Merganser trapping completed for 2019
CLWA's merganser trapping team completed the removal of all broods from Crystal Lake by the end of July. The final count was 10 broods (one without the hen) and a total of 68 ducklings, 77 birds in all. This compares to 16 broods and a total of 143 birds captured in 2018. The team carried out a full lake survey on August 14, and confirmed that no more mergansers were present.
The mergansers were relocated to several different Michigan Department of Natural Resources approved sites in northern Michigan, where the environment had been judged suitable for this species and where the snail host for producing swimmer's itch was not present.
Much of the success of this program is thanks to the active responses of the Crystal Lake community, who reported merganser brood sightings that began in mid-June. The CLWA is grateful for your participation and asks for your continuing support, so that the progress being made against swimmer's itch can be maintained into the future.
Look for additional reports on swimmer's itch incidence and snail infection rates in the near future, after final analyses are completed.