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Monday, April 15, 2024

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Long Pond and Great Pond Watershed-Based Management Plans

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2022-2032 Long Pond Watershed-Based Management Plan

On September 22- 23, 2020, the Belgrade Lakes Association (BLA) conducted a survey of the developed land areas in the Long Pond watershed which included portions of land within the towns of Mount Vernon, Belgrade, Rome, Vienna and New Sharon. The purpose of the survey was to identify and prioritize sources of erosion and stormwater runoff that may affect the water quality of the lake, which is considered impaired for not meeting state water quality standards due to a decline in water quality over the past 30 years. The last survey of the Long Pond watershed was conducted in 2002, 18 years ago.  

Current information is needed to help develop a watershed management plan that will protect and improve water quality.  A new survey was also a necessary step for applying and receiving grant funding from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).  These funds can provide cost-sharing opportunities landowners, road associations, and towns to complete improvements identified during the survey.  Acquiring grant funding is a 2- to 3-year process that begins with the volunteer assisted watershed survey, followed by updating the watershed management plan.

The 2022 - 2032 Long Pond Watershed-Based Management Plan

The 2018 - 2030 Great Pond Watershed-Based Management Plan

For more information contact the BLA at: (207) 512-5150 or email info@BLAmaine.org.             

        

STOP Invasive Aquatic Plants - Formerly STOP Milfoil

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Protect your Property and Lake with a good BUFFER!

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Belgrade Lakes Water Temperatures - Still BRRRR!! Ice only went out on March 22nd!!!

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Loon Preservation Project

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Protecting the Call of the Wild - Colby News

Two Colby students spent the summer of 2023 monitoring loons while interning with the Belgrade Lakes Association's Loon Preservation Project.

 

The Best of our 2023 Loon Gallery and Wildlife Photographs!

 

For 2024, your Belgrade Lakes Association is now into their fifth year of their Loon Preservation Project with renowned expert Lee Attix of Loon Conservation Associates.  We continue to solicit funding to continue our common loon (Gavia immer) study on both Great and Long Ponds to develop a comprehensive plan in order to support and grow the loon population in a sustainable manner. With this plan, we will be better prepared to establish and maintain nesting areas that are sensible and well-protected.

Volunteers on the two lakes have always understood the significant of these beautiful birds within our environment. Each year, many volunteers canvas the waters for loons in support of the annual Audubon Loon Count. These loon-lovers along with the BLA and like stewards of the environment are willing and able; with the necessary funding and resulting study, to better assist and educate all of the volunteers and maximize their impact on the region.

The Belgrade Lakes Association, consisting of 583 members as of January 2023, continues to work hard to foster strong relationships in an effort to create a sustainable environment within the watershed. The Association has been involved in providing educational opportunities in the region related to water quality and the environment; we have also been working cooperatively with Colby College on several water quality-related initiatives, served as the region’s leader in milfoil remediation and prevention, provided support for the study and treatment of phosphorus-related blooms, as well as providing support for land conservation in order to protect the water resources.

The impact of weather on our environment can be significant and we must gain a better perspective of its impact on our resources. These changes have impacted the common loon and its habits within the region. We understand that pollutants have an impact on the loon population so we all must strive to minimize such negative effects. Our Association seeks to be proactive in supporting our loon population rather than be caught flat footed wondering what happened to our loons!

 

The targeted study is being organized by Lee Attix, a demonstrated research and conservation professional. The project includes a comprehensive study of the watershed area, a survey of the two lakes, consulting on effective loon management strategies, public presentations, volunteer training, contaminant analysis, among other helpful, important tasks to enable the Belgrade Lakes Association to leverage its volunteer pool in protecting and strengthening the common loon population.

Number of People Served by the Project: 5,900 year-round residents, plus an approximate 4,400 seasonal residents 

Geographic Area Served by the Project: The primary focus of this project takes place within the watersheds of Great Pond and Long Pond in the towns of Rome, Belgrade, and Mount Vernon, within Kennebec County, Maine. The project covers approximately 133 square miles, of which 26.5 acres is water.

 Time frame for the Project: 2019-2025.  We have just successfully completed our 4th year!

 

2023 Monitoring Summary Report

2022 Monitoring Summary Report 

2021 Monitoring Summary Report

 2020 Monitoring Summary Report

2019 Monitoring Summary Report

 

Cradling Great Pond chick during a 2021 Banding Project

2020 Long Pond/Ingham Pond's suspected abandoned loon egg with peening chick inside egg (video).

 

New 2022 Successful BLA Long Pond Robinson Style Loon Nest

 

BLA Loon Nest Upper Long Pond 2020

 

25 yr old Floating nest upper Long Pond 2019

 

Results of the 2023 Audubon Loon Count

July 24th, 2020 Loon Survey Update

2019 Great Pond     2019 Long Pond

A Special Thank you goes out to our 2023 dedicated Loon Volunteers that gave up so much of their personal time to assist with our weekly Loon Surveys.  We could not have this sucessful project without their service and support.  Thank you all!!

Mentor Lee Attix, Joan Amon, Sandy Colt, Paul Feinberg, Blaine and Nattie Horrocks, Elaine and Roger Karabin, Matthew, Alex and Tim McManus, Russ Sabia, Ruth Vigue, Alex Wall, and many other dedicated individuals!

 

 

 

Please Help us out if you can, with your support today!

Please click on the below Donate link

 

Maine Lakes Boating Rules

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April 3, 2024 - Wake Boats Legislative Update

LD 2284 – An Act to Implement Recommendations in the

Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife’s Report on Wake Boats
“Wake boats” are powerful boats equipped with ballast tanks and other mechanical systems designed to enhance the size of the boat’s wake for wake surfing. The boat’s extra-large waves crash against shorelines with more force than typical watercraft, causing erosion, disturbing sediments, and, sometimes, washing over the nests and eggs of Common Loons. Maine already has a “boater safety zone” law that requires boats to make headway speed within 200 feet of shore, but that distance is not enough to dampen the impact of these new, larger waves. Informed by a diverse stakeholder process facilitated by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife held over the summer of 2023, the legislation addresses wake boat-related impacts to wildlife and human communities, including language to prohibit an individual from operating a motorboat in less than 15 feet of water or within 300 feet of the shoreline when the motorboat is engaged in a wakesurfing activity. This bill was enacted by the Maine State Legislature on April 3, 2024.

 

Maine's 200 ft No Wake Zone: 

It is illegal to operate a vessel at greater than “headway speed” (the slowest speed at which it is still possible to maintain steering and control of the vessel) while:


            Within 200 feet of any shoreline, including islands 

 

Exception: Vessels may operate at greater than headway speed in the areas listed above while actively fishing or while following a direct course to pick up or drop off skiers.

 

There are many common sense reasons for this NO WAKE law but there are also many that most of us are not aware of:

Safety of other boaters
Prevention of damage to boats tied up to docks 
Reduction of shoreline erosion and more importantly
Protection of our wildlife habitat, Loon nesting sites in particular, 11 on Long Pond, 13 on Great Pond!
 
Your BLA Board of Directors

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Our Sponsors

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Contact Us

Phone: 207-512-5150

Email:  Info@BlaMaine.org

Belgrade Lakes Association

137 Main Street

PO Box 551

Belgrade Lakes, ME 04918

Mission

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Mission

To protect and improve the watershed of Great Pond and Long Pond through preservation, education, and action.

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