Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Great Boating Weekend? Check for Weeds Washed up on the Beach!

On Monday morning around the lake one just needs to take a look at their beach to know whether or not it was a big boating weekend on Manchaug Pond!

With the weeds growing up and the waterlevel going down - the plants are easily severed by motor boats.  The plant fragments wash in and pile up on the shore with waves bringing in more and more.  As the waterlevel inches down, ribbons of dried plants form on the sand. 

Two invasive aquatic weed species are dominant:  variable milfoil and tape-grass.

Variable milfoil (Myriophyllum heterophyllum)

Tape-grass or wild celery (Vallisneria americana)

 Variable milfoil grows in dense beds reaching up to the water's surface. Milfoil spreads rapidly, crowding out our native species, and blocking sunlight and oxygen.

Tape-grass is now flowering, sending up long spiraling stems we see at the surface.


What do you do with the wheelbarrows full of weeds that wash ashore?  Options include composting, bagging and bringing to a composting area at the town transfer station, or drying for incineration.

CONTROL: Since weeds have seeds and the plant fragments of some species can grow roots starting new plants, it is best to remove from the lake and dispose of.  A rocky beach and shore is best - it is also illegal to bring sand into the lake - need permission from Conservation Commission and DEP.

Lake-level drawdown  has been employed since 1991 to control the weeds around the shoreline.

Clean boat motors of any plant fragments when coming from a different lake or going to a new lake to prevent introducing a new species.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sacred Sunday: Yesterday Morning's Bird Sightings

Adult Great Blue Heron on the dock
Osprey flying over rescue drill

Cormorant on the dock

Heron in flight

Two juvenile Great Blue Herons on Blueberry Island

Saturday, August 28, 2010

ONLY A DRILL! Two Men in the Water and One Under

Remember, this is ONLY A DRILL! 

This morning at 7:45 a mock boat accident took place here on Manchaug Pond as part of a Boating Accident/Water Rescue Drill - "a joint operation between the Sutton Fire Department, the Douglas Police Dive Rescue Team and the Manchaug Pond Association."

  The accident resulted in two injured victims in the water and a third yet to be found.  With morning air and water temperatures both at about 57 degrees F, it was a cold morning indeed to be the two men in the water awaiting rescuers.

Sutton Fire Dept. first to respond.

Arriving at the State Boat Ramp on Torrey Road, the Sutton Fire Dept with the police boat and the Fire Dept's boat was the first on the scene.

  Later the Douglas Dive Team arrived to search for "Dolly" the rescue dummy.

The Fire Dept. reports the drill "is intended to test the procedures of, and readiness of the parties involved. "

Only a Drill!

One hour from now, right here on Manchaug Pond, volunteers from the Manchaug Pond Association (MPA) will assist the Sutton and Douglas Fire Dept. and the Douglas Dive Team in a rescue drill/training.  Victims will be in the water awaiting rescue,  the rescue dummy drowned and sunk in dark water, and a panicked witness on shore to aide fire departments' personnel in the rescue and recovery.

Sutton Police boat
As you see the fire trucks and rescue boats arrive on the water, please stay way back.  Tell your neighbors this is only a training/drill.

The MPA will post details and photos right here!  Further, we'll let you know if it is Rescue Jennifer, Rescue Randy or Resuscitator Annie who has drowned.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Thursday's Post and is "Anyone having internet problems today?

I posted Thursday about an opportunity for a $100,000 grant opportunity for a national or state by the Coca-Cola Company. Today the text is gone and replaced various codes.  I put more text up and home it will stay.

Another site I visited wrote on Thursday:

"Anyone having internet problems today?

Earlier today, on and off, I had some real problems with use of the internet.  Some sites wouldn’t load, and others would. I had particular problems with loading anything from a Google search.

Did you have this experience?
Did something happen out there?"

Attacks to the internet are high in the United States. Visit this site to see the world map.

Something definitely happened to internet traffic on Thursday. Look at the graphs on this site.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

VOTE Today for your favorite park! Purgatory Chasm and Douglas State Forest

Purgatory Chasm, Sutton  zip code is 01590

National and state parks have an opportunity to win $100,000 from the Coca-Cola Foundation.

