Lake watershed surveys conducted by community volunteers are an effective tool for identifying and resolving land use problems that have a negative impact on lake water quality. Watershed surveys also increase overall public awareness about threats to lake health and can serve as rallying calls in a community. LSM has renewed its commitment to support funding assistance for watershed survey activities in 2024 together with Maine Lakes! By pooling our resources, the two organizations hope to provide assistance to multiple groups and support the continued success of this program.
An essential aspect to consider with a watershed survey is the full watershed of the lake, not just the lakefront community. Conflicts can exist between those in the nearshore environment and in the area further from the lake. It is vital to address issues holistically and come together as one community. Although the surveys are intended to identify relatively easy-to-detect and resolve problems associated with soil erosion (the greatest non-point source of phosphorus in many Maine lakes), they also act to bring together individuals with diverse ecological, economic, recreational and social perspectives. This has been shown to enhance successful long-term lake stewardship. Details concerning the process of conducting a survey can be found at: https://www.maine.gov/dep/land/watershed/materials/lakewsurveyguide.pdf and related material can be found at: https://www.maine.gov/dep/land/watershed/materials.html.
More information regarding the watershed survey grant application process will be available in January on this webpage. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in being notified of the posting of the application process or if you have any questions.