Water Quality Monitoring Program
2022
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The WLPOA Environment Volunteers, in cooperation with the Lake Partner Program of the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, will complete a significant water sampling program in 2022. Water samples will be taken and physical measurements made at nine locations. Total phosphorous, calcium, and chloride will be measured once a month and every month during the spring, summer and fall. Secchi depth and temperature readings will also be taken. These data will provide more evidence of some of the trends observed and reported in our previous Water Quality Monitoring Program Reports.

This year's work will build on the research done since 2014, and will continue to determine the year to year trends in phosphorous concentrations throughout the lake. We will also gain important information on the relative sources of phosphorous including contributions from sediments. Of particular interest is the monitoring of White Lake for changes in chemistry and water clarity resulting from the presence of zebra mussels. The significant effects of zebra mussels were first noted in 2016 and it is expected that changes will continue to occur for the next several years. 

We plan to continue our studies on changes in the amount (volume) of aquatic plants in the lake and to track changes which could be related to human activity, climate change and the presence of zebra mussels. 
Also, we will be taking accurate depth measurements to monitor lake levels throughout the ice-free season.
 
An important part of our work is to monitor the occurrence and duration of algal blooms in White Lake. Of particular interest are the annual blue-green algal blooms which could produce dangerous toxins. Algal blooms of this type are reported to the Ontario Ministry of the Environment Conservation and Parks for water sampling and analysis. Local Health Units in both Lanark and Renfrew Counties are also contacted so that each of the four municipalities on White Lake are apprised of any human health risks.
 
We are also continuing to observe and measure changes in zebra mussel populations as well as relative populations of phytoplankton in lake waters during the ice-free season.
 
Loon and cormorant counts throughout the ice-free season will be made so that we can track population levels over time.