Trash Clean-up – Lake Bottom, Shoreline and Beyond!

The Boon Family’s annual effort to remove trash from the bottom of Fourth Lake inspired this event and may inspire you as well! Read their story:

7 Principles of Leave No Trace

Wildlife Protection (see photo below)

Homeowner’s Guide to Lake-Friendly Living

Engage Local Libraries

Water Gardens in New York

Check out the New York Botanical Garden’s tips for starting your own water garden at

Find plants that are native to your area at the New York Flora Atlas:

Adirondack Watershed Institute (AWI) Lake Stewards Video Series; Certification and Training Programs

Ranger Station at Alger Island Access Point

Invasive Species - Aquatic (see photo below)

Invasive Species | Adirondack Watershed Institute (

Read about the new law (2021) requiring motorized boats to be inspected for invasive plants and other harmful organisms prior to launch in Adirondack waters.

Invasive Species - Terrestrial (see photo below)

Take photos and report infestations of invasive plants or animals to or to the iMapInvasives database:

Harmful Algal Blooms (see photo below)

Learn how to use a Secchi disc to measure lake water clarity. A Secchi disk is an 8-inch disk with alternating black and white quadrants. The disc is lowered into the lake until it can no longer be seen by the observer. This depth of disappearance, called the Secchi depth, is a measure of the transparency of the water.

Transparency can be affected by the color of the water, suspended sediments and algae. Transparency diminishes as color, suspended sediments, or algal abundance increases. Water is often stained yellow or brown by decaying plant matter. In some lakes, the brown stain can make the water the color of strong tea. Algae are small, green aquatic plants whose abundance is related to the amount of plant nutrients, such as phosphorus and nitrogen. Therefore, transparency can be affected by the amount of plant nutrients streaming into the lake from sources such as septic tanks, sewage treatment plants, and lawn and agricultural fertilizer. Suspended sediments are often due to resuspension from lake bottoms, construction sites, agricultural fields, and storm runoff.

Transparency is an indicator of the impact of human activity on the land surrounding the lake. If transparency is measured throughout the season and from year to year, trends in transparency can be observed. Diminishing transparency can signal an early warning sign that human activity is negatively impacting the health of a lake.

Thousands of birds are injured or killed each year due to fishing line entanglement. Heroic staff from the Adirondack Center for Loon Conservation detangle a bird caught in fishing line (left). The Department of Environmental Conservation warns that loons are at risk for lead poisoning due to ingestion of lead fishing weights (right).

Lead fishing weights removed from the stomach of loons.

Left photo: Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs), rapid accumulation of algae in lakes that can be harmful to both wildlife and humans. Common colors are green, blue-green, yellow, brown, or red.

Middle photo: Eurasian Milfoil, is an invasive aquatic plant that destroys ecosystems. Due to the dense mats that it forms, it often makes activities such as boating and swimming difficult or impossible. Furthermore, clusters of these plants serve as breeding grounds for mosquitoes.

Right photo: Spotted lantern flies are in invasive pest from Asia that feed on a variety of plants such as maple and walnut trees, and thus pose a significant threat to New York's agricultural health.

Sponsors, Supporters, and Endorsers of the Maintain the Chain Event

Fulton Chain of Lakes Association

Town of Webb

Town of Inlet

Adirondack Watershed Institute (of Paul Smith’s College)

Sixth and Seventh Lake Improvement Association