Lake Status Reports

Japanese Knotweed 2021

The knotweed plants on our dam were treated by Nature Conservancy pesticide applicators last fall. You may have noticed the bare spots where the grass around the knotweed plants was also killed. They have already visited the dam this month and did find a few small plants surviving. They will treat them again sometime later this year.

Roy and I have been monitoring the knotweed along Mill Creek since 2012. We have identified 23 sites on 11 properties. Most of these sites have been treated and most of the plants have died. There are four properties downstream from the dam with knotweed which the Nature Conservancy will continue to treat. I have obtained signed permission forms from the owners of these properties. Roy has again hiked the these properties to locate surviving knotweed plots. They will be treated by a private contractor. As for the other seven land owners, we have asked them to try to keep their knotweed plants under control themselves.

Submitted by Bob Manning

Wildlife Report 2021

Ice out was around April 7th, about the same as last year. Spring brought some interesting migratory birds to the lake such as hooded mergansers. As far as the geese problem that we had last year, we were lucky this year. There were many geese spending the night here on their flight north, but none set up residence. One early morning I saw a V of 24 geese take off from our lake flying over the dam. We have not seen any geese on the lake and only one family off Garnet Lake Rd N.

We have a cute family of mergansers, a female with 8 babies. she has done a good job of protecting them against the eagle and osprey lurking around. No real mallard families this year, mainly adult groupings.

As far as the loon story on Garnet Lake, we continue to have 2 pairs of loons plus our 5th loon back by mid April, if not right after ice out. Of the two pairs, one pair was in the back bay and one pair was by the large bog in front of Candace and Bob’s place. It appeared that neither pair could nest, as the bogs have been disintegrating every year. We saw a pair try to build a nest, but the next day they were back in the water, and one would be struggling to get up on the bog. the following day there would be a loon on another bog patch. Usually they would have nested before Memorial Day, but it wasn’t until Mid June that each pair had found some skimpy area to nest. We kept having the rainfalls which meant that their nests sank closer to the lake each time. Around July 9 miraculously we had 3 chicks hatch. 1 at the middle bog and 2 further to the south. We were thankful they had hatched as both nests soon became submerged with all the rain we had gotten.

We are partnering with the Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation in a new program called the Loon Friendly Certification Program. Our committee are Elizabeth Corwin, Tom Corwin, Rick Palmer, Greg and Sandy Bruschi, Gary Bruschi, and Diane and John Burgess. The main commitments are to put up a fishline receptacle by the boat launch and check it frequently, educate visitors about loon safe boating and recreation, and organize a cleanup around the lake. We are also expected to pay $100 a year, which was covered by Greg and Sandy this past year, and is a line item in our next years budget. We have brochures to pass out to everyone, and extras for those who rent out their places.

Roy and I surveyed Garnet Lake for the Annual New York Common Loon Survey (which is part of the Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation in Saranac Lake) on Saturday, July 17 from 8-9. We found the 5 resident adult loons with one chick belonging to the front bog area loons and 2 chicks belonging to the Back Bay loons! In addition, Judy and Steve Thomson decided this year to survey Lizard Pond for the Survey and luckily they found one loon there. Unfortunately they got caught in a downpour while hiking and canoeing back home.

The turtles laid their eggs in mid June. They love sandy soil including Joe Bernat’s wildflower garden! Baby turtles will appear toward the end of August.

We have spotted the Pectinatella Magnifica jelly like bryozoans moss animals. This year there seem to be many of them partway past the bog area. You will see these pectin balls on dead trees under the water.

Lots of swallowtail butterflies around, and now the monarchs are appearing around the milkweed.

There was an article in Adirondack Life in their Great Outdoors Guide for 2021 featuring a Garnet Lake otter.

Others reported one bear sighting on the east side of the lake late at night, and another noted some Bald Eagle activity on occasion.

