November Newsletter Now Live!

Be sure to check out the latest edition of the Eagle Eye! In this edition you will see an update on:

  • The Code Red Alert
  • Invasive Phragmites on the lake
  • Lake Stewart report
  • The date for our next AGM Social!

Reach out to the ELCA with any questions, comments or concerns and enjoy the winter season!

 

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Eagle Lake Water Advisory

On Friday, September 22 the North Bay- Parry Sound District Public health unit issued a blue-green algae warning for Eagle Lake. The full advisory can be found here.

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Photo of blue gree algae taken from Eagle Lake in the Fall of 2017.

The water was tested by the Ministry of the Environment and blue-green algae bacteria was found. Chunks of algae ranging in size from small peas to bread plates have been seen floating in and out of Angus Bay and Mikisew Provincial park. Toxins were not present at the time of testing but with the very warm weather it is likely that the algae came in bloom. The Health Unit will not re-test the water again this year.

In subsequent phone calls, the public health unit advised us that to be safe, no one on the lake should be ingesting water or using it for cooking. Do not eat fish from the lake. The bacteria can be spread throughout the lake by the wind moving the water around. Boiling the water does not kill the toxins.

Swimming, bathing and showering in lake water should be avoided especially in the south basin.

We have been told that algae can survive cold winter temperatures so it is not clear when the water will be safe again. Blue green algae has been seen in other lakes under the ice.

A few years ago, when the lake water was tested by the association, the clarity was six metres. There has been obvious deterioration as the clarity is now only two metres.
Management of blue-green algae is a complex issue and requires the participation of all the lake residents. The Eagle Lake Association is looking into how best to control it for future years.

Algae is caused by the use of fertilizers, shampoo, bathing in the lake and faulty septic systems. With all the rain we’ve experienced this summer there has been a lot of run off into the lake. Please do not use fertilizers, bath in the lake, and, consider testing your septic system. We all need to work together to manage this very disturbing development. There were some sightings of algae in August 2016 but it wasn’t in bloom. Because of this no warning was issued. We have been told that algae is generally worse when the weather is warm. So warmer summers in the future may trigger algae earlier in the prime cottage season.

We all love this lake so let’s all do our parts to protect the lake.

We will investigate best practices for remediation and report back to everyone later this fall.

Please feel free to use our Contact page if you would like to reach out to the association directly.

Sincerely,
Michael Mitchell, President
Eagle Lake Conservation Association.

EAGLE EYE SUMMER NEWSLETTER NOW PUBLISHED!

Screen Shot 2017-06-18 at 9.02.04 AMCatch up with the community on the lake and learn about how we are celebrating Canada Day, hear the journey of a dog named Solo, receive an update from the Lake Steward, learn more about invasive phragmites on the lake, understand potential insurance savings, find out where to pick up a copy of the 5th annual calendar and more!

2017 – June

Don’t forget to renew your membership for 2017!

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Mark your calendars and join us at the Highlander Brewery for the AGM and Social!

Feel free to contact the ELCA if you are having trouble viewing the newsletter.

LITTER PICK-UP CANCELLED

Due to the amount of rainfall over the last few days on Eagle Lake, the ditches, where the majority of the trash accumulates, are filled with water. This makes the litter pick up challenging to complete.

Please accept the ELCA’s apology for cancelling the litter pick-up event this year.

See everyone on the lake soon!

LET’S GET THE LAKE READY FOR SUMMER!

IMG_0127Here is hoping everyone had a very Happy Easter! For those of you who have not made it up to the cottage in the last few weeks, the snow is practically gone! In the last six days, we have seen the ice on the lake recede considerably from shore at the Narrows and the southern basin. This past weekend we officially entered spring as the last of the ice on the lake melted.

The ELCA is looking forward to spring. We are also looking forward to our Annual Litter pick up on Saturday, May 6th, 2017. Join us at the Narrows at 9am to participate in this event. Expect to get an assigned pick-up area, pair up with a friend, grab a set of garbage bags and head off to clean up our community for summer. Please remember to bring a pair of work gloves. This is also a great event for students looking for community service hours as well as the Board of the ELCA can sign off on hours!

