|Long Water Planning Area|
|Watershed area||2384 acres|
|Land Use||7.5% Impervious
|Impaired On the MPCA Impaired Waters List, Restoration necessary||N/A|
|Enhance Enhance condition to prevent future impairment. Nearly Impaired/degrading trend.||N/A|
|Protect Maintain good condition and protect against future risks.||Long|
|More information needed for assessment||Strunk|
Description & Overview
The Long WMA is 2,384 acres and includes Long and Strunk Lakes. Strunk Lake, a small 24-acre basin, drains to Long Lake via a series of wetlands, but little is known about the lake itself. Long Lake is the main lake in this WMA, with 407 acres and 6 miles of shoreline. Most of Long Lake’s water comes from groundwater sources, although there is some surface flow from its direct watershed and from wetlands near Strunk Lake. Long Lake eventually drains through a small outlet to St. Clair Lake.
Most of the land in the Long Lake WMA has been greatly altered. Gravel mining takes place in this WMA, and highways have impacted drainage patterns. Shoreline along Long Lake has also been greatly modified. The lake has had shoreline development for decades, but in the last 10 years, conversion of resort land to residential land has further increased shoreline development. There are some important areas of shoreline wetlands and emergent aquatic plants on Long Lake that need special protection from development, namely Long Lake’s three aquatic management areas located on the west and north sides of the lake. Recreational pressure on the lake is also very high. Boat traffic and noise have sometimes emerged as issues, especially with the advent of wake surfing boats.
The water quality in Long Lake is very good. There is some evidence that clarity has decreased in recent years, but other eutrophication indicators are either unchanged (e.g., chlorophyll-a) or improved (e.g., total phosphorus). Residents have complained of shoreline erosion and other water quality issues resulting from boat traffic, but a 1997 District study could not detect the impact of boating on turbidity or phosphorus levels. However, wakeboard boats have been introduced since that time. Phosphorus loading from septic systems is not an issue because most areas along and near Long Lake’s shores are served by sanitary sewer. Watershed nutrient loading is the largest threat to Long Lake’s water quality at present. The watershed is becoming more impervious, native shoreline vegetation is being removed, drainage is being altered, etc., all of which promote nutrient runoff.
Reduce nutrient loading to Long Lake
- Treat Stormwater discharges through implementation of District Rules
- Manage internal loading
- Identify and protect sensitive aquatic areas
- Conduct shoreline surveys
- Lakeshore protection through implementation of District Rules
- Explore impacts of gravel mining on Long Lake
Promote shoreline resilient to fluctuating water levels
Promote conversion of shoreline to naturalized shoreline
Ensure sustainable groundwater supply
Encourage installation of BMP’s that increase infiltration
- Climate change
- Transportation of AIS
- Habitat fragmentation and degradation
- Wildlife Habitat
- Fish communities
- prevent establishment of new invasive species, and manage existing invasive species.
- Protect and improve wildlife habitat in near shore areas
- Maintain healthy fish communities.
- Develop readiness response
- Monitor access points for new AIS
- Perform periodic aquatic vegetation surveys
- Encourage pollinator friendly seed mixes and plantings
- Identify and protect sensitive aquatic Areas