Love our Lakes! Become LakeSmart!
Whether we are swimming, boating, fishing, birdwatching, or just relaxing on the shore, we all treasure our time at Pushaw Lake or Pushaw Pond. While we appreciate the beauty and peace that lake living provides, we need to be aware of how our lakeshore living directly affects the lake and the potential harm we can cause if we are not careful. LakeSmart is a program developed by the Maine Lakes Society to protect our lakes by teaching us how to control pollutants from entering the lake which hurt the water quality, fish and animal populations.
Several new resources are available to support efforts to protect our lake:
- LakeSmart Brochure/Poster
- Protect Your Pond
- The LakeSmart Laker's Dozen
- Caring for Your Septic
- Common Shrubs of Central Maine Shorelines
What is harming our lakes?
PHOSPHORUS! From fertilizer, soil, animal waste, cleaners, pesticides to eroded soil from yards, farms, septic systems, and roads, phosphorus is the #1 pollutant.
Did you know?
- Phosphorus in the lake causes algae blooms which turn the lake green and reduce oxygen levels which choke fish.
- Phosphorus levels in Pushaw Lake have been increasing over the past 10 years (see 2016 and 2017 GPLA Water Quality Reports) based on data collected by GPLA volunteers.
- Pushaw Lake experienced an algae bloom in July 2017...see photo below right.
- Runoff from developed land can contribute 5 -10 times more phosphorus than from forested land.
- Fertilizers are banned within 25 feet of a lake but should be applied at least 50 feet from a body of water. Fertilizers with no phosphorus are best.
- 90% of what goes into a lake stays in a lake.
- Lakeside property values are linked to lake quality so as water quality declines your property value decreases.
"Our efforts to make our property on Pushaw Lake more lake-friendly were recognized by the LakeSmart program implemented by the Greater Pushaw Lake Association. We completed measures to reduce soil runoff around our camp which included stabilizing areas of water flow from our camp roof, out buildings and driveway, as well as the ditch carrying water from across Beechwood Ave to the lake; and, improving our lake-side buffer. We were very proud to receive our LakeSmart award and signs." --- Dorli and Lou Cloutier