Natural shorelands are critical for healthy lakes. Existing natural areas – wetlands and forests – create important habitat for wildlife, filter pollutants, and infiltrate surface water. In developed areas, constructing “living” shorelines of native plants and natural materials, reducing impervious surfaces, and managing our uplands to minimize overland runoff are all ways that we can work to restore natural shorelands and protect water quality.

Healthy Lakes Initiative

Person walking along lakeshore planted with beautiful native plant garden.
Constructed natural shoreline enrolled in the Michigan Shoreland Stewards Program. Credit: Mark Bugnaski via Midwest Glacial Lakes Partnership

Thanks to funding from Midwest Glacial Lakes Partnership (MGLP), HRWC is launching the Healthy Lakes Initiative by working with residents and neighbors on Bruin, Blind, South, Joslin, and Halfmoon Lake on the Halfmoon Chain of Lakes in Washtenaw County, and on Bass Lake in Livingston County. HRWC’s Healthy Lakes Initiative aims to support lake residents and neighbors to take an active role in promoting lake health by protecting and restoring natural shorelands, managing upland landscapes for water quality, and monitoring water quality to track changes in lake health over time.

Fill out the Healthy Lakes Contact Form to receive information about HRWC’s Healthy Lakes Initiative, including information about upcoming information sessions in your community!

Healthy Lakes Contact Form

Get Involved!

HRWC is looking for volunteers to participate in the Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program (CLMP)! CLMP is a statewide program that provides volunteers with materials and training to monitor various water quality parameters and track lake health overtime.

If you would like to learn more about CLMP or become a volunteer, fill out our Healthy Lakes Contact From and let us know in the comments that you’re interested in water quality monitoring.

Healthy Lakes Contact Form

Learn how to manage your lakefront property for a healthy lake! Register for a free account with the Michigan Shorelands Stewards Program (MiSS) and take the Shoreland Stewards Survey. Rating your shoreland will show you how even small improvements to your property can benefit your lake’s water quality – even if you have a seawall or modified shoreline! HRWC has created MiSS “Lake Association” pages for each of our project lakes. When you register at MiSS, choose your lake in the Lake Association drop-down box.

HRWC staff will support interested lakefront property owners in interpreting their survey results. Fill out our Health Lakes Contact Form and let us know in the comments that you want help with survey results.

Healthy Lakes Contact Form

HRWC will conduct ecological field assessments on natural shoreland properties (forests and wetlands) on or near our six project lakes, for free! HRWC’s Natural Areas Assessment Program offers field assessments for landowners interested in learning more about the plants, animals, and natural features on your property. Field assessments also offer a starting point for landowners interested in pursuing management or conservation options for their land.

If you are interested in a field assessment of the natural areas on your property, fill out our Healthy Lakes Contact Form and let us know that you’re interested in a field assessment.

Healthy Lakes Contact Form

Thank you for doing your part to protect inland lakes!