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The eNews
Douglas Lake Improvement Association
PO Box 472, Pellston, MI 49769             July 14, 2020

Swimmer’s Itch:  Next Steps
     The Swimmer’s Itch Task Force, chaired by Kim and Ed Grant, submitted its Report describing the occurrence, severity and suspected parasitic sites resulting in swimmer’s itch on Douglas Lake this summer.  The report included background information, previous studies of the problem, options to address the problem, and the experience of other inland lakes with swimmer’s itch problems.  The first recommendation requested DLIA to fund an initial swimmer’s itch assessment of Douglas Lake.
     At the DLIA Executive Board meeting on July 9, 2020, the Board approved $1500 to fund a proposal from Swimmer’s Itch (SI) Solutions, LLC to conduct the needs assessment.  Field work on the project will to take place in July-August. The study will document the swimmer’s itch lifecycle present on the lake, including presence of the swimmer’s itch parasite and evidence that the Common Merganser is the host associated with the parasite’s lifecycle on the lake.  This will involve collection of snails around the lake and examination of the snails to determine if they carry the swimmer’s itch parasite.  Parasites found in the snails will provide an accurate species assessment of swimmer’s itch parasites in Douglas Lake.  A bird survey will also be conducted to determine how many merganser broods are present on Douglas Lake.
     SI Solutions’ report should be submitted in mid-September and the Board will be meeting with the Task Force Chairs to discuss the report, possible next steps, the financial requirements for these next steps and logistics of permitting requirements (from DNR) for relocation of mergansers if that is the appropriate next step. 
     For now, unfortunately, Douglas Lake residents, their families and guests have to continue to use all preventive measures to avoid swimmer’s itch and take advantage of those remedies that provide some relief from the nasty rash.
Garbage Alert!
      Bears and raccoons love a good rummage in our garbage bags.  Unfortunately they have no interest in cleaning up the stinky trashy mess after they forage.  People around the lake are reporting blue bag messes and the Silver Strand/Van Road bear has been seen attempting to lift the lid on a dumpster and failing in that project, turned to exploring blue bags left at the road side for trash pick-up. These hot summer days make bluebag rummage particularly unpleasant to clean up.  Please make sure your garbage is properly and securely left for pick-up.
Do NOT place blue bags out the night before garbage pick-up.  Overnight is prime shopping time for critters. A twist-tied garbage bag left at the road side is an invitation for a mess. If garbage must be put out the night before, it should be placed in a secure, lidded garbage can/container. Some folks suggest bungee cords over the top of lid and through handles help to keep lids secure.
If you are renting your cottage/home this summer, please remind your renters: Do NOT place blue bags at garbage pick-up points the night before you leave. Please give renters clear written instructions about garbage disposal and the reasons why just abandoning garbage bags is not acceptable.  It’s a courtesy to neighbors and reduces the health and safety risk of living with wildlife “trash pandas.”
Best practice: Garbage/blue bags should be secured in garbage cans with sturdy lids (locking containers or bungee cords across the top/handles) – bears, raccoons and other foraging wildlife are very skilled when feeding opportunities are offered.

[photo credit: Jerry Huey]
Road Construction on US 31 Starts
            The Michigan  Department of Transportation (MDOT) is beginning road work on US 31 between Conway and Petoskey extending from just south of Conway to the Division/US31 intersection at the golf course. Work began July 12 with an estimated end date of  August 21, 2020.
    Road restrictions are in place along the  5.8 mile stretch of road with lane closures and traffic regulators in sections with two lanes.  The work is scheduled to be done at night, between 8p.m. and 6 a.m. Sunday through Friday morning. There will be no work on Friday or Saturday night.
For project details and a map, visit Mi Drive.
Charter Spectrum High Speed Internet Initiative
   There is a movement afoot to bring Charter Spectrum’s attention to the number of people on Douglas Lake who would use their high-speed internet were it available. Based on advice we’ve received from the construction and development department of Charter Spectrum, Teri Phillips and I have been compiling a list of people who would consider using the service.  

If you’ve not given your name to either of us but would like to be included in this effort, please email Sally Butler at  Please include the following information:
Phone number
Simple physical description of your home (brown A-frame, etc.)
It has also been suggested we call individually to emphasize the need.  If you would like specifics on how to call, what extensions to use, etc., again email
Thanks for helping with this effort!!
Sally Butler
2020 Whale of a Sale
In this unusual year, the Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council is limiting its annual Whale of Sale to watercraft only (boats, kayaks, and canoes in good condition). No other type of water recreation equipment is available. The Boat Sale is on from July 13-17, rain or shine, at the Irish Boat Shop Storage Unit, 7589 S. State Street, Harbor Springs.

Your purchases help support the Watershed Council’s work to protect Northern Michigan’s waters.
You must register to view boats during the sale. To register, call 231-347-1181 or click below:
Link to form for appointment to look at watercraft for sale
Next Douglas Lake Merchandise Sale July 25th
            The first merchandise sale of the season on July 4th was a huge success.  Great weather! Great merchandise! Lots of opportunities to catch up with neighbors and friends you haven’t seen in days, weeks, possibly months or maybe since last year. Kelly and her team did a fine job. Kelly has reordered all the new merchandise that ran out, especially those terrific cooler bags and insulated cups.

As usual the sale is from 10 a.m.-noon at the Pellston Locker just off Douglas Lake Rd and US 31. Social distancing and masks, please.
Click Here for the Douglas Lake Buoy UMBIO data.
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The eNews is published twice a month on-season and
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