Afterwards join us back at the Narrows for a light lunch and refreshments. In the meantime, let’s all hope for good weather.

COMMUNITY EVENT: CALLE

CALLE Central Almaguin Lifelong Learning Experiences is sponsoring several events through the spring and summer. Events are open to all members of the community!

Screen Shot 2017-04-23 at 9.39.05 AMThe first event of the season is on May 5th at the Highlander Brew Co. with Sue and Jim Waddington where they will be presenting in the “Footsteps of the Group of Seven”.

Following this event, join CALLE on June 4th for “Where is the Airport?” at the Joly Airport in the airport terminal. Gary Blanchett will be featured at this event discussing the 85+ year history of the local airport.

February Newsletter Now Available!

img_0074Time to get ready for Spring!

The February edition of Eagle Eye is now available. Learn about the Restore Your Shore initiative, hear an update on the boat launch, learn about the testing on phragmites and join at for a pint at the Highlands to celebrate our AGM this year in mid-July!

Be sure to mark your calendars for May 6th to help keep our environment beautiful at the annual litter pick-up. Lunch provided!

Questions or concerns? Contact the ELCA.

Public Boat Launch – ELCA President Update

In our most recent newsletter the ELCA included an information article concerning a public boat launch that Machar Township has planned to construct on municipal property located at 40 Angus Point Road. Subsequent to that, the municipality issued a tender for the project which is subject to approval from the Provincial Government. Since then the issue has become extremely controversial and numerous submissions have been made to Council in support and in opposition to the project.

The chosen site is currently used primarily as a park for people who are attracted by its shallow sandy bottom which is particularly attractive for those who have rocky shorelines and/or small children. It has also been used to launch small boats into the Lake.

There have been many arguments put forward by those concerned with this issue. Those in favour identify the fact that, unlike most other local lakes, Eagle Lake has no properly constructed public boat launch. While there are three available sites at; Mikisew Park, the Narrows, and Rainbow Bay, all of them can be problematic, and the municipality has no direct control of these facilities. In addition, boat owners must pay a fee each time they use these boat launches. While this might be a minor consideration for lakefront property owners who may put their boats in and remove them only once a year, it can become expensive for other Machar residents, as well as those from other local communities, who would like to boat on the lake throughout the summer.

Machar has applied for funding for this project through a program operated by the Federal Government. The grants are restricted to the improvement of existing facilities and are not provided for new infrastructure projects. Because this property has been used to launch boats, the Township is hopeful that much of the project cost will be covered by Federal funding.

This issue has raised many concerns from opponents, particularly those who live in proximity to 40 Angus Bay Point. They argue that the existing launch sites provide adequate access to the lake. In addition, the proposed site is not on, or near, a thoroughfare, and other locations on the lake should be considered before a decision is made by Council. The relative remoteness of the location suggests it will not be widely used, but the construction would permanently alter the nature of this property. If the launch was to attract increased numbers of boaters, this would increase the possibility of the introduction of invasive species.

It should be noted that an invasive vegetation has already established itself at this site and opponents of the project are concerned that the proposed construction would uproot this and further spread it around the Lake. When informed about the project, the ELCA provided the Township with signage warning about the negative impact invasive species have so it can be posted at the site.

A significant amount of time was spent on this issue at our Annual General Meeting in August. Mayor Carleton spoke about Council’s plans and received considerable negative feedback. Subsequent to her presentation, the Almaguin News has carried two articles dealing with the issue and the formal presentations that have been made to Council. At the AGM a number of alternative sites were suggested for a public boat launch.

Currently Council is reviewing the presentations that have been made and a large amount of information that has been provided by proponents and opponents. Nothing can proceed until approval for the project is received from the Province. Representatives from the Ministry of Natural Resources visited the site in late August but have not provided a date for their decision.

The Eagle Lake Conservation Association is not opposed to the construction of a public boat launch on Eagle Lake. This is a public water body and all members of the public have a right to enjoy it, particularly those from our community. At the same time, the proposed site has significant problems that have been thoroughly described to Council. It would be far better to identify a more central location that does not create the same level of environmental concerns and would be more accessible to a greater number of boaters.

Michael Mitchell.