LOON UPDATE JULY 28, 2020

Members around the lake have been asking about a baby loon this year, here is a quick update.

We had a pair traveling about the lake this summer, and a third loon was observed a few times.  The nesting raft was put out in the Northwest corner of the lake in early May, and the pair visited it often, for about 6 weeks.   Finally, on June 27, they laid an egg, and proceeded to spend most of the time with one adult loon incubating, or nearby.  Sadly, however, during the overnight of July 2 – 3, something happened to the egg, and the next morning the loons were no longer sitting on their nest, or in the vicinity.  Speculation about what happened is that either they left the egg unattended for a while and a predator (e.g. muskrat, turtle, 3rd loon) was involved, or the egg lacked shell integrity and just broke.  But that is speculation.  We will never know.

WEED WATCH VOLUNTEERS NEEDED!

Hello Everyone,

The PLA Invasive Weed Watch program needs your help in keeping Province Lake invasive weed free, now and into the future. We currently have 14 weed watch volunteers who visually inspect for invasive weeds along the entire lake shoreline but we are in need of more volunteers to ensure the lake remains invasive weed free. Please consider becoming a weed watch volunteer.

The weed watch program entails using a kayak, a canoe, or a boat to patrol assigned areas each month from June until September looking for invasive weeds. The methods used are either a zigzag method going from the shoreline toward the main lake body and back to the shoreline or a back and forth method going along the shoreline and going back and forth deeper toward the main lake body. We have found that visual inspection is easier in low sunlight and is best in the early morning or late afternoon.

Please consider volunteering for this important task by contacting me at tavye@msn.com or calling 603-475-5691.

Tucker Vye
PLA Invasive Weed Watch Coordinator

PLA Annual Meeting – IMPORTANT CHANGE

Hello PLA Members,

We hope you are weathering this time of COVID-19 as best possible given the challenges and uncertainties it brings. The PLA Board believes health should be our primary focus and it would be best to have a virtual Annual Meeting this year. In light of that, we will not be meeting on Saturday, July 18 at Edge Lake Farm. Although we will miss seeing you in person, we believe the virtual meeting approach will accommodate as many as possible and meet all our goals while providing you with the information that is necessary to keep our organization and lake healthy and vibrant during this time.

As a first order of business, the Board is proposing the following slate of candidates for election to the 2020-2021 Board (PLA Slate of Officers attachment). As at the annual meeting, we are soliciting names of those who would like to be considered to serve on the Board – a virtual “from the floor” nomination that we typically do. To be nominated for a position on the PLA board, the nominee must be a member in good standing (i.e. current year dues paid by July 1) and meet the following expectations:

  1. Attend all official board meetings, typically four during May to September, and the Annual Meeting in July.
  2. Officers-perform duties normally associated with the position.
  3. Directors-act as advisory board and decision makers for various issues and expenditures that arise, lead one or more duties incumbent on the board during the year, and serve as contact with the lake community.

Please nominate names by Monday, July 6, 2020 to provincelakemembers@gmail.com or president@provincelake.org

We will compile the final slate of candidates to be voted on. This vote, and the vote to approve the 2019 Annual Minutes (attached) will be done by Survey Monkey and will be sent only to current members (paid as of July 1, 2020). The Survey Monkey will be sent on July 10, 2020 and your vote must be received by July 15, midnight. 

The Board will share the result of these two votes and our annual reports by video recording for you to view at your convenience. It will be posted on our website Provincelake.org on July 20, 2020. 

You may then submit any questions regarding the Annual Meeting to the Board by email to provincelakemembers@gmail.com  or president@provincelake.org by Aug 1, 2020.  We will post the questions and answers on our website by Aug 8, 2020.  

We appreciate your patience and understanding during this time. Many thanks for your generous and continuing support as we move forward together. Have a great July 4th holiday and be well.

Lorie for the PLA

EAGLE NEST FALLS OUT OF TREE.

The PLA received the following notification from the family that owns the house on Point Rd. where the large eagle’s nest has been for years.

We are very sad to report, We arrived Friday night to see the Eagles nest has fallen. The babies are huddled on the ground together. We are awaiting for a bird expert to come assist the scared babies. We have not yet seen mom and dad Eagle.   So sad for everyone who enjoys this wonderful family.

We then received this update:

The Audubon Bird Specialist has come to pick up the Eagle babies at 10 pm on Friday. She will keep us updated on their condition.   We have asked if they could be released at Province Lake at the appropriate time.   We will let you know if we hear any updates.

NH LAKE HOSTS AND LAKE WEED REMINDER

Hi all,
Summer is arriving at the lake. It’s a beautiful afternoon and we know everyone is excited for the start of summer after a very challenging spring.

We are pleased to inform you that our NH Lake Host Inspectors will be at the boat ramp starting May 22. The State has deemed the NH Lake Host program to be an essential service. It is a NH Lakes requirement that social distancing, wearing masks and the use of sanitizers will be employed by the inspectors. Our inspectors will be keeping our lake healthy and invasive free while being mindful of your health, and we would ask the same of you as you utilize the boat ramp. Happy boating!