Douglas State Forest-zip code 01516
Visit this site (or click the post title) to cast your vote for your favorite park! http://www.livepositively.com/#/americasparks 

Everyone needs to participate, pass the work, and must vote often if a local park is to win!

Purgatory Chasm? or Douglas State Forest? 

Who will the winner be?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Don't Forget to Bail the Boat!

It is amazing how much this slow and steady rainfall the past few days can add up in your boat! Don't forget to bail during and at the end of the rainstorms!

You might have a bilge pump system or some other fancy bailer you bought at the marina but if you don't here's directions from "how to do things.com" on how to make the easiest and cheapest boat bailer!

A 2009 rain event where a 5 gallon bucket did the trick!
"The easiest boat bailer to make consists of a one gallon plastic jug, cut in half along a horizontal line below the handle. One gallon milk jugs are the most common plastic bottles used to make a boat bailer, but other types of plastic bottles will work just as well. Discard the lower half of the jug and use the upper half with the handle and spout. It is a good idea to use this end of the jug because the handle makes it easy to bail water out of a sinking boat rapidly and is a good point to tie one end of a string to and the other end to the boat. This will ensure that the bailer does not float away in the event of heavy seas while taking on water. Just make sure that you don't throw away the screw-on top! Without it, your bailer will not bail water from your boat very well."

Monday, August 23, 2010

Guest Speaker, Rep. Jen Callahan, No Stranger to Manchaug Pond and Our Issues

Saturday, the YMCA Camp Blanchard Dining Hall on the shores of Manchaug Pond was once again the location of this year's annual meeting of the members.


Reports and updates from the president, treasurer, secretary and committee chairmans were given on topics ranging from water quality and the stormwater grant to boating safety and invasive species to the events held and planned for the fall. The Manchaug Pond Foundation, 501c3 public charity, was introduced with all its benefits in addressing current needs and future issues.

Also an election year, our Nominating Committee Chairman and 2nd Vice President presented a slate of officers and directors/area representatives approved by the membership for the 2010-12 term.

And our speaker,  Representative Jennifer Callahan, is no stranger to Manchaug Pond....  Her door has been open to us,  and she has solidly stood with us advocating, demanding the preservation of Manchaug Pond -  She was there in Boston March 09' as we attended a meeting with state agencies and officials looking at the issues of the lake's waterlevel; on the Manchaug dam April 15 at MassDEP's site evaluation;  at the Sutton Town Hall July 7, 09' at the Mass. Environmental Protection Act (MEPA) Public Hearing.  She has responded to our emails, our phone calls and met with us during our years pushing for historic waterlevels.

And Saturday at our invitation she came to Manchaug Pond once again.  Her presentation was right on target - starting with the history of great ponds and their preservation for the enjoyment of all citizens in the Commonwealth, and our efforts against the breaching of Manchaug Pond and our strong call for its protection by local and state decision makers.  


Following the meeting, we all enjoyed a fabulous lunch of hamburgers, hotdogs and seafood chowder, salads, corn and more with those fudge Helen's Bakery brownies and homemade ice cream.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sacred Sunset

Thanks to the Facebook photographer who sent in this sunset photo from earlier in the week.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

43rd Annual Meeting of the Members THIS Saturday!

Attention all members!

Just a reminder that the Manchaug Pond Association will hold its 43rd Annual Meeting this Saturday,
 August 21, 2010 at the YMCA Camp Blanchard facility on Manchaug Road, Sutton.

We'll begin at 10:30, visit with lake neighbors and friends over a coffee or ice tea (punch for the children), purchase your flares for the Labor Day lighting of the shoreling event, pick up a registration form for our next fundraising event - The Dam Race, check out the new MPA logo hats (2 color!) and t-shirts (safety orange, black, dusk blue, azalea to name a few!) and view the 319 stormwater grant exhibit will on display with all the handouts to help you around your landscape.

The business meeting will begin with reports and updates (it has been a busy year!) from the committees, board of directors, and president and end with the election of officers and directors for the 2010-2012 term. (If you are interested in serving - give us a call or email.)

