Earlier this month, ten intrepid paddlers joined the Nantucket Land Council and Linda Loring Nature Foundation staff to explore the North Head of Long Pond. We launched over a dozen colorful kayaks into “The Gut,” as the first bridge is known, and brought along some water quality sampling equipment to boot. It was a beautiful fall morning- a slight breeze, a large lunar tide, and just overcast enough to keep us from roasting under the September sun. The tour discussed water quality and the new “Team Turtle” initiative.
As we paddled counter-clockwise around the pond, we explained to paddlers how LLNF is managing invasive species such as phragmites and how the native Nantucket species are getting along as summer transitions to fall and eventually winter. Of course, a kayak tour with the Waterkeeper isn’t complete without a discussion of water quality, so we discussed with Dr. Sarah Bois Linda Loring’s new 2022 water quality monitoring program, and Seth Engelbourg and Libby Buck demonstrated how equipment such as the Secchi disk and handheld depth sounder is used for monitoring conditions in the Head of Long Pond.
We concluded our paddle with a discussion of the new snapping turtle signs which have been installed at the parking area at First Bridge. Turtling, as it is typically done in Long Pond, is detrimental to the snapping turtles. It alters their behavior, and they are frequently tangled in twine as they go for bits of raw chicken. Join “Team Turtle” and help us educate folks on how to enjoy these awesome reptiles without causing them harm! For more, please visit the Linda Loring Nature Foundation.
Although Long Pond was our last tour of the 2022 season, please stay tuned as more kayak tours are in the works for 2023. Happy paddling!