quite a lot about

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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry, Pond Management Best Practices

Which Dredging or Sediment Removal Option Is Best for My Waterbody?

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Nov 14, 2018

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Written by Industry Expert Lance Dohman, Regional Manager 

Virtually all explanations of dredging include the physical scooping up of underwater sand and clay sediments to enhance a merchant ship’s access to a port or waterway. If these waterways become inaccessible, the economic consequences are far reaching.

Today, however, massive algal blooms, animal fatalities from toxic byproducts of algae and the spread of invasive plants and animals are sharing the front-page news with national economic interests. For those of us living on a waterbody, it’s clear that our personal economic interests are rewarded via higher property values if the nearby water is both navigable and healthy. As a waterbody ages and becomes “silted-in,” organic nutrients fuel invasive plant and algae growth, and property owners suffer the consequences of bright green water, fish kills and dangerous swimming conditions. Unfortunately, the solution to these rampant biological problems involves

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Topics: Pond Management Best Practices, Aquatics in Brief Newsletters

The Importance of Understanding Your Watershed

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Oct 25, 2018

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Written by Industry Expert Greg Blackham, Aquatic Specialist

Did you know that everyone on this planet lives in a watershed? A watershed, defined, is any amount of land that collects water through precipitation and transports it to a common outlet. That common outlet could be a stream, river, reservoir, lake or even a large bay like the Chesapeake Bay. A watershed is simply a term used to describe a transitional downhill area that water collects and flows through to reach its destination, including groundwater. The topography of the land, through elevated ridges, outlines the edge of each watershed, and small sub-watersheds can combine to form larger watersheds. Everything we do affects our watershed and our watershed affects the quality of all life within it and beyond, which makes it critically important to understand our impact on surrounding freshwater ecosystems.

Water traveling through the watershed is altered in numerous ways throughout its journey. Surface runoff, creeks and ditches pick up all types of organic and inorganic materials. Harmful

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Topics: Pond Management Best Practices, Water Quality/Nutrient Remediation

What Exactly Is Stormwater Runoff?

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Oct 09, 2018

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Written by Industry Expert Jason Luce, Lake Management Scientist

Have you ever wondered what happens to a single drop of water when it rains? Depending upon where you live, that drop of water may land on the ground and seep into the soil or it may land on a leaf and evaporate back into the atmosphere. But, if you live in a developed area such as a city or HOA community, the fate of that droplet of water may be a rooftop, sidewalk or road and eventually a lake or stormwater pond. As development increases, so does stormwater runoff. Stormwater runoff is the portion of rainfall or snowmelt that “runs off” the landscape instead of seeping into the ground. When managed incorrectly, stormwater runoff can become a major problem.

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Topics: Stormwater BMPs, Pond Management Best Practices

Misconceptions About Lake & Pond Nutrients

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Oct 01, 2018

Lake Management

Written by Erin Stewart, Territory Leader & Aquatic Biologist

Nutrients are required for all living things to survive. They are metabolized for energy or fuel so organisms can develop and grow. The nutrients humans and animals need are provided by the food we eat. When food is consumed and digested, it provides the fuel to synthesize or produce direct energy. Similarly, plants take up the nutrients they need from soil and the atmosphere through roots and leaves. In lakes and ponds, these nutrients are found suspended in the water and within bottom sediments. Aquatic plants absorb nutrients through roots down in the sediments or leaves. Submerged plants also absorb (CO2) from the water and sunlight that penetrates below the water surface.

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Topics: Pond Management Best Practices, Aquatic Weeds and Algae

Hydro-raking 101: FAQs About Restoring Water & Prolonging Dredging

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Sep 25, 2018

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Everything ages with time. When it comes to your lake or pond, time can take a toll on its health and functionality. Over the lifespan of your waterbody, sediment and organic matter will accumulate, nuisance plants will flourish, water quality will diminish and water depth will decrease. Luckily, you can reverse the aging process and help restore your waterbody back to health with one environmentally-friendly management tool: hydro-raking.

