Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program
The Cooperative Lakes Monitoring (acronym CLMP) is a coordinated effort sponsored by Michigan Lakes and Stream Association, the Department of Natural Resources and Environment, Michigan State University, the Great Lakes Commission, and the Huron River Watershed Council.
Volunteers train with the above named entities at the annual Michigan Lakes and Streams meeting. They learn how to conduct a variety of tests that help to measure water quality. Following is a description of the tests that Deer Lake volunteers participate in:
Summary of Deer Lake’s Involvement
- To date four Riparians have taken the training.
- In 2005 we began Secchi Disk Readings, Spring and Summer Total Phosphorus and Chlorophyll
- In 2007 we included Dissolved Oxygen thru 2010
- In 2009 we did the Aquatic Plant Mapping of the Exotics
These tests taken together help us determine the water quality of the lake. The results are published in the CLMP Annual Summary and are reported in a classification scheme that allows for comparisons. The indexes most widely used are Carlson’s Tropic State Index. They allow us to determine the state of our lake. This data if collected over many years is useful in documenting changes and trends. Most importantly this data assists us with the management of our Deer Lake.
The DLPOA (Deer Lake Property Owner’s Association) in accordance with the Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program has been monitoring Deer Lake for the past 5 years, and below is a summary of the results.
Background and affiliates
The current program represents data collection of 220 Lakes in the State of Michigan. Standard equipment and metrics are used under the direction of the Department of Natural Resources and Department of Environment Quality (now referred to as DNRE).
Dissolved Oxygen & Water Temperature
Exotic Aquatic Plant Watch
Weekly, May – September
Early & Late Summer
Monthly, May – September
Monthly, May – September
Deer Lake is the only Lake in Oakland County that participates in all of the above. Oakland County lakes that participate in some of the above mentioned testing are Hawk, Lakeville, Middle Straits, Orion, Parke, Taylor and North Buckhorn.
Methods & Results:
There is a standard measurement (Carlson’s Trophic State Index) that provides a comparison to the 4 stages of lakes. A good analogy would be the measurement of hurricane categories 1 thru 5, with 5 being the most destructive.
The Carlson metric identifies 4 categories: Oligotrophic, Mestrophic, Eutrophic and Hypereutrophic. The first (Oligotrophic) is a lake with minimal plant life, very pristine with high oxygen and low chlorophyll & phosphorus levels. Deer Lake is an Oligotrophic Lake. Moving down the scale to the fourth type of lake called Hypereutrophic. This is the worst condition and would be very weedy (beyond chemical control) high amounts of phosphorus and Chlorophyll and little to no dissolved oxygen.
Deer lake water quality is rare for a lake located in South East Michigan. Deer lake readings for oxygen, chlorophyll and phosphorus are excellent.
The DLPOA Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program Volunteers will continue to test our lake yearly to ensure we can identify any problems that may move the lake out of the Oligotrophic stage.
Information provided by DLPOA Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program Volunteers:
Sharon Hurlbert, Elizabeth Wagner, Rob Namowicz, Rick Gutowski, Fred Daris, Rick Remstad and Ken Gill
Higgins Lake (Roscommon Co.)
Lake Diane (Hillsdale Co.)
As you can see Deer Lake and Higgins Lake have plenty of oxygen. May 2010 readings for Deer Lake went to 55 feet and produce almost the same level of oxygen. Oxygen at 1 foot was 9.0 and 8.0 at 55 feet. Notice the zero oxygen level at 22 feet on the last example Lake Diane. This lake is in the Hypereutrophic stage. The DNRE charted our dept at 24feet and we always report down to 55 feet. We investigated and they will correct the depth reading at their next reporting. To see data on all 220 lakes go to www.micorps.net and click on data exchange tab and then click on view data.