Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Register Today for the 4th Annual BOAT DECORATING CONTEST!

What would summer and July 4th holiday be without the MPF's BOAT DECORATING CONTEST!

Our judges have been selected, the Board of Directors appropriated the ca$h for the prizes, now all we need are the participants and spectators!

Those of you who have participated in the past know the competition is fun and fierce!  All are invite to enter their vessel in the competition or just meet at Blueberry Island and join the fun!    This year the contest will be held on Saturday, July 6th at 2:00 PM.    To be eligible for prizes, register today at

Be creative!  All vessels are welcome - in past years we've had entries from paddle boats and kayaks, to rowboats and jetskis, to ski boats and pontoon boats - we've had them all.  So join the fun!

 Here's a few of our past entries!

WATERLEVEL UPDATE Wednesday, June 19th: Lake waterlevel at FULL+.

This morning the Town reports 6" of water is flowing over the flashboards as we keep ahead of the rainfall and runoff.

With yesterday's forecast of scattered showers bringing more than expected the level has increased. Goal is to bring down to 1-2" of flow over the boards to maintain full. 5-6 day forecast calling for no rain.  Our dam caretaker remains diligent both at Manchaug Pond dam and downstream.

 Long-term plan is to maintain FULL through summer season - weather permitting.  Questions? Concerns? Ask them here with the MPF.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

All Smiles as BIG Raffle Winner Takes the Ca$h Prize!

Congratulations to our BIG Raffle Winners George and Lynn Carlson-LeBlanc!  Lynn's winning ticket, # 22, was drawn at the recent MPF Spring Social in our reverse raffle surviving over 99 pulls in the losers first drawing.  Given the winner's choice of a trip to anywhere worth up to $5,000 or a check for $4,000 cash,  Lynn took the cash!   Her ticket was purchased from her neighbor Dave Schmidt, MPF President.
Lynn Carlson-LeBlanc with her husband George, receives her prize winnings on the shores of Manchaug Pond from  George "Gig" Cammuso, MPF Fundraising Committee Co-chairman 
The MPF thanks all those who sold and all those who purchased tickets in this fundraising event.  $6,000 was raised to further our work in the protection and enhancement of Manchaug Pond.

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Storm - during and after!

In the afternoon, all sunshine, blue skies and calm water was lost to a sudden storm which came in from the north. Boaters were caught by surprise as thunder and lightening brought rain and wind.   

Once the storm was done, blue skies resumed and a rainbow blessed the skies over Manchaug Pond.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

A Turkey Vulture on Holt Road Sutton

This week a large turkey vulture, with a large fish in its talons, blocked traffic on Holt Road in Sutton on the shores of Manchaug Pond.

Friday, June 14, 2013

WATERLEVEL UPDATE: Friday, June 14th: Waterlevel stable and lake at FULL+

Waterlevel was stable this morning with another 2 1/4" of rainfall received overnight. Level did rise during the day but our dam caretaker remains diligent both at Manchaug Pond dam and downstream. 

Long-term plan is to maintain FULL through summer season - weather permitting. 
Questions? Concerns? Ask them here with the MPF

Flag Day on Manchaug Pond

Flag pole at Blueberry Island
Check this link for information on proper hanging and flag etiquette.   Be ready for July 4th!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Calm with more rain clouds moving in.

This morning the lake remains calm and quiet - a welcome change from yesterday's gale force winds.  Overnight the waterlevel has come down a few inches as our dam owner works to bring the waterlevel to full and address the continued rainfall and runoff.

It is before 11 AM and the raindrops are falling here on Manchaug Pond... rain which the forecast expected to start later this afternoon.

We hear sunshine is the word for the weekend!

WATERLEVEL UPDATE Thursday, June 13th: Low-level GATE OPEN, Waterlevel coming down to FULL.

Overnight the waterlevel has come down with less than an inch of flow over the top flashboard. Raining now with 1 to 3 " expected. Low-level gate is wide open.

Long term plan is to maintain FULL through summer season - weather permitting.  Questions? Concerns? Ask them here with the MPF.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013


An additional 2 1/4" of rain was received yesterday. Low-level gate is wide open and water running over the flashboards to bring waterlevel down to full.  Long term plan is to maintain FULL through summer season - weather permitting.  

