Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Today's Catch!

A Bucket O' Fish 

(photo by Sheila Elwin)

Fish Gazers

Yesterday's delivery of more than 4,000 bluegill and 1,000 minnows drew an enthusiastic throng of neighbors---to say the least. If you missed it click the link below. It's almost like being there:

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Eight Hundred New Neighbors

                                                       Channel Catfish

On June 23rd Pine Lake welcomed the first round of fish into our brand-new lake----not counting the creek fish that had already set up housekeeping. This small delivery of approximately eight hundred catfish and grass carp and new week's large delivery will effectively restock the lake with a desirable balance of species and a balance of prey and predator. 

Watch for an announcement about the big delivery this coming week. On or around June 30th a tanker truck filled with five thousand 3-4 inch fish will deposit its contents into the water. 

For the half-dozen residents who watched the first delivery, this will be dramatically different. For anyone who missed the first delivery, watch it here:

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Home Improvement

As of this week our city has ten information kiosks located at various points along the wetland walk. Each kiosk features a top banner of native plants, all photographed by Dallas Denny, and a variety of additional photos submitted by other residents. On the bottom left corner is a QR code that will send smartphone users directly to this site for deeper intel about the stream and lake restoration---which is now considered a model project for other cities, civil engineers, and water management professionals to study.

So---what's the story on the algae? 

The lakebed construction and redesign included a massive redistribution of dirt. As the lake ecology recalibrates we will have to continue managing algae for the rest of the summer. Stocking the lake with fish, including sterile grass carp, will be a help but the real results of fish activity won't be visible until next year.  

Until then, one approach to algae mitigation is The Manual Assault Method (M'am), demonstrated below by six intrepid residents (two not in photo) who call themselves Team Sisyphus. Three hours of raking and seining resulted in a significant clearing of the algae bloom next to the canoe put-in. 
Dateline: 11:00 EST 6/16/12. Let's see how long those results last. Good luck Team Sis!

Special thanks to Susan Ramsey for kiosk design and Kathie Denobriga, Kris Casariego, Lynne Nygaard, and Melissa Tidwell for kiosk content and editing. 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Here Come the TREES!!!

After a winter hiatus with not much activity to speak of, The Dredge Report is back for a few final postings as the lake and wetlands receive the finishing touches.

As everyone has probably noticed, the final stage of the streambank restoration project has kicked into high gear, starting with the planting of more than 150 trees (not to mention the soon-to-arrive shrubs). The installation area begins at the topmost end of the eastern wetlands and ends at the last retention pond in the western wetlands.

Megan Pulsts has a thorough description of the next steps in the current issue of PlainTalk. The project will be entirely completed by May 1st.

For more fantastic photographs of the March 6th tree installation action check out Dallas Denny's blog.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Dredge Report Card

Until a few weeks ago, the flow into the lake was controlled by a contraption consisting of a Stop sign wrapped in a plastic bag. Low-concept; low-design; very effective. As the dozens of residents witnessed on October 30 with the turning of the red wheel (see photos below), the city now has something even better than a Stop-In-A-Bag: three separate valves that attenuate water flow into the lake and the creek.

However, the time it takes to fill the lake will depend on several factors. If the weather is wet, not only will the rain contribute water to the lake bed but it will also keep the stream flowing at a rate that doesn't require turning off the valves to ensure stream health. Here's a description from Paul Simpson, our project engineer:

The rate at which the lake will fill is dependent on several factors. First and foremost of course is the weather. This is the driest time of the year so that the flow in Snapfinger Creek is very low. As we are filling the lake, the State requires that the flow in the creek be maintained to at least minimum levels known as the “7Q10”. This equates to what is known as the “base flow” conditions in the stream. If we were to pull too much flow from the creek, it would harm the ecosystem of the creek, which of course we do not want to do. Our maintenance crews will be checking frequently on the flow in the creek and the inflow to the lake and will be adjusting the flows as needed to maintain the proper stream flow.

Meanwhile, there are many tasks that remain on the "punch list," including:

*the landscape architect finishing the design of our banks and berms
*general clean-up and restoration of swings, signs, and debris
*AND the re-opening of the road by the end of the week

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


wait for it . . . wait for it . . .

This Sunday, October 23rd at 4:00 p.m. the water to fill the lake will be turned on. Officially and with great festivity.

Everyone who wants to see the first filling waters since March will gather at the path into the Eastern Wetlands and commence celebrating the return of our lake at the speed of 700 gallons a minute!

Bring cameras and champagne.