Truesdale Lake  

South Salem, New York

June 5, 2019
by rob

Geese, Goslings, Eggs, and Oil

A number of residents have been actively oiling goose eggs on the islands of Lake Truesdale since 2008 to control the population of Resident Canada Geese on the lake. But the existing crew of people trained to oil eggs it has shrunk over the years — and we need more people to step up.

If you are interested in helping out, please contact us via email at or via our Contact Form. The process is not too difficult and training is easy. The oiling season for 2019 is over, so it would be training for the 2020 spring season.

What is egg oiling?

Egg oiling is a long-term strategy that reduces the number of resident Canada Geese on Truesdale and other lakes through physical intervention and behavior changes.

The physical intervention is the actual oiling of the eggs after mating has occurred but before the eggs have developed embryos. In our lake this typically takes place in late March or early April and can be pinpointed by observing the mating ritual of the local geese couples and finding their island nests about a week later.

Oiling works best with a crew of three working together. One person finds the nests, one person keeps the geese away from the nest, and one person oils the eggs. Oiled eggs are marked with sharpies to keep track of which ones have been treated. Records are kept for nests and eggs in each nest as a requirement of permission from the NYS DEC.

The behavior change for the geese is the most important long term consequence of oiling the eggs. We oil the eggs rather than simply break them because if the eggs are broken the goose simply lays more eggs. However, if the eggs are oiled, the development of the egg is stopped by preventing oxygen flow into the egg. This prevents the development of the embryo. Since the geese do not know this, they sit on the eggs for the 5-6 weeks it takes for hatching. When the oiled eggs do not hatch, the geese view it as a “failed nesting.”

Resident Geese bad, Migratory Geese good

In a successful nesting, the adults shed their flight feathers and take up residence with their new goslings on the lake, which is not what we want. In addition, other members of the flock who may have had failed nestings stick around to support the new parents in the flock.

In a failed nesting, they keep their flight feathers, take off, and head further south for the summer. They do not have the time to lay more eggs and have the goslings fledge and fly before the end of the season. This is what we want. These geese also do not develop a preference for returning to Lake Truesdale next summer and resume being Migratory Canada Geese rather than Resident Canada Geese.

Keeping the geese migratory means the problem is reduced both in the current year and in subsequent years. But other geese will take up residence on Truesdale if we stop oiling the eggs, so we must keep up the program to head off more future residents. We will also always have transient migratory geese — you can tell these geese since they are willing and able to fly away and visit other lakes since they do not have goslings to protect.

Oiling Results

In the last several spring hatching seasons, the crew of egg oilers has oiled over 100 eggs between the three islands each year. This has prevented the hatching of those eggs and has broken the resident behavior of those goose parents. To be successful, there has to be an initial oiling treatment and a follow up oiling treatment. Timing is the key to successful outcomes.

Egg oiling has made a huge difference in controlling the resident goose population on Lake Truesdale. When we first moved here in 1999, we would arrive home to 60-80 geese/goslings on our lawn. And easily double or triple that number on the lake. Lawns were covered in goose droppings. The beaches were favorite spots for goose gatherings. I have photos (deep in the archive) that I can dig up in case you think I am egg-agerating.

We have gotten it much more under control relative to those days — but we can always do better. Will you step up to help?

May 14, 2019
by rob
Comments Off on First Lake Treatment Set for Friday, May 17, 2019

First Lake Treatment Set for Friday, May 17, 2019

Fanboat surveying the plants of the lake. (Photo by Rob Cummings)

Truesdale Lake will be treated with the herbicide Clipper on Friday, May 17.

Our lake manager from Pond & Lake Connection will spray Clipper from their boat along the shoreline and in densely weeded areas.

Remember to turn off any irrigation coming from the lake for at least 24hrs.

A full description of Clipper is available at the following link –

May 7, 2019
by rob
Comments Off on Regional Lake Association Meeting Set for June 14 in Carmel

Regional Lake Association Meeting Set for June 14 in Carmel

Back by popular demand!  This year’s regional New York State Federation of Lake Association (NYSFOLA) Lower Hudson Lakes meeting will be on Friday, June 14, at the Sedgewood Club on the shores of China Pond in Carmel.  Thanks to Dora and Scott Keller, who arranged for us to use this venue. The meeting will start at 9:30 am and conclude around 2 pm. A light lunch will be provided.  The cost to attend is $5 per person.  

To sign up, please fill out the form at this link:  

From the organizers:

We have a great line up of speakers.  Maureen Galway-Perotti, a Master Gardener from the Putnam County Cornell Cooperative, will speak about shoreline buffers.  Steve Di Lonardo of Aquatic Ecosystems Consulting will share his insights on nuisance algae.  Kevin Fitzpatrick, the Director of Engineering from the East of Hudson Watershed Corporation, will talk about stormwater management and how that can protect your lake. One speaker from the past, Ken Belfer, will revisit to give a brief overview of the DEC pilot project at Mohegan Lake.  And we will be treated to a display of aquatic plants and a talk on aquatic plant control by AJ Reyes of Northeast Aquatic Research.  You will also have time for networking with other lake enthusiasts.

