The hydroplane race boat speed trials were cut short this weekend due to too much chop on the water. “Too bumpy due to wind,” one race crew member said. But you can see from the picture of the race boat that Lincoln City photographer Steve Power took. The algae growing in the lake is now extreme and heavily laden with toxins according to the Devils Lake Water Improvement District. Neither humans nor pets of any kind should swim in the lake due to the health hazard.
As reported earlier here on NewsLincolnCounty.com, Devils Lake is going through another life cycle as grass carp, added to the lake in the early ’90s, have been eating the lake clean of much of its underwater vegetation – which, as it turned out, helped to produce a lot of algae. And of course the district says the algae grow like crazy due to the nutrient loading of the lake from normal vegetation decay, wildlife from defecating in tributaries to the lake and failed septic tanks from hundreds of homes around it.
As reported earlier here at NewsLincolnCounty.com, the water improvement district is trying to manage the lake’s life cycle which they say is about to trigger a major growth spurt in water vegetation. That’s because the old foraging grass carp are dying off. The district asked the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife last week to give them permission to add small numbers of new sterile grass carp as the vegetation starts coming back, all aimed at keeping a balance that will re-establish a healthy Devils Lake – preferably with blue water rather than a putrid looking green. Their plan also entails the gradual re-sewering of residences around the lake and restoring the lake to where it’s attractive again to Coho Salmon.
The ODFW Commission didn’t promise the district anything other than instructing ODFW staff to work closely with the district to explore all available options, which might involve grass carp. District Lake Manager Paul Robertson said there are other options out there but they’re prohibitively expensive.