Carter Bailey, M.S. in Lake Management
SUNY at Oneonta

When embarking on the road of freshwater management, do you know what you’re jumping into, literally and figuratively? Water resources are important to us all, whether it be for human consumption, economic importance (navigation, agriculture, or industrial purposes), recreation, and/or conservation of biodiversity- water is important and requires sustainable stewardship. The concept of sustainable stewardship applies to anyone looking to protect the conservation value of their natural resources now and into the future. The vast majority of water bodies in the United States are the responsibility of private citizens or citizen groups. AQUA DOC has been working for over 35 years to provide our customers with sustainable and stewardship based management programs for their freshwater resources. Below are some important concepts to consider when jumping into management actions on your waters.

 

KNOWLEDGE
All water bodies are different from size and shape to natural vs man-made, flow rate, nutrition, plants and animals present, the list can go on and on. Knowledge and understanding of a given water body is the crucial first step in aquatic management.

 

PLANNING
Any good plan requires informed decision making where goals are determined along with a long-term strategy to get you there. These must be attainable goals based on the actual characteristics of your waters.

 

TOOLS & STRATEGIES
Know the management options that are available and the science behind them. What is the long-term outlook on a management technique? Is it a sustainable option that will lead you to your ultimate goals? These are important questions when you develop a long term strategy.

 

THE BATTLE FOR BALANCE
The challenge of even the most experienced professional is to maintain a balance. For every management action there is a reaction. Lakes and ponds are dynamic systems and change overtime. An experienced professional will account for this with an adaptive management strategy which will allow for changes and adjustment over the long-term.