NYSFOLA regional announcement

If you are planning to attend, please let them know by May 31.  Your reservation helps them ensure enough seating and food.  Reserve your spot using this link: 

April 13, 2019
by rob
Comments Off on June 13, 2019 – Lakewide meeting – Drawdown Initial Results & 2019 Plan

June 13, 2019 – Lakewide meeting – Drawdown Initial Results & 2019 Plan

On Thursday, June 13 starting at 8:15pm at the South Salem Presbyterian Church, we will be holding a meeting open to all lake association and lakefront owners about the drawdown of Lake Truesdale.

The Pond and Lake Connection (the company that has managed Truesdale Lake weed and algae control for the past two years) attempted to draw down Truesdale Lake in the Fall of 2018 but they ran into technical, material, and weather difficulties that ultimately doomed the project for this past winter.

The unusually wet summer and fall of 2018 pushed the initial siphon pipe installation back several weeks from the original plan of mid-October. Once the siphon pipes were in, we received several very significant rainfalls that ended up filling the lake up faster than the pipes were able to drain it. The storms also disconnected the siphon pipes and interrupted the drawdown on several occasions.

2018 was a learning experience for us and Pond & Lake Connection and we will be doing an analysis of what went wrong and how to correct and account for it.

Some of the factors that need to be taken into account to correctly model the inflow to Truesdale Lake include:

That’s the easy stuff.

When the lake is at a higher level over the spillway, it drains faster. Every inch it goes higher increases the rate of outflow. The reverse is true as well.

Once the water level goes below the spillway height, the lake ceases to drain. The aim of the drawdown is to get the lake to a point 2-3 feet lower than the spillway height. How is this accomplished? Siphon pipes are what we are using.

To model the outflow in this situation, we need to know:

  • diameter of the pipe (6″ used in 2018, recommend 12″ pipe for 2019)
  • number of pipes used (4 used in 2018, 6-8 recommended in 2019)
  • speed of water flow
  • length of pipe
    • 12″ pipe is significantly more expensive than 6″ pipe
    • length of pipe impacts ability to siphon effectively
    • need more siphons and longer lengths of pipe

There are a number of other factors that impact flow rate that we will discuss. Using these, we can calculate estimated volume of flow over the spillway through the pipes. To be effective at lowering the lake level, this volume must be higher than the inflow rates. Complicating the real world results, the inflow rates can and do change on a daily basis due to rainfall and runoff.

Assuming we can get a volume of water out of the lake significantly exceeding the actual inflow into the lake, we will be able to achieve a drawdown. Once this has been achieved the questions that remain are:

  • how many days do we drain for to get to desired drawdown height
  • how long do the siphons stay in place for optimal drawdown impact
    • soil compaction,
    • freezing weed roots and seeds,
    • time to work on exposed waterfront {permits may be required!},
    • …etc
  • how long will the lake take to re-fill up to spillway height for spring

The meeting in June will be a chance for Pond & Lake Connection — along with the volunteers who are helping with the project — a chance to speak and answer questions about these calculations and plans for the upcoming season.

Hope you can come!

November 24, 2018
by rob
Comments Off on October 19 Lake Drawdown Article in Record Review Newspaper

October 19 Lake Drawdown Article in Record Review Newspaper

I write a bi-weekly column in the Record-Review ( called “Talk of The Town” about current events in Lewisboro. Occasionally I will also write an article and submit photos about various topics and events in town.

A few weeks ago (Oct 19 edition) I wrote about the Truesdale Lake drawdown.

I encourage anyone who is interested in local news to subscribe to this paper which publishes every Friday and is only available in print form. The more Lewisboro subscribers the more they cover in town. The Record Review is the Newspaper of Record” for the Town of Lewisboro. This means they publish all of the town’s meeting and legal notices as required by NY State law. And they cover Town Board meetings, Planning Board Meetings, Zoning Board meetings, and School Board meetings.

I have attached the drawdown article – and the top half of my Talk of The Town article – to this post (see below). A bunch has happened since then with the drawdown – check the Nextdoor Truesdale site for updates and comments.


October 15, 2018
by rob
Comments Off on Your Lake and You – Newsletter

Your Lake and You – Newsletter

From “Your Lake & You!” — the NALMS (North American Lake Management Society) newsletter (excerpt):

The purpose of this newsletter is to help you better understand the fascinating things that you may not know about your lake and to guide you on how you can use your power as an individual to make a positive impact. The lake that you know and love may look like it is just a body of water that is fun to explore and enjoy, but it is actually a complex system made up of many different parts, both living and non-living. It is important for your lake to have responsible citizens like you to look out for it.

