Welcome to Thorndike Pond!

lake
photo by Jim Banghart

For over 50 years the Thorndike Pond Conservation Association has worked to protect the water and shoreline of our beautiful 265-acre pond, pictured above. Thorndike Pond lies just east of Mount Monadnock in New Hampshire, spanning the Towns of Jaffrey and Dublin. Members of the TPCA include shoreline residents and friends of Thorndike Pond.

The TPCA has participated in the NH Department of Environmental Services Voluntary Lake Assessment Program  since it's inception. Water tests at various points on the Pond are taken monthly from May through October, and continue to demonstrate that the waters of Thorndike Pond are among the best in New Hampshire.

Through the NH DES Weed Watcher Program, a trained volunteer patrols the perimeter of the Pond throughout the summer months and alerts residents to the incursion of invasive aquatic plants which can affect water quality.  The TPCA participates as well in the NH Lakes Association Lake Host program which provides complimentary inspections of boats at the public boat ramp on Dublin Road, and education to the dangers of infestation of exotic aquatic species like Milfoil.

In partnership with The Monadnock Conservancy, the TPCA monitors human and natural activity at Whittemore Island, located in the narrows of the Pond. Visitors are asked to sign in at the boat landing on the south end of the island, and to report any unusual findings in the log book.

Members of the Thorndike Pond Conservation Association meet annually in August. The Board of Directors meets throughout the year and maintains communication with members using e-mail, USPS and this website. Please inquire about Membership by contacting us at the above link .

Annual Meeting - 2020

Thorndike Pond Conservation Association, Inc

Box 595, Jaffrey, NH 03452

 

Minutes of the 2020 Annual Meeting

August 1, 2020, held online via Zoom

 

The meeting was called to order by President Jim Potter at 10:07.  There were 33 properties represented at the meeting with a total of 50 members in attendance.  Those in attendance are listed at the end of these minutes.

The meeting started by each property owner introducing themselves.

Under Updates, Jim reported:

  • There was one member who passed during the year: Robert Banker
  • New owners on the pond:
    • Stephanie Plent and “Pepper” Denman bought the former Jackson property
    • Jonathan Birge and Michele Hacker bought the former Steinberg property
  • Properties for sale:
    • Hammerman, now with an offer accepted
    • McGowan, just notified yesterday, at 533 Thorndike Pond Road, and not yet formally on the market

For old business:

  • The membership approved the minutes of last year’s annual meeting
  • The membership approved all actions taken by the board in the last year.

Jim Banghart gave the treasurer’s report, a copy of which is attached.  The balance at the end of the fiscal year ending on June 30th was $82,885.51.  It was pointed out that the TPCA has historically needed to do repairs to the dam every 10 years and it has been 10 years since the last repair. The cost of the repair last time was $110,000 and the cost typically doubles at each repair.  Eddie Ginsburg pointed out the importance of everyone paying their annual dues.

Jim Banghart then gave the water report. The testing done by the TPCA is part of the state’s Department of Environmental Services, Volunteer Lake Assessment Program (VLAP).  We do sampling typically in June, July and August, one with the state’s participation with additional equipment.  Readings from last year show no significant change from prior years.  This year there will be sampling only in June and August because the state is not doing any testing due to the corona virus.  In addition to the sampling done by the TPCA, the town samples the town beach monthly.  Their July 22nd testing showed a high E-coli count at one of the two sampling locations and a big difference between the counts on opposite ends of the beach.  They redid the tests a week later and the counts were all low.  Jim Potter pointed out that they have done DNA analysis on some problem locations and about 80% of those tests indicate the E-coli comes from birds.  Their droppings into the pond sink to the bottom and when they get stirred up by swimmers it can cause high readings.  It was pointed out that E-coli testing is also a requirement for the camps, and it was suggested we should include that data in our reporting.  When questioned, Jim Banghart said that E-coli testing was not part of the VLAP testing.  He was asked to check with the state to determine why and see if it should be included.

Jim Potter then gave the Weed Watching report, a copy of which is attached at the end of these minutes.  This program is intended primarily to find invasive species as soon as possible.  Jim voiced appreciation for those members who participate in the testing.  He suggested that all members should regularly watch the waterfront near their homes and report anything suspicious.  The presence of Bladderwort, though lower than in recent years, was questioned.  It was suggested that this is best handled by raking it up and that it makes good compost.