This year's speaker is Representative Jennifer Callahan of Sutton. Dr. Callahan is a strong defender of Manchaug Pond working on the state level the past few years with the MPA, Rep Kujawski, and the towns of Sutton and Douglas to preserve the lake through the maintenance of the waterlevel and dam.

12 noon, lunch will be served: our traditional menu of grilled hotdogs, hamburgers, seafood chowder, corn-on-the cob, and more!  and for dessert, Helen's Bakery fudge brownies and homemade ice cream. (Cost to members: $5/person; children $2)

MPA dues are payable at the door or by PayPal (see button on right). 
$60 members and $35 friends. 

Thank you for supporting our efforts together on behalf of Manchaug Pond!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

From the Window of the Camper...

Each of us has our own view of Manchaug Pond; a portrait of the lake framed by a camper window, the porch of a summer camp, the large picture window of a year-round home, or even more simply from the vessel we launch at the state boat ramp.

the view out the back window of our camper...

Advocating for this natural resource is the mission of the Manchaug Pond Association. Founded in 1967, we collectively work "to promote the welfare and correct use of Manchaug Pond and the contiguous area." To deepen our efforts, the MPA formed a 501c3 last October- the Manchaug Pond Foundation.

If you want to do more than look at pretty pictures of the lake while sitting back in your lakeside lawn chair, stand with the members of the MPA by joining today!  For you convenience a PayPal button has been put on this site.  For  $35.  you can become a friend of Manchaug Pond - receive all mailings and meeting notices as well as our new quarterly newsletter SPLASH - or make a donation of any size to help us in our work. Volunteer now - I look forward to hearing from you!

This photo was sent in on Facebook by a seasonal camper of a local campground.  Thank you for capturing a view reminiscent of a cabin in the deep woods of Maine on a secluded pristine lake. 

Let's work together to preserve Manchaug Pond!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Pair of Herons

As the water evaporates, exposing the wall in the channel, a pair of herons drop in to survey the area.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Snapping Turtle

Why did the turtle cross the road?

To get to the other side to lay her eggs.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Cormorant ~ "Sea Crow"

For more information on this waterbird and resident visitor to Manchaug Pond, click the title of this post.

Thank you to the photographer and MPA member who sent these in for all to enjoy!

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Pan Mass Challenge Passing Holbrook's Campground, Sutton

Just in - video from Holbrook's Campground on Manchaug Pond, Sutton
 of the Pan Mass Challenge!  Campers come out in numbers on this cool clear morning to cheer the cyclists on!!

... and those cyclist keep on coming!!

Check the link for the route from Sturbridge to Provincetown!


Special thanks to the owner of The Old Holbrook Place Campground for the just in photo and video!

Friday, August 06, 2010

Heads Up! Pan Mass Challenge tomorrow

Tomorrow morning starting around 7:30AM Manchaug Pond will have some very energetic lake admirers bicycling from Sturbridge to Bourne then to Provincetown on Sunday to raise money for the Jimmy Fund. There are several possible two and one day routes but I think ours is the most scenic! If you are an early bird, join me by boat at the north shore of the lake to cheer them on.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Highlights of the Aerial Tour of Manchaug Pond

From an elevation of 1530 which is about 1000 feet in the sky, here is Manchaug Pond!

Blueberry Island

YMCA Camp Blanchard Boat House and Beach

Swenson's Island

State Public Access Boat Ramp on left and a campground on right

Manchaug Pond Dam

Very special thanks to the MPA Board members, the pilot and the photographer, for this unique opportunity to view our beloved lake from above!

Monday, August 02, 2010

Blimp at 12:00!

At 11:30 a call came in, "Do you have your camera ready?!" as a blimp was flying over Douglas headed toward Manchaug Pond. Minutes later it showed itself on the northern side of the lake.

Here's a closeup as it passes over Waters Farm.

Christmas in July on Manchaug Pond

Saturday while the campers at King's Family Campground were having a merry old time celebrating Christmas in July with their strings of lights, mistletoe and games, blowup Santas, jolly music into the night, and more.....

..... the Big Guy was flying over Manchaug Pond with his sights on the Christmas Tree at Blueberry Island.

Hmmm... naughty or nice... wonder if he had his list with him.

Tell me... did the campers at the Old Holbrook Place get all the presents?


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