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Lakes come and go

Letter to the editor

Posted: Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Some observations concerning the Slate Lake controversy. How is it that in Southeast new lakes are emerging while old lakes are disappearing? Let me explain.

There is no better way to observe the phenomenon than by small aircraft. And, there is no better way to cover Southeast on a daily basis than being a charter floatplane pilot. It allows us a unique perspective for observing nature on a vast scale. In the past 37 years I have witnessed the emergence of dozens and dozens of new lakes because of global warming. Being an avid hunter and rock hound I have landed on many of these new lakes. While these new lakes are emerging from beneath the melting ice, many shallow lakes, similar to Slate Lake, are filling in with aquatic weeds, grasses, plants and sediment; many of which I can no longer land on safely.

About 35 years ago the U.S. Forest Service blasted dozens of pot holes on the Stikine River Delta to increase duck habitat. Mother Nature reclaimed them within 20 years. Southeast is a vast, ever-changing, dynamic landscape and Slate Lake is no exception. Given its small size and shallow depth, Mother Nature will probably reduce it to pond size within 60 years and a little muskeg meadow within 120 years.

Dave Werner

Haines



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