Andrew Krivak gave the Lake Host report.  He described the program and credited NH Lakes for its operation.  Because of problems last year he has hired 4 paid Lake Hosts this year at a cost of about $11 per hour: Kalli Taylor, Sigmund Winiecki, Andrew Cornelius, and Nahomy Blanco.  Between them they have done a good job in covering critical times.  Paul Santos was recognized for the work he does on preparing the annual grant and reporting results.  He encouraged more volunteer time as we are credited with that time towards matching contributions.  We are expected to match dollar for dollar.  This year we are running at about 190%, well above the expected level, but below our normal 700-800%.  A plea was made by many for increased volunteering by TPCA members. It was also noted that the program is more of an educational program and that we can’t turn people with boats away or require them to clean the boats.

Anne Banghart gave the geese report.  We ended up with 2 families this season.  One nested on the island and had 6-eggs.  Four of the eggs hatched, but only one of the goslings has survived, most likely because of the Bald Eagle on the pond.  The second family, which we have no reported nesting site, has 4-goslings.  So, she summarized the situation for this year as the bad news is we have 2-families, the good news is that we only have 5 goslings. Rick Bracket from the Monadnock Conservancy, which owns the island, put up fencing around the island the geese use, but took it down after seeing loons, and it was then used by the geese for their nesting.  Amy Radin suggested a spray called “Goose Fence” which smells for a short while after application, but which keeps geese away for up to 30 days.  It is available online; she has not found it at any store.  Anne concluded by suggesting that property owners continue to use fencing and reported that hunting of geese is permitted, starting in September.

John Brouder, representing the nominating committee offered the following nominations for the next year:

  • President: Steve Magoun
  • Vice President: Lisa Frantzis
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Jim Banghart
  • Member at large for two-year terms: David Nash and Jim Potter.

With no nominations coming from the floor, those nominations were accepted unanimously.

For other business:

  • Pat Scholl asked about this year’s drawdown.  Jim Banghart reported that the drawdown policy is shown on the website and that this year will be 1-board.  Next year will be the 3-board drawdown in the 3-1-1 sequence.
  • Jim Banghart passed along a request by Emily Carr who could not get on the meeting, that members drive slowly on the road and ask the same from people they employ.
  • Amy Radin pointed out the free book exchange at the end of her driveway and encouraged members to take advantage of it.
  • Ken Roman recommended that the board see if some other alternative than red cones be used to restrict parking restrictions near the entrance to the Gilson Pond entrance to the State Park.
  • Lisa Frantzis questioned water temperatures and the effect of global warming.  Jim Banghart said that he measures water temperatures on his lake front regularly, but it is not officially reported anywhere.  The current temperature is around 80 degrees.  He described a conference he had attended on the effects of global warning on lakes.  The speaker reported that the effects are not so much on the temperature, which has risen just a little, but on the extremes of weather that result in: more hurricanes, more severe rain events, more heat and dry spells, later ice in-dates and earlier ice out dates.  Heavier rain events have been observed this year and Jim Potter pointed out the need to control the resulting runoff into the lake.  Higher temperatures can also cause blooms of cyano-bacteria.
  • Jim Potter mentioned the good work being done by the private organization, NH Lakes and encouraged members to visit their website for such things as Lake Host training, water runoff control, and preferred landscaping approaches.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 11:43.

 

 

Properties Represented for the 2020 Annual Meeting

 

Ayres : Demi

Bailey/Rosten: Phil and Sue

Banghart: Jim and Anne

Birge/Hacker: Jonathan and Michele

Brouder/Greenwald: John and Carol

Brown: Charity

Cooper: Wayne and Lisa

Davidson/Webster: Wendy

Dahl/Frantzis: Ophelia and Lisa

Epstein: Steve and Bea

Ginsburg: Edddie

Grant: Janet

Hunt: Susan

Jacobs/Durkee: Sarah

Krivak/Dunlop: Andrew

Krouk, Jeff

MacKenzie: Kathleen

Mansfield: Richard and Fred

Melzer: Bob

Moore/Khalsa: Tom and Hari Kirin

Monadnock Christian Ministries: Roy

Nash: David and Alisa

Penny: Phil and Lisa

Plent/Denman: Stephanie and “Pepper”

Potter: Jim

Radin: Bob and Amy

Roman: Ken

Santos/Stuart: Paul and Anne

Schnoor: Roberta

Scholl: Pat

Silbert: Earl and Pat

Strickland: Elise and Don

Whittelmore/Cassel: Jeff and Robin

 

 

 

Treasurer’s Report

 

Operational Checking Account

         