Being a lake’s caretaker may seem overwhelming and complicated; however, with some work and dedication, the rewards of your efforts will be fulfilling. Without your help, your lake could quickly change into a different type of environment that may not be as fun for you and your family to enjoy in the years to come. These changes would not only affect you, but they would also affect the fish, birds, turtles, frogs, flowers, dragonflies, and other animals that are a part of your lake’s ecosystem. But, with the right attitude, anybody can be a lake protection champion. Are you up for the challenge?…”

read more in the original document via this link


October 8, 2018
by rob
Comments Off on Some TLPOA and Lake History

Some TLPOA and Lake History

Truesdale Lake property Owners Association Inc.

A Look At The Past

(Thanks to Karen Jahn for providing the original scans – see below)

July, 1931 Truesdale Lake Club was created. Previously known as the Truesdale Lake Colony, the club was the action spot. Having dinner at the clubhouse was super, especially when you were seated on the sun porch overlooking the boating and swimming that took place every weekend.

The clubhouse was Opened at 9 a.m. and closed at 1 a.m. Regular meals were served by reservation only, but light refreshments could be obtained at anytime. Regular meals were served on the sun porch only, during the summer season. The House Committee selected the menus and fixed prices for meals & refreshments.

The ‘Clubhouse was also used for dances, entertainment, and special events arranged by the Entertainment Committee. In 1938, the clubhouse was sold, along with the boat house, a sad day for the financially troubled club.

Currently, the family of Bill & Mimi Anderson are the proud owners of this magnificent structure, and we understand Sunday dinner is still being served on the sun porch.

The Truesdale Lake Property Owners’ Association, Inc. is the outgrowth of a series of activities, by certain property owners in the Truesdale Lake Colony, undertaken for the protection and conservation of the Colony’s rights and services. These activities were formalized in the appointment of a “Water Committee” at the Annual Meeting of the Truesdale Lake Club held on June 5, 1943, the notice for which meeting stated among other things, that “consideration would be given to the Water System and Repair of Roads”.

Up until the summer of 1940 the Colony roads, under the ownership of the Truesdale Lake Corporation were in such a state of disrepair that they were dangerous to limb and prOperty. The Truesdale Lake Corporation, which was in financial diffculties at that time, did nothing about them.

During that summer, out of dire necessity, thirty-three of the Property owners raised $2,900 for re-surfacing the roads. Similarly, the summer of 1944, the prOperty owners, through the Truesdale Lake Club, financed another major repair and maintenance job to the roads.

The most serious blow to the physical well being of the community came in 1941. Because of financial inadequacy the Truesdale Lake Corporation stood idly by when the well pump on the hill site became a total loss. Again, as in 1940, some of the property owners banded together and raised $1,100 to replace that pump and to repair the pump on the site below the dam, despite the fact that they had theretofore regularly paid water charges billed by the Corporation. And as if that were not enough, the pump at the dam site broke down in the summer of 1943 through lack of adequate attention. This time the Water committee had to see to the repair of that pump.

By the spring of l944 it had become fixed in the minds of the water Committee, and other property owners that were concerned about the welfare of the Colony, that operation of the Water System and roads could no longer be left in the hands of outsiders.

At a meeting of property owners called by the Water Committee in May, the Committee was authorized to acquire the Water System and Roads, with the understanding that a new Association would be organized to operate them

for the benefit of the Colony. A community-spirited group of Truesdale Lake Colony property owners then underwrote the purchase on a cash basis, for which they were subsequently reimbursed by the new Association.

On July 27, 1944 the Truesdale Lake PrOperty Owners’ Association was incorporated under the laws of the State of New York and adopted purposes as contained in the Certificate of Incorporation printed.

On July 29, 1944 a meeting of members of the Association was held whereat plans were adopted for financing of the purchase by the Association of the Water and Roads from the aforesaid property owners.

In accordance with the action of the Association at its special meeting held April 2, 1955, the Board of Governors effected the establishment of a separate corporation to be charged with the Operation of the Association’s water system. This required a considerable legal effort for which the Association is indebted to the late Mr. Stanley Law Sabel. On May 23, 1955 the new corporation was duly incorporated under the regulations of the state of New York.

One of the original members of the Board of Directors was Mr. Charles Gristede of the Gristede food chain. Their home is currently owned and occupied by Mr. & Mrs. Frank Dees & family on Howe & Bouton Street.

In addition to the Gristede family Mr. & Mrs. Ernest Steidle, Bouton Street are original residents of T.L.P.O.A. No doubt, they remember when the East Side of the Lake contained nothing but woods and wild life.

