On Wednesday, July 24, the Sheepscot Lake Association (SLA) held its annual meeting at the Fish and Game Club on the lake. The meeting was preceded by a potluck supper and a great meal was enjoyed. During the meeting, the following topics were discussed:
- Courtesy boat inspection: Again this year, SLA has hired two boat inspectors to work on Saturdays and Sundays throughout July and August. These inspectors check all boats at the launch to protect the lake against milfoil and other invasive plants. However, it is incumbent on all boat owners to check their boats prior to every launch and pull, especially if they have been boating in other lakes. Invasive plants can cause serious damage to the ecosystem of the lake if not found and removed. Remedial action can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to attempt control of the infestation.
- Water quality: The SLA board continues to test the water quality of the lake on a regular basis using a Secchi Disk and scope. Sheepscot Lake consistently yields a transparency of 16.1 feet which is outstanding. In addition to testing with the Secchi Disk, surface grabs are done three to four times a year to measure the total phosphorus which averages seven ppb, another great reading. Dissolved oxygen meter readings have also remained in the target area. Fortunately, there also has never been any algal blooms in the lake!
- Loon Count: Each year they participate in conjunction with the Maine Audubon Society in an organized loon count. This year the count of loons was six, including one chick. As always, lake users are urged to exercise caution when they see loons on the lake, and never approach a nesting loon. They are the treasures of the lake and of Maine’s while serving us as an early warning of lake quality problems.
- LakeSmart: SLA continues to participate with the Maine State Department of Environmental Protection Agency to implement the Lakesmart program. Created in 2003 to minimize human impact on lake quality, the LakeSmart team will inspect lakefront properties at no cost to the homeowner to evaluate your property’s impact on lake health and provide recommendations on steps you can take to ensure your home is Lake smart! If you are interested in participating in an evaluation please contact Maria O’Rourke, SLA board member at Sheepscotlakeassoc@gmail.com .
- Status of legislative activity: As you know, LD922, the legislation aimed at reintroducing alewives and sea lamprey to Sheepscot Lake fortunately was pulled in 2018. There is no further legislation at this time. Should there be any future efforts to do so, at the expense of the health of our lake and existing fish population, SLA as well as our supportive town members will continue to fight any efforts and keep you informed.
- Palermo Days: SLA will be attending the Palermo Days parade as well as displaying a gorgeous basket of Maine treats for raffle on August 10. Please stop by to say hi and buy a raffle ticket if you’re there!
Finally, following the annual meeting, the board met to elect officers for the next year. Gary Miller, founding member of the Sheepscot Lake Association, who has served as president for the last eight years, and will remain on the board for one remaining year. The members thank Gary for his amazing efforts as president and all the hard work he has done over many years. Transitioning to president is Slater Claudel. In total, there are nine active members on the board, serving in various roles to keep all the programs active and healthy. They are currently search for a secretary for the association. This does not require being a member of the board. If you are interested, please contact Carolyn Viens at Sheepscotlakeassoc@gmail.com
If you have not yet joined the Sheepscot Lake Association and are interested, or if you have not yet paid your 2019-2020 dues, they would love to hear from you! By Mail: Sheepscot Lake Association, PO Box 300, Palermo, Maine 04354. By email: Sheepscotlakeassoc@gmail.com.
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