KLSA General Meeting Presentations – September 29, 2012, 10:15 p.m.
- Colleen Middleton, MSc(c) graduate student at TrentUniversity and one of the authors of KLSA’s The Algae of the Kawartha Lakes booklet, summarized the booklet’s contents. Her talk reviewed what algae is, the notion of ‘good‘ and ‘bad’ algae, a discussion of blue-green algae, and the identification of different types of algae. Colleen stated that, because of the variety and complexity of algae it was not possible to suggest specific management techniques for reducing its growth but that applying general good stewardship practices to reduce nutrient input to our lakes was the best long term strategy.
- Dr. Paul Frost, David Schindler Endowed Professor of Aquatic Science at TrentUniversity, summarized his work on two projects designed to assess human nutrient contributions to the Kawartha Lakes. The Miskwaa Ziibi river study measured nutrients in the river above and below a developed region of the river throughout the summer. The data indicates that, over time, the phosphorus content of the water below the development became increasingly lower than that above the development indicating that the biological activity of the river was storing the phosphorus. Further monitoring during the fall to see if nutrients would be released would be desirable but had not been possible. Much data has been collected and further analysis is ongoing. A second study to see if evidence can be found for the presence of human derived nutrients in the near-shore areas of lakes was described. Water, plant, algae and sediment samples from mid-lake, near-shore developed and undeveloped areas have been collected in five of the Kawartha Lakes. They will be analyzed to detect nutrients and chemical signatures indicative of human presence using a number of methods including stable nitrogen isotope technique. Paul hopes to be able to report his results next year.
- Mike Dolbey requested that members, after reading The Algae of the Kawartha Lakes booklet, provide feedback by responding to the internet based survey that was available through a link on the KLSA website.
- Kevin Walters summarized the performance of the areas’ sewage treatment plants during the past year. He also compared the current volume of phosphorus discharges to historical amounts, and postulated the reason for the recent explosion in weed growth in our lakes. A detailed written summary was provided to the Executive).
- Paul Reeds, farmer and member of CKL’s Agricultural Development Advisory Board spoke about agriculture as a nutrient contributor and what can be done about it. He outlined solutions that are available in many areas but indicated that application was often expensive and depended on the willingness of individual farmers. Funding of current government programs is small and shrinking. Because application for funding is voluntary, funding does not always get applied to the most serious problems. Paul outlined many things that the public could do to assist farmer in improving their environmental stewardship including lobbying for increased funding and reduced permit fees for environmental projects.
- Mike Stedman directed attention to the displays set up by KRCA and Voices of the Trent-Severn Waterway at the back of the room. He thanked the editorial committee for their work on The Algae of the Kawartha Lakes booklet. He encouraged those present to make a donation in support of the work of KLSA. He thanked the volunteer water testers for their continued dedication. He announced that KLSA’s spring meeting would be held at the Bobcaygon Community Centre.
- Kevin Walters thanked Mike Stedman for his many years of service as Chair of KLSA and presented him with a gift as a token of our appreciation.
The meeting was adjourned.