Bill Morrill, who arrived a few years late, recalls the many parties around the lake. The “Moose Head” was the possession of the household until they held a gala party. Once the party was over, the moose head was passed on to the next family for a future gathering.

Bill credits our own Jack Fles for introducing chemical lake treatment to Truesdale some 25 years ago. Prior to chemicals, the weeds were cut “carted away every weekend by volunteers in the area, a job that they all dreaded, but had fun doing.

The daily mail was picked up by each family out on Main Street. One of the existing homes near the Happy Home Florist was the Country store and Post Office, and would stay open until 8 p.m. to accommodate the late commuters returning home from New York City.

Special thanks to Mr. Bill Morrill for digging into his files enabling us to Obtain this bit of historical data. There is certainly much more we could report, but we hOpe that you enjoyed learning something about the Birth of T.L.P.O.A. Inc.

Written by
Peter A. Brady (originally written 1960s?)

October 4, 2018
by rob
Comments Off on Lake Drawdown

Lake Drawdown

This is to let you know that plans are in place for Pond and Lake Connection (the company that has managed Truesdale Lake weed and algae control for the past two years) to commence work on the Truesdale Lake drawdown for 2018.

They will install the necessary pipes and pumps in early October. The actual drawdown will take place between October 15 – December 1, 2018. It is estimated that by the time that the drawdown is complete, the lake will be 2 – 3 feet lower than its usual winter height.

Riparian homeowners will have a chance to rake out the areas in front of their homes, or to work on stone walls or docks.

Once the drawdown is in place, the lake will be kept at that height until February 1, 2019. This will provide time for the lake bottom to compress, and also for (hopefully) cold winter weather to freeze exposed weeds. Beginning on or about February 1, 2019, the drawdown will end and the lake will begin to refill.

Given historical records, it is anticipated that the lake will be back to its usual height by about May 1, 2019. Obviously, the exact timing of the drawdown and all of these plans will be weather dependent. 

We will provide updates about the Truesdale Lake Drawdown from time to time as there is information to report.

We have additional information in the Project section of the Truesdale Lake website under Lake Drawdown.

June 22, 2018
by rob
Comments Off on Six Lewisboro Lakes Gain Special Status Under State Legislation – Press Release June 20, 2018

Six Lewisboro Lakes Gain Special Status Under State Legislation – Press Release June 20, 2018

News Release


State Assemblyman David Buchwald announced that the State Assembly and Senate have voted to pass legislation to make a group of lakes in Lewisboro eligible for more state funding.

All six lakes would be designated as official “inland waterways.” Each lake features lakefront communities, are located in the New York City watershed, and each faces challenges at a time when waterfronts are being recognized as catalysts to bring new energy to their communities.

The legislation (A.10443-A/S.8252-A) includes these waterways: in the northern part of the Town of Lewisboro, Lakes Waccabuc, Oscaleta, and Rippowam, also known as the tri-lakes, Lake Kitchawan and Lake Truesdale in South Salem, and Lake Katonah in Golden’s Bridge.

“By adding these lakes to New York State’s list of inland waterways, municipalities can develop a Local Waterfront Revitalization Program to pursue the goals of improved water quality, preservation of open space and wildlife habitat and promotion of tourism and economic development,” said Assemblyman David Buchwald (D-Mount Kisco). “This designation makes these communities eligible to pursue public and private funding for needed waterfront revitalization projects.”

“The Town of Lewisboro is very lucky in its lakes and the quality of the water in those lakes,” said Lewisboro Town Supervisor Peter Parsons. “We are grateful that inland waterways designations for six of our lakes have won legislative approval, placing us on a path to obtaining additional funding for needed improvements.”

Joe Niola, President of the Lake Kitchawan Association said, “On behalf of the 400-plus residents of Lewisboro’s Lake Kitchawan Association, I want to extend our heartfelt gratitude to our legislators in Albany–New York State Assemblyman David Buchwald and Senator Terrence Murphy–for their swift and successful efforts to push through legislation that will enable our community to obtain the funding necessary to significantly enhance Lake Kitchawan’s environment and revitalize our waterfront for generations to come.”

“I am pleased that six Lewisboro lakes have been added to the list of designated inland waterways,” said Three Lakes Council President, Janet Andersen. “This listing makes our town eligible to apply for new state funds to maintain and improve the water quality and environmental status of Lakes Oscaleta, Rippowam and Waccabuc.”

The bill to name the six lakes inland waterways was sponsored by Assemblyman Buchwald in the State Assembly and Senator Terrence Murphy (R-Yorktown) in the State Senate.

Contact: David Buchwald, Kerry Donovan (Communications Director) 914 468 4428

Link to pdf of press release: Six_Lewisboro_Lakes_Gain_Special_Status