Tree Swallows return to Park Lake

Tree Swallows return to Park Lake
Tree Swallows LOVE the new Fishing Dock!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Spring is here!

With spring comes the wonderful rain of life. That perfect rain, charged with nitrogen by the lightning from the thunderstorm itself. Greenery seems to spring out of the ground overnight, and grass grows inches a day. With all of this recent rain, the lake is at some of it's highest levels since 1947, when the "normal" lake level was officially established by the Michigan governmental department that is now the DNR. That level was 845 feet above sea level. As of the end of April of this year, Park Lake's level stood at 844.5 feet, and stood very nicely.

Part of our on-going efforts to sustain Park Lake's health and longevity has been to to focus on maintaining lake levels. In past years, lake levels have fallen unhealthily low, allowing unusually high weed growth caused by the increased sunlight penetration into the shallower waters.  We need help both personally and governmental to repair our water-control structure on the southwest corner of the lake. Initially built and installed in 1947 by the Park Lake Improvement League, it has now fallen into a sad state of disrepair, and our precious lake water freely flows around it and into the Looking Glass watershed at an alarming rate.

Funds are desperately needed to pay for engineering studies to determine the best and most cost-effective ways to implement the needed repairs to our water-control structure and related levees.

If we can manage the much needed repairs, and maintain water levels, Park Lake's present and future residents, as well as our natural residents will flourish.  Please help us with your membership. We also need dedicated volunteers for trustee positions, which will be determined at our June 8th election meeting.

Friday, April 8, 2011

SPRING PEEPERS!!

  • The western chorus and spring peepers are "peepin' away" around the lake!  You will REALLY notice them this weekend if you go out and listen after dark.  These are those little teeny-weeny frogs that puff out their throat when peeping for a mate. If you are very careful, and have a good flashlight, you "may" catch a glimpse of one or more near the shore around the cattails after dark.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

WATERFOWL !!

The lake opened up a few days ago, and already there are 100's and 100's of ducks and other waterfowl on the open water!  Just today, I saw, Bluebill (Scaup), Goldeneye, Bufflehead, Ringneck, Hooded Merganser, and even a couple Canvasbacks. Of course there were also many Canadian Geese and 3 pairs of Mute Swans too.  Also have seen many Sandhill Cranes making their way to the lake as well. I'm sure it was most probably this miserable weather that brought them in in these quantities; I wouldn't want to fly in this weather either!  Should have a few pics to post tomorrow.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Round-the-Lake Nature Trail Project

Following our work at the Quietwater Symposium at Michigan State University, we are continuing our strives to raise awareness and support for the proposed round-the-lake non-motorized hiking trail. We feel strongly that this project would be the greatest benefit to Bath and surrounding community's students of all ages, and all individuals that have a desire to learn more about Michigan's environment as it relates to wetlands and wilderness habitat including bogs.

Several programs at Michigan State University already utilize Park Lake's accessible shoreline to inspect and discover it's wealth of natural resources. MSU's Fisheries and Wildlife management departments regularly hold outdoor classes at the lake to better give students a "feel" for their environment on a first-hand basis.

Help us to promote this very worthwhile project for the community by voicing your support of "Friends of Park Lake".  Membership is NOT required to participate, but it does help us further our support of the surrounding environment by sponsoring significant projects in and around Bath's largest park, PARK LAKE.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Spring is less than 1 week away!!

With the temperature near 50 degrees today, and the ice on Park Lake beginning to disappear in earnest, all of the wildlife (including us) are just "itching" for the lake to open up and the temps to begin to climb. Many species of birds have been spotted already around the lake, including several pairs of Sandhill cranes, Turkey vultures, Red-wing Blackbirds, as well as Eastern Bluebirds.

If you have more sightings to share, please post a comment!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Robins!

Spotted my first Robins of the year yesterday!  A group of 6 near the corner of State & Park Lake Rd. Spring is officially only 10 days away!  I am sooo tired of winter.  The ice on Park Lake is already beginning to leave. A good sign of that is when you see muskrats sitting on the ice. They locate the earliest possible holes in the ice and enlarge them enough to begin feeding in earnest. I have seen about 1/2 dozen muskrats in various areas of the lake since last week.

Don Parkey also mentioned seeing a Coyote out on the frozen lake actually chasing a feral housecat! Guess there will be one less cat out there eating our songbirds as of tomorrow......Coyotes LOVE housecats.....