Are you curious whether this is the management solution for you? Below are some of the most popular questions from our recent hydro-raking webinar hosted by industry experts Joe Onorato, Aquatic Specialist & Business Development Consultant; Jeff Castellani, Director of Mechanical Operations and Keith Gazaille, Aquatic Ecologist & Director of Lake Management for the North and Mid-Atlantic.

If you missed the webinar, you can watch a full recording here


Is hydro-raking a good option for removing the following aquatic plants: milfoil, waterlilies, cattails and hydrilla?

Like any other aquatic plant management technique, there are situations that favor or limit the use of hydro-raking as an effective tool. It’s important

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Topics: Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Pond Management Best Practices

FAPQ: Frequently Asked Pond Questions

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Aug 27, 2018

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Whether your waterbody is a stormwater management facility constructed for nutrient removal and flood mitigation, an irrigation or livestock pond, or an amenity feature created for recreation, there are many ecological problems that can affect the health and appearance of the pond and its suitability for the intended water use. Below are answers to some commonly asked questions about pond and lake management.

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Topics: Pond Management Best Practices, Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Water Quality/Nutrient Remediation

7 Tips to Prevent Harmful Algal Blooms in Your Community’s Waterbodies

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Aug 14, 2018

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A common issue that many communities experience is the growth of pond algae in lakes and ponds used for recreation and drinking water. In community waterbodies, moderate amounts of algae can often signify the waterbody is in good health, but excess algae levels may indicate that the natural balance of the ecosystem has been compromised. Without swift and proper management, certain species of algae, like cyanobacteria, can begin producing harmful toxins.

Following exposure or digestion of these toxins, humans and animals can experience skin rashes, liver and kidney toxicity, nervous system problems, respiratory complications and even death. Exposure to cyanobacteria also has suspected links to degenerative diseases like ALS, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

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Topics: Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Pond Management Best Practices

Fertilizer in Your Pond: Managing Nutrients to Change the Game

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Aug 01, 2018

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Written by Industry Expert Matthew Ward, Fisheries Biologist

If you own or manage a body of water long enough, you will experience invasive vegetation and algae growth. This growth can be associated with bad smells and dead fish, converting an otherwise pristine waterbody into an ugly mess. Often, a manager’s first reaction is to identify the intruder, apply a fast-acting herbicide/algaecide and wash their hands of the matter. This strategy may work for a while, but unfortunately, growth returns time after time. Managers can eventually enter a cycle where the frequency and severity of invasive growth begins to climb out of control along with expenses. Enter Integrated Pest Management (IPM). IPM considers biological, mechanical and chemical controls alongside adjustments in cultural practices, enabling us to treat the problem, not just the symptoms.

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Topics: Pond Management Best Practices, Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Water Quality/Nutrient Remediation

6 Tips to Reduce Nuisance Mosquitoes & Disease in Your Community

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Jul 02, 2018

Mosquitoes

Summer is typically the time when communities, associations and property owners get the most out of their lakes, ponds and wetland ecosystems, but pesky mosquitoes can interrupt recreational activities and overall enjoyment of the outdoors. In addition to being a nuisance, mosquitoes can carry debilitating diseases, including Zika, Eastern Equine Encephalitis and West Nile Virus, which is the most widespread and deadly, reported in 47 states and claiming more than 100 lives last year. Though mainstream media attention has shifted away from mosquito-borne diseases since the Zika scare of 2015-16, these viruses are still transmitted throughout the country.

"Mosquitoes are a threat to communities in many ways” SOLitude Lake Management’s President Marc Bellaud said. “It’s critical for municipalities, landowners and associations to understand and implement preventative management strategies that are effective and well as safe for residents and the environment.”

To protect community members and limit mosquitoes around your waterbody this summer, SOLitude Lake Management recommends the following preventative tips:

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Topics: Mosquito and Pest Control, Pond Management Best Practices

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