Pleasant Lake in Walworth County has had moderate trouble preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS) to their lake. With help from DNR, they hope to keep their spring fed lake as healthy as possible by preventing the intrusion of other species into their lake. The lake has received four DNR grants in the past to help manage water quality and stave off the spread of invasive species common to nearby lakes.
In 2007, Pleasant Lake received a small scale lake planning grant to examine the lake’s water quality and create an aquatic plant management plan. Small scale lake planning grants are the first step in creating an efficient lake management plan. They help the residents gather necessary lake information in order to assess its current status and future management needs. If the past and current states of the lake are recorded, any future changes in the lake can be detected and diagnosed.
In 2010, Pleasant Lake received a DNR aquatic invasive species early detection and rapid response grant. Unlike maintenance and containment grants, this grant promotes creating detection and response plans specific to the lake and the available resources.
In 2011, with aquatic invasive species plans and procedures in place, Pleasant Lake received a Clean Boats, Clean Waters grant. The Clean Boats, Clean Waters (CBCW) program helps volunteers on lakes communicate proper boat inspection and cleaning techniques. In addition, CBCW volunteers monitor the local boat launch where they talk with boaters and monitor their AIS prevention steps as they leave and enter the lake.
Boaters with poor boat hygiene practices are educated on proper cleaning and maintenance procedures they can use to help stop the spread of invasives. Data on the number of boaters and where they have recently boated are collected by the volunteers and entered into a statewide DNR database. The data help DNR monitor the general movement of boaters, and any invasive critters that may have been on board.
In 2012, the Pleasant Lake Association used data obtained with its first lake planning grant and successfully applied for another grant to study water levels and the lake’s outlet pipe replacement options.
Since 2007, when their first small scale planning grant was received, Pleasant Lake has undertaken studies to better manage their lake. Their vigilance at the boat landing has resulted in no new invasive species being found in their lake. With the proper data, and training from DNR staff, the Pleasant Lake Association is taking steps to better manage the lake. Because of these efforts, Pleasant Lake’s outlook is a little more…pleasant.