Proactive Lake Management

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How to Proactively Manage Your Waterbody

From the moment they are formed, lakes and ponds begin to age. This process is called eutrophication, and the rate at which a waterbody ages is dependent on many factors, including plant and algae growth, erosion and nutrient pollution. If these factors are not managed correctly, the lake or pond will eventually fill with sediment until it becomes no more than a puddle. Fortunately, many proactive solutions can help reduce these water quality issues and extend the lifespan of your waterbody. A professional lake management company can help you develop a personalized plan that meets your specific goal – whether it’s cultivating a trophy fishery, a beautiful community pond or a recreational lake to use for boating and swimming.

Conduct Water Quality Testing

Often, the first step when developing a proactive management plan is to test the water. Water quality testing helps establish a management baseline by revealing nutrient levels, dissolved oxygen, pH, algae and bacteria species, and other unique parameters. Much like lab tests performed by a doctor, water quality tests will identify potential areas of concern and allow our aquatic experts to create a treatment plan that enhances the overall health and beauty of the ecosystem. Testing at regular intervals will ensure your waterbody is on track to meet your goals and help keep future problems like bad odors, fish kills, toxic algae blooms, and invasive species infestations at bay.

Increase Dissolved Oxygen Levels with Aeration

Many problems that are identified through water quality testing can be prevented by improving dissolved oxygen levels. This can be achieved with the introduction of floating fountains or submersed diffused aerators, which are helpful in keeping mosquitoes at bay, reducing stagnant water, and preventing fish kills. Both solutions help introduce oxygen into the water column which helps balance nutrient levels. When nutrient levels are more balanced, water quality issues like algae and aquatic weeds are less likely to develop.

Establish A Beneficial Buffer

Lakes and ponds with extreme infestations of invasive plants and algae are likely suffering from excessive runoff. Runoff that occurs during rainstorms can bring all kinds of pollution into a lake or pond, including fertilizers from surrounding farms or landscaping, animal waste, grass clippings, and trash. These organic materials are rich in phosphorous, nitrogen, and other nutrients that are responsible for fueling undesirable plant growth and aging the waterbody. Cultivating a beneficial vegetative buffer from native plants and grasses can help prevent sedimentation and filter excess nutrients. Buffers should be allowed to grow 3-5 feet around the shoreline and trimmed annually.

Repair Eroded Shorelines

Waterbodies suffering from excessive (and potentially dangerous) shoreline erosion may further benefit from a bioengineered living shoreline. These systems are durable, aesthetically pleasing, and custom-designed to halt sedimentation and rebuild shorelines that have been degraded due to years of erosion.

Reducing Excess Nutrient Levels with Lanthanum Products

In addition to shoreline protection, the professional application of beneficial biological bacteria should be considered to limit the negative impact of nutrients. Biological augmentation can help process any excess organic materials naturally, rendering them unfit to fuel nuisance plant and algae growth. Biological bacteria help stabilize the foundation of the aquatic resource and promote the diversification of the ecosystem by encouraging “good” zooplankton and healthy fish.

Excess nutrients can also be alleviated by the application of unique lanthanum-modified clay. Lanthanum products can rapidly bind with free reactive nutrients like phosphorous and strip it from the water column. For stormwater ponds with extensive water movement, a natural phosphorus filtration product can be used to physically remove nutrients from the water.

Improve Water Quality and Clarity with Alum

Larger waterbodies looking to reduce excess nutrient levels like recreational lakes or drinking water reservoirs can benefit from alum applications. Alum binds with excess phosphorus and traps it in the bottom sediment. Not only does it remove phosphorus from the water column so it is no longer available for algae or weed growth, but it can also drastically improve water clarity.

This safe and effective water quality restoration tool has been utilized for over 60 years in the lake management industry and is endorsed by the North American Lake Management Society. Our experts have helped over 200 municipalities and lake associations restore their water quality.

Mechanically Remove Nuisance Vegetation

If plant growth has already overrun your lake or pond to the point that water visibility is limited, mechanical means may be necessary to proactively restore the waterbody. Hydro-raking is an effective tool for the sustainable removal of nuisance-rooted vegetation, tree limbs, and other debris. A mechanical hydro-rake is a floating pontoon or barge outfitted with a backhoe and rake attachments. The hydro-rake can be used to remove muck in water as shallow as 18 inches and in depths of up to 10 feet deep. Plants with well-developed root systems, like water lilies and cattails, can be significantly reduced for 2-3 years following a hydro-raking project. Most importantly, hydro-raking is an excellent tool to help extend the lifespan of a lake or pond without resorting to dredging, which is effective at restoring the depths of a waterbody, but is extremely costly.

Stay Ahead of Unsightly Water with Proactive Solutions

No matter the state of a lake or pond, it’s never too late to begin a proactive management plan to achieve your long-term waterbody goals. A professional lake manager will help you restore the natural balance of the ecosystem and work with you to slow the eutrophication process so your waterbody thrives—and looks beautiful—for years to come.

Discover the Benefits of Proactive Management

Contact Us to Build A Proactive Management Plan

Complete the form below or call 888.840.LAKE to get started with a proactive management plan that will keep your waterbody healthy, functional, and beautiful.

SOLitude Lake Management is committed to providing full servicelake and pond management 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

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