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Big Muskego Lake Getting Back to Normal

Lake levels are up thanks to recent rains, and colder weather has helped navigation, while officials also see a silver lining in summer fish kill.

The concerns over navigation on Big Muskego Lake seem to be ebbing away as the lake levels have risen.

Tom Zagar, conservation coordinator with the city, told the Common Council Tuesday that the lake has risen eight inches with the recent rainfalls, which is good news for boaters.

"We finally have high water on the lake, and boats are able to navigate much more easily than they have all summer," Zagar said. However, he explained that the level is still about four inches below the sill of the dam.

In addition, the cooler weather has had an impact on milfoil on the lake. The invasive aquatic weed had nearly choked off all boat traffic just a month ago on the lake, leaving residents to ask if chemical treatments had been enough. Now, Zagar said the change in temperatures have had the expected effect, knocking back the weed to make the lake more navigable.

Things are looking brighter for aquatic wildlife as well.

Despite the trouble that the hot, dry summer had caused for fish - - deputy lake commissioner Greg Burmeister said there was an upside.

"Blue gills have exploded along the shorelines, and I don't think I've ever seen such populations, so that bodes well for future fishing. It's likely that the reduction of the pike, which are predatory, has really had an impact on the positive side for these fish," he said.

Sheepshead October 27, 2012 at 04:45 PM
Bluegills died during the fish kill too. I'm skeptical that their numbers "exploded"

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