The Lake Manitou Association contracted with a Consulting Limnologist Dr. Wallace E. Fusilier, PH. D. from Water Quality Investigators from 1993 to 2000 to conduct a detailed assessment of our lake. In 2000 the lake study included an Algal study of the lake.
The 1993 study is 189 pages long with multiple fold-out maps. The 1993-2000 Update is 21 pages and the Algal study is 4 pages. The Algal study is included in the 1993-2000 Water Quality Studies document below. 1993 – 2000 Lake Study: Lake Study 2000
The following report explains the science of lakes and the terms used in the Lake Study. It is written by Byron Shaw, Christine Mechenich and Lowell Klessig. Form RP-03/2004. Understanding Lake Data
2011 Fish Survey: Fish Survey 2011
Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program
In summary these reports inform us that between 1995 to 2014 we have 4 feet less water clarity when looking into the water.
The earlier lake studies and current water monitoring reports inform us that Lake Manitou has elevated phosphorus levels, much higher than many other Michigan lakes that tested for phosphorus.
Algae blooms were noted by Dr. Fusilier and many long time lake residents mention that algae blooms are fairly common, especially in the Spring and Fall. Blue Green algae (actually a bacteria) was identified in the lake in 2015 and 2016. Blue Greens’ in high enough concentration are harmful to health of humans and pets.
E. Coli water testing began in 2016 at In-lake shorelines and at water inlets to Lake Manitou. The Hardy Jennings water inlet at Waugh road is identified as carrying concentrations of animal and human E. Coli during times of high volume water flow. It is also a source of high concentrations of phosphorus and soil sediment. Efforts are being undertaken to mitigate these pollutants.
Goals for Lake Manitou residents: Discourage fertilizing of lakeside lawns. Consider buffer zones at the lake shore where there is no cutting of grass and native plants/flowers are added which have deep root systems. Regular pumping and maintenance of lakeside home septic tanks. Lake and stream water quality monitoring to identify trends, contaminants. Lake water quality improvement. Continued effort to obtain remediation of Hardy-Jennings Drain to eliminate or substantially reduce non point source pollution inputs of soil sediment, phosphorus and E. Coli.