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Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society October 2008 Presidential TidBits Submitted by Lois Wolfson, President,

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Presentation on theme: "Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society October 2008 Presidential TidBits Submitted by Lois Wolfson, President,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society October 2008 Presidential TidBits Submitted by Lois Wolfson, President, McNALMS Invasive exotic species are one of the top pollutants of our nation’s surface waters. They often cause ecological damage by out competing native species, disrupting food webs, and in some cases decimating native populations. They also cause an economic upheaval as millions of dollars are spent on controlling them. Complete removal once they are established has not been successful. Zebra mussels invaded the Great Lakes in the late 1980s and have since spread to over 200 inland lakes in Michigan. Eurasian water milfoil which forms thick mats, crowds out native vegetation, and interferes with recreational activities such as swimming, fishing, and boating is most probably the number one aquatic plant problem in the state. Another invasive aquatic plant, Hydrilla has yet to find its way into the state, but it’s been found in Indiana, and experts say it’s not a matter of “if” Hydrilla will get here, but when. Can we continue managing these invasive species lake by lake or should we be taking a broader scale approach? Professor John Magnuson of the University of Wisconsin says in a recent published paper that …”large-scale, long- term drivers and associated extreme events are the rule rather than the exception.” His views on how we should be addressing invasive exotic species will be the focus of Michigan NALMS’ upcoming Fall luncheon, on October 31 in East Lansing, MI. His talk, “Do We Have to Manage for Exotics “One Lake at a Time?” will focus on taking a broader, landscape approach to protecting lakes from exotic species. His presentation will be followed by a presentation by Roger Eberhardt on the current status and needs of the Michigan exotic species management program, managed by the MDEQ Office of the Great Lakes. We’ll conclude the session with a focus on what Lake Board can do in managing exotic species. More details on the Luncheon can be found within this newsletter and on our new web site: Michigan is continually faced with challenges in the protection and management of our inland lakes. As I’ve stated in the past, the McNALMS Board solicits input from our members and always welcomes your active participation on one of our many committees. If you are interested in a particular issue or wish to become more involved, please contact us. Our joint efforts will be of great benefit in protecting and managing the inland waters of Michigan. -1- 1 Presidential TidBits 2Calendar of Events/Executive Director Notes 3Fall Luncheon Meeting 4Registration Form 5Nutrients May Cause More Problems than Just Weeds and Algae 6Update on Phosphorus Fertilizer Legislation & Roscommon County Ordinance 8McNALMS Membership Application

2 Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society Notes from the Executive Director Submitted by Howard Wandell McNALMS has a history of being an open and collaborative society. This includes the internal management of the Society. The Board of Directors meetings are open to the membership. The Board is interested in receiving comments and suggestions from the membership. The Society is small so resources are limited, but working collaboratively with other organizations and members we are able to accomplish much more. Board meetings for 2009 are planned for February, May, August and November. The exact date, time and location will be posted on the Society’s web site, If you would like to address the Board about a particular subject or just set in on a Board meeting please contact one of the Board members and your subject will be added to the meeting agenda and you will be added to the meal count. We hope you will feel welcome at our Board meetings, join us if you can. If you wish to contact us by letter or e-mail, please contact us at: Michigan NALMS PO BOX 4812 East Lansing, MI 48826 email: -2- McNALMS Calendar of Events Check Out Our New Website Friday October 31, 2008 McNalms Fall Luncheon Meeting MSU Federal Credit Union Community Room East Lansing, MI November 11 - 14, 2008 NALMS 2008 Lake Louise Symposium Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada

3 Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society -3- Fall Luncheon Meeting on Exotic Species: Regional and Local Management Friday, October 31, 2008 MSU Federal Credit Union Community Room East Lansing, MI The purpose of the luncheon meeting is to begin discussion on implementing a comprehensive aquatic exotic species management program for Michigan. Agenda 11:30amRegistration and Social Time (meet with friends and network with others) 11:55Welcome - Lois Wolfson, Michigan State University (MSU) and President, Michigan NALMS 12:00Luncheon 12:45Do We Have to Manage for Exotics “One Lake at a Time?” - John Magnuson, Professor Emeritus, Center for Limnology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 1:30Questions/Comments and Answer Session 1:45Status and Needs of Michigan’s Exotic Species Management Program – Roger Eberhardt, Office of the Great Lakes, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Lansing, MI 2:15pmLake Board Opportunities in Exotic Species Management - Pam Tyning, Progressive AE 2:30Adjourn Who Should Attend? Persons interested in exotic species management, lake ecosystems, and lake management are encouraged to attend. You do not have to be a member of Michigan NALMS to attend this event. When: Friday, October 31, 2008, from 11:30am - 2:30pm. Where: Community Room (Lower Level) MSU Federal Credit Union, 600 E. Crescent Rd. (off of S. Harrison Ave.), East Lansing, MI. For directions: Cost: $25 for McNALMS members and students; $35 for non-members. The lunch is included in this cost. Students may attend without purchasing lunch for $10. Non-members joining Michigan NALMS by the conference date may attend at the member cost. Contact: You can register for the conference through mail or on the web. Visit to register on the web. If you are mailing in your registration, please include the form see next page. For registration information, call Stephanie Smith at 517-353-3826. For conference information, contact: Lois Wolfson 517-353- 9222, email:

