Message From The President






  I have owned property here in Findley Lake since 1985.  Other than 1988 when the lake came up a little later than usual I have never experienced anything like this and hope I never will again.  In the last four months the Board has met several times with the discussion being lake level and unusual abundant weed growth.  Here is what we know, what we have done and what we are planning for in the future.
     1.     Nothing was done any different than in the past 15 years since the State of New York replaced the gate and we modified it to allow for lake maintenance level.  We remove the gate, drain it down to normal winter level and install a 2x6 to keep it there.  The ice cleared March 24th and the gate was set March 25th.  This has been our policy since at least 1985.  This winter the lake went down below that level on three occasions to the point that the 2x6 came free and had to be replaced.  It is not unusual for the lake to go down in the summer for short periods of time due to lack of rain but we have never seen it happen in winter.  We have learned that the county has been observing low ground water levels county wide for the last three years.  This past fall our highway supervisor noticed swampy areas adjacent to roads were dry and an active beaver dam was dry.  We had a number of water wells around the lake go dry.  We have only had water well problems associated with lake level in the past when we went to maintenance level.  On top of all of these facts we have been missed by a number of large rain events.  Yesterday a thunderstorm warning was in effect for counties in Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York including Chautauqua County.  Corry Pennsylvania and Sherman New York both received substantial rainfall.  It rained here for ten minuets and it was not a heavy rain.
      Since this lake was gifted to the property owners around the lake in the late 1940's we have always lowered the lake in the winter for dock and break wall protection from ice damage.  Property owners have relied on this policy when planning and building.  If we were to change this policy by not lowering the lake in the winter or not lowering it as much many docks and break walls would be exposed to ice and damage would occur.  The Board of Directors of the Findley Lake Watershed Foundation believes this situation is an anomaly which may never occur again.  We are going to closely monitor the lake level but at this time we have no plans to change what we have been doing successfully for over 70 years.
     2.     We have been experiencing excessive weed growth and algae blooms in Findley Lake since I have been here.  The excessive weed growth and algae blooms are caused by excessive nutrients in the lake and watershed.  Everyone we have engaged to help us mitigate this problem agrees with that hypothesis.  Where there has been disagreement is where  it is coming from and how to either stop it or mitigate the effects of it.  We have shared the results of the survey that was sent out this spring concerning interest in a sewer system around the lake with the Mina Town Board.  They are currently requesting proposals from engineering firms to update our maps and plan to come up with a price for this system and what grant monies are available to offset the costs.  We have contracted with Princeton Hydro to evaluate our current situation and make recommendations for things we can do other than sewers to help improve the quality of the lake and limit the weed growth and algae blooms.
     Due to the low water level we were unable to launch or operate the harvester.  Yesterday we hired a crane and placed the harvester in the lake (something we have never had to do in the past).  We have enough water for limited harvesting.  As water level conditions improve so will our harvesting.  We removed 40% more weed mass last year than in any previous year.  Judging by the condition of the lake we will far exceed that this year even with the shortened harvesting season. 
     As always your support is what makes our work possible.  Members are encouraged to attend our annual meeting July 17th at the Community Center.  Meet and great with refreshments and food starts at 7pm.  Business meeting will start promptly at 7:30pm.


Respectfully
Edward M. Mulkearn, President
  I have owned property here in Findley Lake since 1985.  Other than 1988 when the lake came up a little later than usual I have never experienced anything like this and hope I never will again.  In the last four months the Board has met several times with the discussion being lake level and unusual abundant weed growth.  Here is what we know, what we have done and what we are planning for in the future.
     1.     Nothing was done any different than in the past 15 years since the State of New York replaced the gate and we modified it to allow for lake maintenance level.  We remove the gate, drain it down to normal winter level and install a 2x6 to keep it there.  The ice cleared March 24th and the gate was set March 25th.  This has been our policy since at least 1985.  This winter the lake went down below that level on three occasions to the point that the 2x6 came free and had to be replaced.  It is not unusual for the lake to go down in the summer for short periods of time due to lack of rain but we have never seen it happen in winter.  We have learned that the county has been observing low ground water levels county wide for the last three years.  This past fall our highway supervisor noticed swampy areas adjacent to roads were dry and an active beaver dam was dry.  We had a number of water wells around the lake go dry.  We have only had water well problems associated with lake level in the past when we went to maintenance level.  On top of all of these facts we have been missed by a number of large rain events.  Yesterday a thunderstorm warning was in effect for counties in Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York including Chautauqua County.  Corry Pennsylvania and Sherman New York both received substantial rainfall.  It rained here for ten minuets and it was not a heavy rain.
      Since this lake was gifted to the property owners around the lake in the late 1940's we have always lowered the lake in the winter for dock and break wall protection from ice damage.  Property owners have relied on this policy when planning and building.  If we were to change this policy by not lowering the lake in the winter or not lowering it as much many docks and break walls would be exposed to ice and damage would occur.  The Board of Directors of the Findley Lake Watershed Foundation believes this situation is an anomaly which may never occur again.  We are going to closely monitor the lake level but at this time we have no plans to change what we have been doing successfully for over 70 years.
     2.     We have been experiencing excessive weed growth and algae blooms in Findley Lake since I have been here.  The excessive weed growth and algae blooms are caused by excessive nutrients in the lake and watershed.  Everyone we have engaged to help us mitigate this problem agrees with that hypothesis.  Where there has been disagreement is where  it is coming from and how to either stop it or mitigate the effects of it.  We have shared the results of the survey that was sent out this spring concerning interest in a sewer system around the lake with the Mina Town Board.  They are currently requesting proposals from engineering firms to update our maps and plan to come up with a price for this system and what grant monies are available to offset the costs.  We have contracted with Princeton Hydro to evaluate our current situation and make recommendations for things we can do other than sewers to help improve the quality of the lake and limit the weed growth and algae blooms.
     Due to the low water level we were unable to launch or operate the harvester.  Yesterday we hired a crane and placed the harvester in the lake (something we have never had to do in the past).  We have enough water for limited harvesting.  As water level conditions improve so will our harvesting.  We removed 40% more weed mass last year than in any previous year.  Judging by the condition of the lake we will far exceed that this year even with the shortened harvesting season. 
     As always your support is what makes our work possible.  Members are encouraged to attend our annual meeting July 17th at the Community Center.  Meet and great with refreshments and food starts at 7pm.  Business meeting will start promptly at 7:30pm.


Respectfully
Edward M. Mulkearn, President