A friendly reminder that naturally occurring lake weeds should never be pulled up by the root systems. That disturbs the bottom sediments and allows phosphorus and other unwanted nutrients to be released into the water. The guidance from NH DES for aquatic vegetation is to leave it be, and not remove it. If it becomes problematic in a swim area or around a boat slip causing significant  problems, then a discrete amount of vegetation can be cut to open a narrow path. Any vegetation that is cut must be removed from the lake.

Enjoy the lake and be well.
The PLA

BONNYMAN ROAD, WAKE BOATS & SPRING CLEANING

We hope you and your loved ones are managing during this difficult COVID19 time. It has been challenging in so many ways and we all look to the future to when we can return to more normal times and activities.
There are several items we would like to share with you regarding our lake. You have the opportunity to provide your input to the relevant organizations.
1. Bonnyman Road: Those of you who use Bonnyman Rd realize it is not in the best condition. This has been an ongoing issue for quite a long time in several regards concerning road condition, erosion, and related water quality issues. The PLA has worked with the Towns of Wakefield and Effingham and AWWA regarding shoreline erosion and remediation projects on Bonnyman Rd, yet there is more that could be done and we look to support that future effort. At this time and more specifically, you can provide direct input to the Town of Wakefield by completing a road complaint form. The website of the Wakefield Highway / Public Services is:  https://www.wakefieldnh.com/highway  We would encourage anyone who uses Bonnyman Rd, regardless of what town you reside in, to provide this input to the Town of Wakefield.
2. Wake Boats: It is the collective opinion of the PLA, that wake boats on our lake would cause both water quality and invasive issues to be exacerbated. Larger wakes in our shallow lake would increase erosion and release a significant amount of phosphorus from the sediment. This phosphorus would be suspended in the water column and drive further cyanobacteria blooms. There is also great concern regarding milfoil being introduced to the lake from the wake boat tanks (we are presently free of milfoil).  Wake boats on Province Lake typically operate in other adjacent lakes, which all have invasive milfoil problems. In our opinion, the potential for introducing milfoil into Province waters is unacceptably high. With an average depth of 10 feet, the lake would be colonized by milfoil, rendering the lake unusable for all recreational activities. 

That being said, the following from NH Lakes provides you with the opportunity to provide input on wake boats.
‘Wake boats (those that use ballast water to lower the transom and increase the wake height for wake surfing) have been the subject of a legislative study commission. NH LAKES has been serving on this study commission created by House Bill 137 a year ago. Although the study commission has stopped meeting, we expect it will still issue a report by June 30, 2020. During the past few weeks, individuals have been writing or emailing the commission chair, expressing support or concern about the use or impact of wake boats on New Hampshire’s waterbodies.
Whether you enjoy wake boating or have concerns about impacts from wake boats on your favorite lake, the wake boat study commission needs to hear from you! Please email and share your personal testimony with the wake boat study commission chair, Representative Suzanne Smith at Suzanne.Smith@leg.state.nh.us. Provide factual information about how these watercraft have been for your enjoyment, or if you have observed these watercraft to have caused problems. Please reach out now. It is essential for the wake boat commission to hear from our membership community.’
3. As we are all anticipating the arrival of better weather and enjoying our lake in all it has to offer, please follow guidelines for managing your properties in ways that do not encourage erosion and degradation of water quality (see our spring newsletter for details). Spring clean up and litter collection is always encouraged, in a socially distance manner of course. 
Many thanks for your support of Province Lake. Be healthy and stay well.

Lorie for the PLA

BABY LOON UPDATE

As reported last Fall, … following the unexpected death of our Province Lake loon chick in mid-August, the body was transported to the Loon Preservation Center for examination.

They had the veterinary team at Tufts examine the bird.  The findings were:

This loon was necropsied in December at Tufts by Mark Pokras. 

  1. A healthy female in good body condition (2.1 kg, precisely average for a healthy chick that age (about 33 days after hatch)).
  2. No evidence of ingested fishing tackle or human-caused problems. 
  3. Extensive trauma was the cause of death.  

John Cooley, Senior Biologist at LPC added:

All of the specific findings at necropsy were consistent with the observations that an intruding loon likely killed the chick.  Interestingly, this case was necropsied on the same day as another loon chick, from Kanasatka Lake in Center Harbor, NH.  In that case, people on the lake had watched a bald eagle attack the chick, so we were pretty sure of the cause, but Mark noted that the signs of trauma were very similar in the two cases.  I do not think this suggests that an eagle was the culprit at Province Lake. 

Thank you to everyone involved in monitoring last year’s nest and loon family, and in reporting the loss of the chick.  We are transferring tissue samples from this loon to UNH for cyanotoxin testing.

I know the cyanotoxin results will be of interest, because the loon chick was born and raised on Province Lake during the season when cyanobacteria were active, and I will keep you posted if I hear those results from UNH over the course of the spring and early summer.