Rules of the Lake

Every big shared space has to have some rules, even if it’s just agreed-upon etiquette. Here are some of our Lake’s rules:

Urgent: Stop zebra mussels from ravaging Lake Buel!

Lake Buel is not yet suffering from the infestation of zebra mussels that have proved such a nuisance in other local lakes; but, our lake provides the perfect growth environment for zebra mussels given its high calcium levels, pH and water temperature.

Here’s why we all should care [source]:

Zebra mussels cause damage to aquatic ecosystems in a a number of different ways. Zebra mussels consume algae which is also the food source of larval fish as well as other native organisms. A large zebra mussels infestation could therefore cause a decrease in the population of other animals including fish, birds and other fresh water mollusks. Additionally, Zebra mussels can attach themselves to crayfish, turtles, and fresh water clams in such a way that impedes their ability to perform basic functions in the wild such as eating or fleeing from predators. Zebra mussels are filter feeders, and as such can cause an increase in water clarity. This can lead to an increase in the population of aquatic vegetation.

(There’s even more at Wikipedia.)

What you can do

ALL floating devices MUST be washed before entering the lake including boats, kayaks, canoes, paddles used, water skis, tubes, etc. Zebra mussels can attach themselves to just about anything stuck into the water.

Also review the Massachusett DCR brochure for current information on stopping the spread.

Boating Rules

Adherence to Massachusetts Boating regulations and safety recommendations is expected.  If you are uncertain about current guidelines, the following links are recommended.

Keeping the Lake safe and peaceful

Please watch out for swimmers who may be out towards the middle of the Lake. And swimmers, please be aware that if you’re swimming by yourself, you may well be nearly invisible to boaters.

Please be respectful of people’s desire for quiet, especially early in the morning and at night. Motorboats can be an alarm clock that no one set :)

Please keep the Lake clean even beyond the legal obligations to do so.

Please treat with respect the wildlife that shares our Lake. The total amount of Lake wetlands has diminished over the years, so it has become even more important to try to leave those areas undisturbed. The turtles and herons will thank you! (Well, actually they won’t. Turtles and birds lack the cognitive capabilities required to thank someone.)

New Fishing Regulation  [source]

The Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (DFW) reminds all freshwater anglers that as of January 1, 2012, the use of any lead fishing sinkers and lead jigs weighing less than 1 ounce is now prohibited in all inland waters (freshwater) of the Commonwealth. In terms of this regulation, “lead sinker” or “lead weight” is defined as any sinker or weight made from lead that weighs less than 1 ounce. A “lead jig” is defined as any lead-weighted hook weighing less than 1 ounce.  For more information, click here.

4 thoughts on “Rules of the Lake

  1. I am writing in regards to the Bald Eagles and their offspring. There are 2 babies who fledged on July 1st and 2nd. (Fledging happens 10 to 12 weeks old). They were gone for 2 days learning to fly by watching their parents. The parents encouraged them back to the nest on July 4th. One parent had just roosted near the nest when the fireworks started and scared her off. How rude and disrespectful! These bird are not on the endangered species list however, they ARE still federally protected! It is against the law to disturb these birds. Less than 50% survive their first year. At this time they are still learning to fly and perch. Soon they will learn from their parents to hunt. Please have some respect for these 1st time parents and their fledglings….HUMANS are their top predator, 2nd is the Great Horned Owl, 3rd is Raccoon. Look it up for yourself, laws and behavior.
    Lake Buel has been very blessed to have these birds choose here to live. The association and home owners might want to reconsider fireworks on Labor Day weekend. To home owners, Fireworks are ILLEGAL in Massachusettes. It is VERY disturbing to these birds. Birds don’t fly at night but on the 4th the parent did because it got spooked. What if someone hit it with a firework?? That parent’s freedom and independence would have been…dead. Please have some respect and consideration to help them thrive. The babies won’t be here long…..

  2. Agreed.

    I would additionally cite harassing herons and ducks with jet-skis, and throwing rocks at ducks, as obviously inappropriate (choosing my words to stay as civil as possible). These are both things I’ve seen while out on the lake.

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