October Harvesting Postcard

Black Lake Special District

To: Black Lake waterfront property owner

Weed Harvesting
Our permit for weed harvesting was finally approved on 9/16, 64 days after the start of the approval process. At this late date, we will not proceed with harvesting as the Najas (or water nymph) will be dormant within the next few days. The permit does allow us to harvest from 7/1 to 9/30 for the next five years. We are also allowed to cut and remove the fragrant white water lily during the same cutting period. You can see the full permit and its provisions at Blacklakespecialdistrict.org.

Blue-Green Algae
A work group is forming to look into solutions for algae blooms. If you would like to participate please email us at info@blacklakespecialdistrict.org or call (360) 867-8814.

Letters of Concern
A letter has been sent to Thurston County expressing concern about the maintenance of the Black Lake Ditch. The ditch is becoming choked with vegetation and beaver dams have reappeared. Flooding of lower elevation properties can occur this winter.

Fish Pond Creek, a major water source to Black Lake, is reported to have high levels of fecal coliform. A letter was sent to Thurston County and the City of Tumwater; we want to better understand the problem and what is or can be done.________________________________________

Back Lake Algae Sampling, Testing and Health Alert Advisories as of October 2014

Back Lake Algae Sampling, Testing and Health Alert Advisories
as of October 2014
Sue Davis with Thurston County’s Environmental Health described the processes as follows:
* Thurston County is required to follow the Washington Department of Health testing and alert
protocols.
* When Environmental Health is contacted about an algae bloom, staff take samples in areas with the
highest concentrations of algae.
* The samples are FedEx’ed to a lab in King County. Results are made available in 5 days. The delay
is largely due to the testing process. If the sample shows harmful toxin levels, a Health Alert Advisory
is published.
* Samples are taken and tested once a week following a health alert. When two successive weeks
show toxin levels to be safe (or algae has dissipated), the Health Alert Advisory is lifted.
* The minimum period for a Health Alert Advisory is usually 3 weeks.
* Many areas of the lake where algae is not present are safe during a Health Alert Advisory.
* Areas of the lake with algae should be avoided even when a Health Alert is not in effect.
* Algae testing results for Washington lakes can be found at: https://www.nwtoxicalgae.org/Data.aspx

BLACK LAKE TOXIC ALGAE HEALTH ADVISORY 8/4/14

The toxin level for microcystin was 162 micrograms/L in a sample collected on July 29, 2014, which is above the safe level.  The state recreational advisory level is 6 micrograms.

Here is an article that describes what toxic algae is and why it’s a health risk.  Just bathe yourself and your animals after going in the lake.  http://www.co.thurston.wa.us/health/ehadm/swimming/pdf/BGAlgae.pdf

Naja Harvesting

ATTN: Black Lake waterfront property owners

Your newly formed Black Lake Special District is preparing to provide aquatic plant harvesting services (mowing) on the lake. Work will be performed to pick up weed mats and cut submerged plants. The target plant is water nymph (Najas).

Naja is a native weed that is at nuisance levels on the lake. Recently this weed has become prevalent and is restricting boating, swimming, and fishing on the lake. Harvesting will improve lake conditions immediately.

Harvesting will last 6 hours per day for up to five days, with cutting depth of 0-7 feet. The work will be performed beyond the end of docks on and around Black Lake. Work between the docks and shore will only be performed in areas where conditions are considered low risk by the operator of the equipment.

IF YOU DO NOT WANT THE HARVESTER to be active in or around your dock or have any questions, please call 360-867-8814 or email Info@BlackLakeSpecialDistrict.org.

We encourage you to send us your e-mail address so we can keep you informed of our activities and our meeting schedule as well as save on mailing costs. Our next public meeting is August 21st at 1520-A Irving Street SW.