Letters to the Editor: Beaver Island's Egg Lake Bog: an Island, State and National Treasure
Dragon's Mouth Orchids, Sundews, Tamaracks, Pitcher Plants, Ospreys, Black Spruce, Loons
these are just a few of the rare jewels discovered by visitors to Egg Lake and its Bog on Beaver Island. Whether you've been there once or one hundred times, are an Islander, tourist, student or scientist, you know what a special place this is.
You don't have to visit Egg Lake Bog to understand the extraordinary significance of a pristine inland lake and bog located on a remote island in the Great Lakes. At the global level, the islands of the Great Lakes are recognized as significant for their bio-diversity. At the state and national level, groups have prioritized the preservation of island ecosystems in the Great Lakes. At the local level, the Beaver Island Natural Areas Program, along with Little Traverse Nature Conservancy and Central Michigan University Biological Station, designate Egg Lake Bog as their highest priority for preservation on Beaver Island.
A few days ago, several hikers made a discovery at the Lake. This winter, approximately two acres of the area surrounding the floating bog's access site, and 300 feet of shoreline, were logged, cleared, and graded. The extent of potential damage remains partially hidden under the snow, but it is clear that these activities on private land have impacted the important habitat along the shoreline of the lake and on the floating mat of the bog itself. Because the lake and bog are home to many fragile and rare species of plants and animals, even a private landowner must take special precautions to avoid damaging the habitat and potentially violating local and state laws designed to protect lake and wetland areas.
Spring Peepers, Wintergreen, Michigan Holly, White-Tail Deer, as well as twelve orchids including Pink Ladyslippers, Rose Pogonias, and Tall Whites
these are the subtle yet exceptional gems we are compelled to protect at the irreplaceable Egg Lake Bog.
Suzy Bonadeo, Marilyn Damstra,
JoAnne Hooker and Lois Williams.
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