4 Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society -4- Fall Luncheon Meeting on Exotic Species: Regional and Local Management Friday, October 31, 2008 MSU Federal Credit Union Community Room East Lansing, MI Topic of Discussion: Regional and Local Management of Exotic Species Featured Guest Speaker: John J. Magnuson, Professor Emeritus, Center of Limnology, University of Wisconsin Registration Form: Please fill out this registration, include appropriate payment made payable to Michigan NALMS, and return to: McNALMS Luncheon, Institute of Water Research, 101 Manly Miles Bldg., Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48823. Name_______________________________________________________________ Address_____________________________________________________________ City__________________________State_______________Zip_________________ Phone_____________________________Email______________________________ Check the applicable box(es) below: ____McNALMS Member or Student and Lunch - $25 ____Non-member with Lunch - $35 ____Student without Lunch - $10 ____Check here if you prefer a vegetarian meal. Walk-ins are welcome however lunch cannot be guaranteed without notification by the deadline date of Friday, October 27.

5 Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society Nutrients May Cause More Problems than Just Weeds and Algae by Howard Wandell A recent study shows that nutrients in nonpoint source runoff can increase parasitic infections that elicit frog deformities. Deformed frogs first gained attention when schoolchildren discovered a pond where half of the frogs had missing or extra limbs. Since then, reports of deformed frogs have become common in the United States. The study demonstrates that increased levels of nitrogen and phosphorus cause sharp hikes in the abundance and reproduction of a snail that hosts microscopic trematode parasites. The nutrients stimulate algae growth, increasing snail populations and the number of parasites released by the snails. The parasites form cysts in the developing limbs of tadpoles causing missing limbs, extra limbs, and other severe malformations. Predators such as wading birds complete the parasite’s life cycle by consuming infected frogs and spreading the parasite back into the lake or pond. One of the main goals of the study was to understand how parasites respond to land use changes and ecosystem alterations. What it found was that nitrogen and phosphorus runoff pollution from agriculture, cattle grazing, and domestic runoff has the potential to significantly promote parasitic infection and deformities in frogs. As few as 12 trematode larvae can kill or deform a tadpole by burrowing into the limb region and disrupting normal leg development. A single infected snail can produce more than 1,000 larvae in one night. Frogs that become deformed rarely survive long. They become easy prey for wading birds, which creates a feedback loop to increase the level of infected snails. Of the 6,000 species of amphibians worldwide about 32 percent are threatened and 43 percent have declining populations. While the causes vary from habitat loss to diseases, the researchers are now exploring how nutrient pollution and limb malformations contribute to this pattern of decline. Dr. Johnson at the University of Colorado/Boulder is the lead author of the paper, “Aquatic eutrophication promotes pathogenic infection in amphibians,” published online in the September 24, 2007 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (a copy of the paper is available at For more information about the study, see Photo from -5-

