The LIA began the Greeter Program in 2009 with an Aquatic Nuisance Control Grant from the VT Department of Environmental Conservation, funding from the surrounding towns, and support from the LIA membership. In 2016, the LIA received a grant from the Lake Champlain Basin Program to add a hot water, pressure boat wash station to the program. This LIA program has been used as model for other state associations wishing to set up such a program. The program continues to be supported by grants from the VT DEC, the towns, and the LIA membership. The Greeter Program is an important element in our efforts to insure that no new invasives (besides Eurasian Watermilfoil) enter the lake and none are carried from our lake to other waterbodies.
Since 2010, the LIA has been working diligently to mitigate runoff into the lake and to replant eroding stream banks to reduce sediment flowing into the lake. From 2010 to 2012, LIA received grants from Vermont Clean & Clear and Vermont Better Backroads to design and implement catchment basins for several of the streams on the west shore of the lake that were identified as contributing large amounts sediment into the lake.
This work continued in 2013-2014 with the Pine Shore Rain Garden Project which was built to catch and absorb runoff from the stream running parallel to Pine Shore Dr.
In 2016 the LIA in collaboration with the Town of Hinesburg, and the Pine Shore Road Association received an Ecosystem Restoration Program (ERP) Grant to further remediate this stream below the Rain Garden by restoring its natural flood plan, replanting the stream banks with native species to prevent further erosion, and removing culverts and obstacles that had contributed to scouring and erosion. This project was successfully completed in 2018. See the project reports linked below.
From 2012 to 2015, LIA in collaboration with the Lake Iroquois Recreation District, received grant support to design and implement a beach erosion project which included development of a rain garden and stream bank remediation to prevent the runoff which had been causing considerable erosion of the beach sand into the lake. This erosion was causing considerable nutrient laden sediment to enter the lake.
Our mitigation work is continuing with another collaboration with the LIRD to design a project to remediate the Beebe Lane stream which is a high contributor of sediment and nutrients in the lake. The design part of the project was supported with funding form CHECK THIS and was completed in 2019. The LIA and LIRD are seeking funding for the implementation which is projected to take place in 2020-2022.
The success of these efforts shows in the reduction of nutrient loading in the lake. As of 2018, we have begun to see the results with significant decreases in Phosphorus levels in Lake Iroquois as reported in the state’s lake scorecard.
All of the mitigation and remediation work noted above depends on data to determine sources of nutrient and sediment problems. The LIA sampling and monitoring programs have been ongoing for many years. The data all collected by volunteers has been an important part of determining where work needs to be done and in tracking the success of the projects.
The LIA places channel markers at the public fishing access to insure that boats entering the lake do not move through the dense stands of milfoil at that end of the lake. In addition the LIA attempts to keep the channel clear of EWM my placing bottom barriers in this area. Because milfoil easily roots from fragments, it’s important to avoid breaking it up, as that enables it to spread. It also clogs propellers and rudders.