Question? Concerns? Ask them here with the MPF.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Mute Swan Nesting at Stevens Pond

This spring, while we were all looking to the Beaton Farm in the northwest, working to make this conservation dream a reality for Manchaug Pond...  a new lake neighbor flew in to our southeast, making Stevens Pond their home: a pair of Mute Swans.

In the cattails on the end of Stevens Pond by the shoreline bordering Parker Road, Sutton, they built their nest some time ago. Would anyone from Stevens Pond give us a report as to the status of the nest with the rise in waterlevel?

You should know that mute swans are not native to North America and considered an invasive species.   MassWildlife reports they were: "Originally brought in from Europe and Asia as ornamental waterfowl to grace the ponds of Long Island estates, some escaped to the wild where they became established, spread up and down the coast and are found in many inland waters. Highly aggressive and territorial, there is evidence that they are displacing native waterfowl and can be destructive to some aquatic habitats, destroying more vegetation than they actually eat."

"Mute swans are protected under state regulations and may not be hunted. They are not protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty as they were placed on a long list of exotic bird species that removed protection under this treaty.  MassWildlife can issue permits in certain situations to addle eggs and destroy mute swans."

Monday, June 10, 2013

WATERLEVEL UPDATE: A BIG MPF thanks to our new dam owner!

A huge Manchaug Pond thank you to the Town of Sutton, our new dam owner, for safely bringing us through tropical storm Andrea. Town staff check and adjusted the dam and waterlevel before, during and after the storm, which meant more than once on Saturday when the most rainfall was realized.

A view of the flow from the Manchaug Pond dam this morning.
We came into this tropical storm at a lower waterlevel allowing us to accept the storm rainfall thereby preventing flooding around the lake and downstream.  

This morning, the low-level gate was opened a few inches more to bring us down in anticipation of the next round of rain and to accommodate the runoff flowing in from the watershed. Once we are past tomorrow and the threat of more rain, the town intends to keep the waterlevel at full  all summer long -  providing the weather cooperates.

Questions? Complaints?   Comment here and we will get you an answer.

Flow at Stevens Pond dam is 8-9 " above their flashboards.

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Sacred Sunday: Safe and Sound on Manchaug Pond!

To our surprise, the little family of ducks went swimming by this late morning on Manchaug Pond.  They made it!

Read about our first encounter in a cove here and about their later adventure over the flashboards of the Manchaug dam here.

Healthy Lake Signs

One of the signs of a healthy waterbody such as Manchaug Pond is the existence of Mayflies.  Short lived, they mature and emerge in June then molt, mate, the females lay eggs and finish their life cycle just in a couple of days.  They are a very important ingredient in the food chain for fish and birds.  Contrary to what they may look like, they do not sting or bite.

It is a welcome sign that spring has arrived when we see them each year!

Saturday, June 08, 2013

MPF Spring Social brings out the winners!

The MPF FUNdrai$ing Committee put on a fabulous Spring Social this year!  

 Our treasurer opened the morning, welcoming all and noting this was the first MPF Spring Social in many years that we were able to report the dam issue settled and the lake at full waterlevel.

  The Breakfast laid out by our Fundraising Committee Events chairman and assistants would put any cruise ship galley to shame!  The baked french toast was the rave, the fruit platter a bouquet of color, and the homemade breads all so scrumptious! Not to be overlooked was the main course of scrambled eggs made on site, bacon, and cheesy hash browns.  Delicious!

  About 50 members, friends and ticket holders gathered in the dining hall of the YMCA Camp Blanchard on the shores of Manchaug Pond.  An update as to current issues and future events was given and we enjoyed a visit with good friends and lake neighbors as well as the excitement of this year's BIG Raffle's reverse drawing.

Fundraising raffle chairman calls the last two ticket holders #s 74 and 22 to offer a split prize.
 The raffle prize was not a boat but a travel voucher to the location of your choice worth up to $5,000 or a cash prize of  $4,000.   99 losing numbers were chosen first  - on the back of airplanes on a world map - before our winning number was chosen.  In the reverse drawing some interesting coincidences came up:  The first number drawn and the second to last were held by the same two individuals who held them in past raffles! The drawing went quickly as attendees dropped out of the game. With only numbers 74 and 22 left, our Raffle Chairman made a call to both ticket holders offering they split the prize - no answers!  So the final winner was drawn - #22, Lynn Carlson-Leblanc!  Contacted later in the day, Lynn has decided to take the ca$h! Special thanks to all who sold tickets, bought tickets and continue to support the MPF as members, friends and donors.  Also thanks to the MPF President who sold the winning ticket!

