Curly Leaf Pondweed

Last week several LOFA members attended an online training session led by Zach Wilson of the Iron County Land and Water Conservation Department about how to identify Curly Leaf Pondweed (CLP), a persistent aquatic invasive species which has infested Rice Lake and has been recently discovered growing in PIke Lake, just up the river from Lake of the Falls. The ICLWC is partnering with the Iron County Lakes and Rivers Alliance in an effort to control CLP and prevent it’s spread., and the landowners around Pike Lake are forming a new lake association specifically to meet this challenge. Volunteers are being trained and scheduled to hand-pull the weeds in the next few weeks during their early growth period, when they can be identified and removed without spreading further.

If Curly Leaf Pondweed were to make its way into Lake of the Falls it would be a serious problem for all of us. Our lake has the perfect environment for it to grow and thrive. Here is a video produced by the North Lakeland Discovery Center showing how to identify the plant. Since we can’t meet in person to learn about this together, please watch the video and be on the lookout for CLP when you are out on the lake or up the river. If you find any don’t pull it, but send a note immediately to lofassociation@gmail.com so we can let Zach know. And if you want to volunteer as a “pondweed puller” on Pike Lake see this page on their website for more information

Thanks!

Turtle River Watershed Management Plan

In response to concern about environmental threats to our waterways in Iron County, the Iron County Lakes and Rivers Alliance (of which LOFA is a member) has been working with the State of Wisconsin to create a new model for assessing and improving the health of our lakes and rivers. ICLRA secretary Dick Thiede’s letter, sent by LOFA treasurer Jack Schuett to LOFA members last Tuesday, goes into a lot of detail about the reasons for this effort and is worth the time it takes to read. The upshot is the creation of the Turtle River Watershed Management Plan, a cooperative effort to address specific problems in the river system that can potentially affect everyone, such as the aquatic invasive species which are already present in some upriver lakes. The ICLRA is hosting a “kickoff” conference on Wednesday, January 29 to start the ball rolling on this important initiative. Time and place are still TBD and will be posted here. As Jack stated in his email to LOFA members on Tuesday,

While this is not an ideal time for many of you to attend, it is imperative to get the “ball rolling” as to have something in place ASAP. We know the the problem will not resolve itself. There will be committees and studies to be done so there will be plenty of chances to get involved.

We’ll keep everyone posted on the progress of this initiative.

To read Dick Thiede’s email, click here, and here to see a map of the Turtle River Watershed.

Our second annual fall get-together

. . .at Beaver’s Resort was a success last Saturday with 17 people in attendance (at least that’s what I counted) and lots of lively conversation and good feelings all around. It’s always sad to see another season end, but this is a great way to say farewell! I took a couple of pictures of the group but they were a little blurry and the light was bad, so, instead, enjoy this photo of some otters who visited the north end of the lake on a gorgeous morning last week. Before it started to snow!

Beaver’s Resort Musky Tournament 2019

What do you do on a cold rainy day? Why fish in a Musky tournament on beautiful Lake of the Falls of course!

Twelve boats braved the cold, wet., windy elements but only one boat had the winning fish.

The winner was Jason Burmesch with his 40 1/2 inch musky.

Here is a picture of the fish and Jason holding his first place trophy which was made by Joe Chivers.

Congratulations to Jason.

Acoustic bat monitoring on May 29th

Bat survey May, 2019Our first bat survey of 2019 revealed at least 3 species of bats thriving around our lake as of May 29, including Little Brown Bats, which are threatened statewide by white-nose syndrome. The surveys are done each year as part of the Wisconsin Bat Program and coordinated locally by the North Lakeland Discovery Center. This is fewer species than last year, but our first survey was conducted a little earlier in the year and along a slightly different route than in previous years; we have two more surveys scheduled for this season, weather permitting. The next survey should be in mid-July and the map will be posted a few weeks later, so stay tuned! Maps from our previous attempts and more information can be seen here and here