Starting Balance

   

 $   3,451.03

Deposits

 

 $ 14,775.00

 
 

Dues

 $   7,000.00

   
 

Donations

 $   7,775.00

   

Withdrawls

 

 $ 16,770.24

 
 

Dam Registration

 $      400.00

   
 

NH Lakes Dues

 $      300.00

   
 

Water Testing

 $      300.00

   
 

Dam Maintenance

 $         80.00

   
 

Postage/stationary

 $               -  

   
 

Repro

 $               -  

   
 

Bank Charges

 $         26.25

   
 

Website

 $      113.95

   
 

Lake Host Expenses

 $      399.04

   
 

Filing Fees

 $         75.00

   
 

PO Box

 $         76.00

   
 

Transfer to Money Market

 $ 15,000.00

   

Ending Balance

   

 $   1,455.79

         

Account Balances

         

Account

Action Amount

Starting Balance

Ending Balance

Checking

 

 $   3,451.03

 $   1,455.79

         

Infinity

     
 

Start

 

 $      170.00

 
 

Bank Credit

 $         30.00

   
 

Ending

   

 $      200.00

         

Money Market

     
 

Start

 

 $ 65,831.94

 
 

Transfer from Checking

 $ 15,000.00

   
 

Interest

 $      311.08

   
 

Ending

   

 $ 81,143.02

         

Totals

 

 $ 69,452.97

 $ 82,798.81

2020 Water Report

 

We work with the State’s Department of Environmental Services on their Volunteer Lake Assessment Program (VLAP). We normally sample 3-times a year, once each in the months of June, July, and August, one of which is with the state’s participation  This year, because of the virus, the state is not doing any sampling, but they are, with many precautions, analyzing the samples we supply.  We will only be testing twice this year.

 

Anyone would like to observe the process can observe on August 12th.  We are open to anyone who wants to take over the water testing.  It is a good way to get involved with a minimal commitment of just 3 mornings a year, two of them for just an hour.

 

The state’s assessment is that our lake is in the top of their categories.  Our data varies some from year, but they report there is no significant trend other than a decrease in pH level last year.  This means our lake is slightly acidic.  This is common to lakes in NH and is normally attributed to acid rain or beaver activity.  In our case, the worst pH readings are at the SW inlet and the best readings are at the outlet, indicating that the acidity improves in our lake.

 

NH Lakes has forecasted that Cyanobacteria can be a problem this year.  This is a single-celled bacterium that can produce toxins that adversely affect livestock, domestic animals, and humans. Cyanobacteria blooms may look like pea soup or antifreeze, or like someone dumped greenish-blue paint into the water. Blooms could also smell like grass.  With increased activity on our lakes, combined with a warm winter, NH LAKES is expecting to see even more reports of cyanobacteria blooms this summer than in previous years.  As of July 31st, there have been 7 cases of Cyanobacteria warnings posted by the state.

 

Testing at the town beach is not part of the water testing we do on the pond.  That testing is done by the town’s Recreation Department and results can be found on the town website.  Readings taken on July 21st showed a high level of E-coli on one side of the town beach and acceptable levels on the other.  The beach was closed until a retest taken a week later showed  a low E-coli count.

 

 

Thorndike Pond Conservation Association

Weed Watcher Report 2020

 

 

The weed watching program is set up to work in conjunction with the lake host program.  The lake hosts do an excellent job of keeping exotic invasive plants and animals out of Thorndike Pond.  The weed watchers survey the entire shoreline of the pond on a regular basis in an effort to quickly identify any invasive species that might appear.  The members of the weed watcher team are Anne & Jim Banghart, Lisa Franzis, David and Alisa Nash, Patty Scholl, Roberta Schnoor, and Jim Potter.  Each member of the team has an assigned area of the shoreline to monitor and is expected to patrol that area at least once a month.  I want to thank them for their efforts and encourage every member of TPCA to learn about native plants and assist in monitoring for invasive species in the vicinity of their property.

 

Fortunately our team has not identified any evidence of invasive aquatic species in Thorndike Pond.   Bladderwort has been in smaller amounts this summer than in some recent years.   Other native plants including Pickerel Weed, Bur-reed, Watershield, Yellow and White Water Lillies, Cattails and small amounts of native milfoil are present in similar quantities around the shoreline.    The greatest amount of plant growth continues to be in the vicinity of the boat launching ramp and the camps at the north end.  There is some filamentous green algae growth around the south inlet.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Jim Potter