Submitted by Steve Thompson

Garnet Lake- Aquatic Invasive Plant Monitoring 2021

Garnet Lake participates in the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program(APIPP) andspecifically with respect to aquatic invasive plants. There are workshops eachyear which provide updates and identification techniques for lake stewards. Judy andSteveThomson usually attend this program but were unable to do so this year. Aquaticinvasive plants have not been found in the waters of Garnet Lake to date. We continueto be in early detection mode at the present time. Since resources to systematicallycheck boats entering and leaving the lake is largely impractical froma financial andmanpower perspective, early detection is the way for us to avoid the costly control andmanagement consequences if aquatic invasives were to be found in the lake.

What we do: We do regular monitoring of the lake, essentially in water that is 6feet or less, in weed beds around the lake. APIPP asks each volunteer responsible for lakeaquatic invasive species (AIS) to survey the lake at least once between the middleof July and September. We actually have surveyed the lake up to four times in this timeperiod in previous years. (Roy and Sue Keats and Judy Thomson have assistedmeinthis effort). We then submit a report to APIPP informing them of our activities andour findings. We surveyed the lake on July 27 this year and plan a follow up survey inAugust on a clear, calm day. As we paddle the lake frequently, we survey unofficiallyaswell. Surveys like ours have been done on over 400 Adirondack lakes and AIShavebeen found in about 25%of those surveyed. So the good news is that 3 out of 4of thesurveyed lakes are so far free of aquatic invasive species and we are in that group.

There are local lakes which have AIS (Loon, Minerva, Lake George, Hadlock Pond, andmore). Their associations or municipalities have invested considerable resourcestocontrol the spread of invasives in their waters. In many cases that total eradicationhasnot been accomplished, the investment in managing AIS continues. The economicandenvironmental consequences of dealing with this problem are serious. Preventionandearly detection are the best ways to avoid these negative consequences.

Potential Threats: Since boats and trailers are the main vectors for the introductionof aquatic invasive species into a lake, we need to be concerned since we have apublicboat launch on the lake. We do not have the volunteer capacity, or financial resourcesto staff a checkpoint for boats leaving or entering the lake. Outside resources arelimitedand are utilized for the larger and higher priority lakes in the Park. While boat washingstations and launch checkpoints are used at some, resources for lakes such as Garnet are generally not available. There is DEC signage at the Garnet Lake launch sitewhichclearly emphasizes to boaters that regular “clean, drain, and dry” methods are recommended to keep boats free of aquatic invasive species. DEC installed a barrier in2018 which prevents trailers from entering the lake to launch watercraft. This ineffect limits the size of boats that can enter the lake from the public site. This year as aresult of the COVID-19 Pandemic, there has been considerably more boat traffic throughthelaunch site and day use sites along the east side of the lake. Thus there is an increasein the likelihood that some boats may bring in invasives. Vigilance is important.

Eurasian Milfoil is the most common aquatic invasive found in Adirondack Lakes andisspread both by fragmentation and seeds. Other priority target AIS (found in Adirondackwaters) are Curly Leaf Pondweed, Variable-leaf Milfoil, and Water Chestnut. Thereareseven others which have been found in very few lakes and ponds in the Park. Boatswith intakes and propellers can easily transport and deposit fragments in the lake. Canoes and kayaks can also transport invasive species, although the incidenceismuchlower. It is possible that waterfowl can transmit AIS as well but the extent of that isnot really known.

Our lake is shallow, warms more quickly than most lakes, and has a lake bed that isrichin organic matter. These conditions are ideal for plant growth. Currently we haveahealthy diversity of native water plants but aquatic invasive species can overtakethisbalance if we are not actively working to keep them out.

Submitted by Steve Thompson

Adirondack Lake Assessment Program 2020

This will be the 19th year that we have participated in this program. There were 66 Adirondack lakes taking part in ALAP last year. The water samples are sent to Paul Smith's College Adirondack Watershed Institute for chemical analysis. They are no longer providing us with a yearly summary stating - “In an effort to improve reporting efficiency, maintain financial viability, and avoid unnecessary redundancies, the Adirondack Lake Assessment Program (ALAP) will move from producing an annual report to a five-year reporting cycle. During the interim years, the ALAP coordinators will provide a summary of the current year’s data to participating lakes.”

Submitted by Bob Manning


To the left are the graphs provided by last years report. If you have any questions or you would like to compare our lake to other lakes see – The 2018 report provides very comprehensive explanations of their procedures and the meaning of the various