The BIG Raffle held only one winner, but all had a great morning and it was another win for Manchaug Pond putting $6,000 into the treasury.
The rain of tropical storm Andrea stopped in the morning with blue skies finding Manchaug Pond ready for the summer season.

Water rising! Check your docks, boats and shoreline!

If you haven't, it is time to bail the boats! One lake resident reports bailing at 10 pm, 3 am and again at 5 as a good 4 -5 inches hit the rain gauge.

From 3:30 pm yesterday to 8:00 am this morning the waterlevel has risen 14 inches.  Water is now flowing over the flashboards and is white-water coming out the low-level gate of the dam. With watershed soils saturated, we expect the level to keep rising.

Manchaug the Reservoir is at work!

Friday, June 07, 2013

WATERLEVEL UPDATE Friday, June 7th: Still below the flashboards!

As of 3:30 p.m. today, with only 1 inch of rain received since midnight, the waterlevel remains below the flashboards. Yesterday we had 2 1/2" of board showing and room for another board. The dam owner opened the low level gate this morning to accommodate runoff from the watershed and the expected rainfall from tropical storm Andrea.

Questions? Concerns? Ask them here with the MPF.

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Calling All Friends of Manchaug Pond: MPF SPRING SOCIAL This Saturday!

It is time for the MPF Members and Friends SPRING SOCIAL and BIG RAFFLE Reverse DRAWING!  So if you love Manchaug Pond and would like to support our efforts, join us this Saturday morning between 9 and 11 am to be a part of the fun! 

A BIG BREAKFAST will be served followed by the reverse drawing for our BIG RAFFLE. The menu includes scrambled eggs, bacon, hash browns, baked french toast, homemade muffins and breakfast breads, bagels, fruit, and coffee, juice and bottled water.  This year's raffle features a prize of a travel voucher up to $5,000 or $4,000 ca$h! Tickets will be drawn, losers first, as with our past Big Boat Raffles.

Free to all paid members and friends of MPF! Bring your donation to the social if you haven't yet sent it in or hit the Paypal button on the right of this post.

MPF t-shirts and more will be on sale!  Our Water Quality Educational Exhibit will be available so you can obtain information on our newest grant project, rain gardens, and more!

Questions?  Ask an officer, area representative, or email us!

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

A Mother Duck's Dilemma

Wednesday evening, four young male mallards swam back and forth in the water a few yards out from the dam.

 A female duck stood on the top flashboard clearly in distress - quacking and pacing.

On closer look, over the flashboards was the reason(s) for her concern.  There over the side in the culvert box were her ducklings - at least 9 of them.

The tiny babies couldn't make it back up over the 3 feet or so of flashboards.  The only other alternative was to go downstream to Stevens Pond but they refused to follow their mother as she called from the edge of the 15 ft drop down at the end of the culvert box.  Back and forth they swam from the drop at the end of the culvert to the insurmountable wall of flashboards.

... A boater came by with a hopeful solution... dropping a long plank over the flashboards a ramp was made for all to walk up and hop back into the pond.    Did they make the journey?  With daylight waning, that remains an unknown. 

The boater returned the next morning to find only the plank - no signs of the older brothers, the mother,  or any of the duckings.

If anyone sees this family of mother and 9 babies, either on Manchaug Pond or on Stevens, please let us know.  She was photographed earlier in the week here swimming in the shade and safety of a Manchaug cove.

Monday, June 03, 2013

Small rainbow in tonight's sky!

Mother and baby ducklings

Mother Mallard and duckings in a cove on Manchaug Pond! She was seen out in the open lake yesterday when the water was choppy and crowded with boats. Does anyone have a count as to how many babies?

Sunday, June 02, 2013

A Sacred Sunday Sunset!

While other areas suffered thunderstorms, no rain fell on Manchaug Pond making for a beautiful Sunday on the lake.  A fishing tournament started the day, but it was the campers that later came out in droves to boat Manchaug Pond.


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