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The eNews
Douglas Lake Improvement Association
PO Box 472, Pellston, MI 49755            October 31, 2015

Lead Poisoning takes a loon
On September 30, the Loon Ranger, Rich Gedert, received a phone call he never wanted.  On the line was Karen Spezia telling him that there was an injured loon along the beach. When Rich arrived, the loon could barely hold up its head against the waves coming onshore. The loon soon passed. Rich consulted with Jeff Lang of, and they contacted Dale Covy, veterinarian and Douglas Lake property owner, to do a necropsy. After Dr. Covy completed his work, he said the loon was muscular, all organs looked healthy, its weight seemed normal, there were no broken wings, and the legs looked fine. He said the loon regurgitated a minnow and a crawfish, and also in the gizzard, he found about 20 pebbles and a lead ball of similar size. The cause of death was lead poisoning.
We don't know if this adult loon was one of ours or if it was a transient; loons would have to be banded to be sure. According to the Michigan Loon Preservation Association, the birds commonly eat small pebbles to grind food for digestion. Small sinkers and jigs may be mistaken for pebbles. A bird that eats lead will become ill and die. Ingested lead enters the gizzard, where a combination of stomach acids and abrasion breaks down the metal. It then is absorbed into the bloodstream.

A bird with lead poisoning will exhibit physical and behavioral changes including loss of balance, gasping, tremors and an impaired ability to fly. It often dies within two or three weeks after eating the lead.

We don't know if the lead came from our lake, but this tells us if you haven't already done so, it is a good time to switch to lead free jigs and sinkers.  â€¢  Michigan Loon Preservation Association

Will the Dam Site Inn still be the Dam Site Inn?

You probably noticed work on Robinson Rd this year west of US 31.  The Conservation Resource Alliance (CRA) is leading a project to “free span” the Maple River. The CRA has completed four of the nine major projects of the initiative.  Culverts that were blocking fish passage and acting as dams, are being replaced with free-spanning structures. At the same time, the CRA is working on a project to remove the Lake Kathleen Dam, also known as the Maple River Dam, located by the Dam Site Inn. This project could happen in 2017.

The east branch of the Maple River is the outlet of Douglas Lake, and the dam is about two miles south. The Lake Kathleen Dam was built in 1966 and is no longer operating to produce electricity. The dam’s deteriorating condition poses danger to the public, properties, and is disruptive to the ecosystem.

Students at the University of Michigan Biological Station surveyed the Maple River to gather information about the habitat before the dam is removed.  The survey will be used to compare data after completion of the dam’s removal. Jayna Sames gave a presentation at our 2015 Annual Meeting, and Emma Tardiff wrote an article for our eNews.  Read on …

Sources:  Conservation Resource Alliance, Protecting and Preserving 16 watersheds in 15 counties of Northwest Lower Michigan, and
Kevin Cronk, Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council

DL Merchandise
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Shopping DL Merchandise is a bit different from last year.
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Merchandise Manager, Marilyn Kelemen,
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Douglas Lake Improvement Association    â”€   Dues are $25 a year 
Mail dues to DLIA, PO Box 472, Pellston, MI 49769

New Member/Update Member Form 
President -  Holly Gedert
Vice President - Frank Beaver
Secretary - Joan Hartwig
Treasurer - Susan Klaas

Membership updates to 

News Articles and Obituaries to
 The eNews is published twice a month on-season and
as needed (once a month) off-season.

The DLIA Newsletter is published twice a year - Fall and Spring.
Deadline for news and obituaries is 4/30/2016 for our Spring Newsletter.
We appreciate the obituaries being brief and relevant to Douglas Lake.

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