6 Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society -6- Update on Phosphorus Fertilizer Legislation Submitted by Howard Wandell House Bills 6115 and 6116, would reduce the amount of phosphorus in products sold for lawn fertilization. The original language of the Bills, only allowed trace amounts to be present in the products. McNALMS provided comments to the House Committee supporting passage of the Bills. Unfortunately, the Bills were amended to allow phosphorus in the products, with instructions to not use more than 0.25 pounds per 1,000 square feet. While this application rate is not a lot of phosphorus, the language greatly complicates the process. It is likely most home owners will not know how to apply the fertilizer to achieve the appropriate rate. Finally, on most lawns phosphorus is not needed at any rate, making the application of any phosphorus unnecessary. In their amended form McNALMS is not supportive of the Bills. We will continue to advocate passage of the Bills in their original language. The Bills are still in the House of Representatives. It is very unlikely they will move until after the elections and possibly not even then. The agriculture community is generally not supportive of the Bills. While the proposed legislation does not impact the agriculture community, they are concerned about any restrictions on fertilizer application, which could eventually lead to restrictions on their use of fertilizers. Roscommon County Ordinance Banning Phosphorus Fertilizer Submitted by Roger Carey Roscommon County has recently passed an ordinance banning Phosphorus fertilizer use unless you have a soil test which proves that your ground needs phosphorus. A while back I was at a meeting in Lansing and a retired professor from MSU stated that most land in Michigan has more than enough phosphorus in it. I asked him why people weren’t educated to that fact. He said he couldn’t say why, but there is a pamphlet on the MSU Extension web site attesting to the fact there is enough phosphorus in most Michigan soil. (If you go to your search engine, type in phosphorus and home lawns, the pdf file from MSU extension will come up.) Anyway, Maggie and I finally decided to have our soil tested. All you have to do is dig down 4 inches in several places until you have around 2 cups of soil, put it in a plastic bag, take it to the Harrison Court House in the basement and for $13 they will send it to MSU to have it tested. We have no grass in the areas I dug the dirt from. Our soil came back needing nitrogen and a couple of other things but our phosphorus level was so high that it was off the chart. Several states have already banned the use of phosphorus in fertilizer unless a need is proven. It is only a matter of time before Michigan does the same. But the bottom line is this: if you are spending money on a phosphorus fertilizer, you are wasting it. We already have enough. You will not get a greener lawn or bigger plants. All you will do is grow more weeds in the lake. (Article as it appears in the Lake George Property Owners Association Fall 2008 Newsletter)

7 Lake Effect Newsletter Michigan Chapter of the North American Lake Management Society -7- Michigan’s Call to Action on Aquatic Invasive Species by Howard Wandell On March 5th the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality held a conference at the Kellogg Center on the campus of MSU to address what Michigan should do regarding the management of aquatic invasive species. Over 80 people attended representing federal, state, and local agencies as well as environmental organizations and private interests. Invited to the meeting were representatives from the states of Indiana, Minnesota, Wisconsin and New York who presented the aquatic invasive species programs in their states. The conference began with brief perspectives from the state agencies (DNR, DEQ and MDA) and some stakeholders (MSU, TNC, MNFI and MUCC). Several presenters noted that exotic invasive species are now the second most disruptive factor, after habitat loss, to ecosystems today. After the perspectives four breakout sessions were held for participants to discuss and offer suggestions. The four sessions covered rapid response, early detection and monitoring, funding and education and outreach. Some great ideas were offered which could substantially improve Michigan’s aquatic invasive species management program. One of the noteworthy outcomes of the conference was learning about the aquatic invasive programs in other Great Lake states. Unfortunately, Michigan’s program is significantly less developed than the programs in these other states. Michigan has produced an excellent plan, but lacks the funds to properly implement it. It is likely that Michigan is not prepared to effectively address an invasion by an aggressive invader like Hydrilla. Given time the agencies may be able to find the funds and address the policy issues to react to the invader. Unfortunately, when dealing with exotics time is of essence. Lost time can be the difference between eradicating the invader or adding it to the list of exotics living in Michigan. We can’t continue to wait and hope that the next invasive species will not be a serious problem for Michigan lakes. Michigan needs a program in place, funded and ready to react to the next invader. We must be able to eradicate the next threat before it gains a foothold. McNALMS needs to collaborate with other environmental organizations to encourage the State legislature to find the funding for a comprehensive Michigan aquatic invasive management program. Photo from

8 McNALMS 2008 Michigan Chapter, North American Lake Management Society P.O. Box 4812, East Lansing, MI 48826 2008 Membership Application/Renewal Form We’ve been making great strides in working together to protect and manage our lakes and waterways! Come join us! We would like to have you join us by participating in any of the following committees. Indicate if you are interested by checking as many boxes as applicable (a committee member will contact you with further information).  Program Committee  Publications Committee  Membership Committee Any other areas you are interested in? Please indicate which Membership is right for you:  $10 Student Membership  $25 Annual Membership  $100 Corporate Membership  General Contribution $ Please make check or money order payable to McNALMS and send with this completed form to the above address. First Name Last Name Title Company Address 1 Address 2 City, State, Zip Phone( ) Fax( ) E-mail Address  Nominating Committee  Government Affairs Committee  Serving as an Officer

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