Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Which future for Hawksnest?

Will we see this sign, sometime in the future, at Hawksnest Pond?

............................................................................
Public Health Notice
Due to a toxic algae bloom
Documented by the University of Massachusetts
Individuals and animals
Should not wade or swim or otherwise use Hawksnest Pond
until further notice
Harwich Health Department
............................................................................
 
You'd think ponds on Nantucket would be safe, with the island so far out in the ocean.  But no.  Look what's happening to Hummock Pond...

Photo, thanks to permission from The Nantucket Independent

Read more about how septic system runoff is harming Hummock Pond.  We can prevent this from happening at Hawksnest, if we act together now.

At Long Pond, in 2007 they were proposing alum treatment to stop the algae blooms and fish kills.  The treatment was to cost $420,000--yet they didn't even have a management plan for how to prevent the nutrients from accumulating again.  Just think what we could do with $420,000 spent on prevention of the problem, instead of closing the barn door after the horse has escaped.

At Hawksnest, let's spend a little now on prevention, before the problem occurs.

I'm involved at Hawksnest, because I've seen where we could be headed.  I now live in southern Wisconsin, where most of our lakes and ponds are sick, like the ones in the aerial photos below:


Runoff after a storm dumps sediment and nutrients into Lake Mendota. This is now starting to happen on a small scale at Hawksnest Pond.


The nutrients from storm runoff and from septic systems lead to algae blooms.  Once this happens, most nutrients stay put.  The lake cannot be cured.  This disease of lakes is called "eutrophication."


Some of our small ponds get this bad, covered with duckweed.

So, Harwich, which kind of pond do you prefer?
The three examples above...?  or, Hawksnest as it still is...


Get involved now.  Send your name & contact information to DavidThompson20@aol.com.  I'll let you know how you can help.

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