Milfoil Marker Buoys

Eurasian Milfoil Buoys/Markers

In the summer of 2017, yellow buoys (yellow balls) started popping up on Lake Bernard to remind boaters where to avoid Eurasian milfoil beds as much as possible. The original plan was to use the yellow buoys to mark where burlap was to be installed to cover large beds of milfoil. We followed the lead of the Blue Sea Lake Association which is using this type of marking and now other lake associations have started or are about to start using these balloon-type buoys.

As of January 2019, we have yet to receive the proper authorization to commercially place burlap (anchored by sand) with the help of an automated barge. While we wait for this authorization, boaters, kayakers, canoeists, and paddlers need to know where milfoil can be found and to avoid navigating or swimming over it.

If authorization to industrially place burlap mats over milfoil is eventually granted, it will take anywhere between five and 10 years to cover the lake’s major milfoil beds. In the meantime, we will continue to use yellow buoys for many more years.

Where can you find it?

Eurasian milfoil is found in areas between one and approximately 20 feet deep, usually in shallow shorelines extending towards deeper waters. Milfoil beds can also be found in the middle of an area such as in the Narrows or in the middle of the eastern section of the Turtle Bay. Visually locating the milfoil can be challenging for many reasons such as blinding sunlight or when water levels are unusually high.

Important note: yellow buoys are placed (or will be placed) to discourage boaters from venturing beyond the buoys. We are fully aware that many cottagers find themselves between the buoys and their shoreline and need to pass through the milfoil beds to get to open water. The buoys serve as warning to other boaters to stay away from those areas.

Placement of yellow buoys

This summer, you will find yellow buoys at the following locations:

  1. Two buoys in Mitchell’s Bay near Chemin des Bois facing northeast towards Rowe’s Island. Please avoid passing between the buoys and the shoreline.
  2. Eastern section of Mitchell’s Bay, buoys on two sides of Pin Point island. Please do not go around the island.
  3. Small bay on the north shore just before entering Sawmill Bay, where boat launch is located. Please do not enter the bay.

Information on additional buoys during the summer will be posted on this page.