Easy Ways You Can Help to Preserve and Protect the Natural Beauty of Bearcamp Pond
- Be considerate of loons while boating and fishing; keep a safe distance from them of 150 feet, as recommended by the Loon Preservation Committee. To protect them from injury and death, pick up any loose line when fishing and don’t use lead sinkers – per NH law.
- Follow NH Fish and Game laws:
- http://www.wildlife.state.nh.us/fishing/get-the- lead-out.html
- Check for and remove aquatic weeds from your boat, trailer, and anchor, especially if you boat in other waters – per NH law.
- http://www.wildlife.state.nh.us/fishing/documents/boat-self- inspection-brochure.pdf
- Properly maintain your septic system. Ensure that it is cleaned and inspected regularly.
- Be considerate of your neighbors and keep noise levels at a minimum. Read our section about Pond Acoustics.
- Phosphorous and sediment erosion into lakes are bad for the pond’s health and lead to algae blooms and cyanobacteria. You can take direct actions as listed below to prevent this
1. Do not bathe, shampoo or wash boats, pets or other objects in the pond with soap or phosphorous-containing detergents.
2. Use phosphate-free detergent in your laundry.
3. Don’t use fertilizer, except lime within 25′ of the high water mark. Plant a buffer zone, trees and bushes near the water to trap runoff, before it goes into the pond.
4. Don’t use your septic system to dispose of toxic chemicals such as paint, gasoline, waste oil, and harsh household cleaners. They destroy beneficial bacteria in the system causing major backups and problems. Use phosphate-free detergents.
Below are more and detailed Lake Protection Tips from Environmental Fact Sheet – NHDES Technical Bulletin WSPCD-BB- 1989-12
1. Pump your septic tank every three to five years, or whenever the sludge level exceeds one-third of the tank capacity. If you have an older septic system, annual pumping is recommended to reduce leakage.
2. Maintain your septic system properly. (Contact the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services to obtain several free informational brochures.) Be sure your system is designed to handle the load it receives. A leach field should increase in size whenever the frequency or volume of use increases.
3. Check your leach field for soft or wet areas or septic smells. Replace faulty systems.
4. Do not bathe, shampoo or wash boats, pets or other objects in the pond with soap or phosphorous-containing detergents.
5. Use phosphate-free detergent in your laundry.
6. Minimize land clearing activities. Re-vegetate bare areas to minimize erosion to the lake. Roads and paths to the pond should be curved to reduce erosion.
7. Maintain a buffer zone of natural vegetation along the shore to contain erosion and assimilate nutrients before they reach the pond.
8. Keep the shore natural. Man-made beaches do not stay and usually are illegal. You must obtain a permit from the State of New Hampshire Wetlands Board in order to put any amount of sand on the shoreline. The water currents and waves will wash away the sand. Algae blooms and increased weed growth will result and critical edge habitat belonging to freshwater clams, mussels and fish breeding will be jeopardized.
9. Do not fertilize within 25 feet of the pond shore. Only slow release nitrogen fertilizer is allowed within 250 feet to 25 feet of the pond shore.
10. Do not feed ducks or other aquatic animals. The feces of ducks, beavers and other aquatic animals causes increased nutrient levels, as well as e coli bacteria in the water.
11. Do not burn brush or leaves near the shore. The nitrates remain behind and are washed into the lake during the first rain. Do not dump leaves or grass clippings into the pond or near the shore. They also add nitrates to the water, which increases phosphorus levels.