WLPP Water Quality Monitoring Program

The WLPP, in cooperation with the Lake Partners Program of the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change, will complete a significant water sampling program in 2017. 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. In collaboration with Watersheds Canada, we will also be using a multi-probe measuring device which will measure the following parameters with depth: Temperature, oxygen, oxygen saturation, pH, specific conductance and alkalinity. Additionally, Secchi depth and temperature measurements will be taken every two weeks. The locations of the sampling sites will cover most sections of the lake and include all of the sites shown on the map below.


This year's analytical work will build on the research done in 2014, 2015, and 2016 and will continue to determine of 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. To read the detailed reports on the 2015 and 2016 data, please visit our website at www.WLPP.ca. The reports can be accessed from the home page.


At least one new initiative will be added to our program this year involving a collaboration with Professor Vermaire from Carleton University. A graduate student under the direction of Professor Vermaire will complete a project likely on the sediments of the lake. We will also continue to monitor  any 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 at shallow water sites to monitor lake levels throughout the ice-free season. As part of our 'algae-watch' initiative, we will be looking for algal blooms and the presence of significant blue-green algae populations in the lake which could result in high concentrations of toxins in lake water, which is an important public health issue.




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