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Burntside Lake Association

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Summary of 2016 Burntside Lake Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Prevention Plan

In early 2016, the Burntside Lake Association was granted $189,000 to implement a plan to prevent the spread of AIS into (and out of) Burntside Lake and to raise awareness and understanding of AIS issues in the Ely area.  Our principal goals and results of our activities are summarized below. 

  1. Expand launch site inspection and education programs at the Van Vac Road and other public landings on Burntside.
    1. Performed 2,193 boat inspections on Burntside.
    2. Inspectors educated boaters about the importance of AIS prevention and handed out information, bobbers, key floats, etc., as reminders.
       
  2. Provide free boat-cleaning facilities for boaters going in and out of Burntside and other Ely-area lakes.  Completed 132 boat cleanings at Van Vac landing and at the Ely Chamber. 
     
  3. Improve public awareness and education on Burntside Lake and throughout the Ely area focusing on boaters who intend to launch their boats on any of the Ely-area lakes.
    1. Distributed brochures, posters and “Clean, Drain, Dry” bobbers, coasters and key floats to nearly every retail establishment in downtown Ely.
    2. With the great assistance of the Ely Chamber, we distributed similar materials to about 50 Chamber-member resorts around Ely.
    3. Posted “Clean, Drain, Dry” banners along Sheridan Street to expand awareness.
    4. Sent all Burntside property owners information on how to prevent the spread of AIS.
    5. Redesigned the Burntside Lake website to include educational materials and other information about how to keep AIS out of Burntside.
    6. Ran weekly ads in the Ely Angler to let residents and visitors know where they could clean their boats.
       
  4. Build partnerships throughout the Ely area to expand our reach in spreading the word about the importance of AIS prevention.
    1. Formed the Ely Area Invasive Teams (EAIT) to help expand (AIS) awareness and education beyond Burntside.  To date, this group includes members from the BLA, White Iron Chain of Lakes, Eagles Nest Township Lake Association, Shagawa Lake, Bear Island Lake, Vermilion Lake Association, Ely Field Naturalists, 1854 Treaty Authority, North St. Louis Soil and Water Conservation District, Lake County Soil and Water Conservation District, the Minnesota Statewide AIS Advisory Committee, and Ely Community Resource.
    2. Provided a Wildlife Enforcement internship to a student at VCC.
    3. Supported three projects through Ely Community Resource and their ECO Club:
      1. Rusty crayfish tracking and trapping on the Burntside River.
      2. AIS education material and boat cleaning demonstration during the ECO Club’s summer camp.
      3. Spiny waterflea sampling and measurement on Burntside Lake.
      4. Participation in the “Invaders Summit” in St. Cloud.
         
  5. Build early detection capabilities.
    1. Completed calcium testing on Burntside prior to our grant being awarded.  (Good news:  low calcium means unattractive habitat for zebra mussels!)
    2. Completed a lake survey by RMB Environmental Laboratories identifying plants present in Burntside.  No invasive plant species identified.
    3. 15 members of the BLA AIS Task Force and the EAIT competed the St. Louis River Alliance Sentry Program to help local residents begin to learn how to monitor the lake and identify any potential invasive species to facilitate early action.
       
  6. Spent only about 73% ($137,000) of the grant awarded and will be permitted to use the remaining funds in 2017.

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Burntside Lake Association
P.O. Box 81
Ely, MN 55731

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