LETTERS TO THE EDITOR | Goss Lake loses its logs
April 27, 2012 · Updated 3:18 PM
To the editor:
The water is high at Goss Lake, and rising water floats logs from the shores and coves out onto the lake and into the public domain. Wind currents push them to the public access. Recently, a group of logs collected at the public access and boat launch. A homeowner adjacent to the public access wanted the logs removed. The call went out for volunteers with chainsaws to come help remove the logs from the public access and cut them up for hauling off site. There was little outcry from within the Goss Lake community (maybe just from myself) and so the deed was done as scheduled on April 20.
The location of the logs at the public access was what really sealed their fate. The volunteers wanted the logs out before the start of fishing season. I disagree that their removal was necessary for safe boat launching. Although log presence might have caused a few moments of inconvenience, people launching boats are normally capable of pushing logs out of the way.
Puget Sound waterways were once lined with vegetative masses supported by logs. The Army Corps of Engineers removed all of it in navigable waters long ago, the thinking of the time being that anything floating is junk. Consequently, the role these thousands of floating islands played in the ecosystem is unknown.
Goss Lake is a valuable resting spot for hundreds of migrating birds, in addition to hosting several species year-round. Likely, generations of waterfowl used the same logs at Goss Lake year after year. The four logs removed April 20 were some of the largest left on the lake. The old bits of hardware found in some of the largest logs have a negligible effect on the logs’ contribution to habitat enrichment. You would be hard pressed to find four logs remaining on Goss Lake as large as they were.
The water continues to rise on Goss Lake, and a few small logs are now free floating, moving with the wind currents towards the public access, where they will likely be removed. Modern building practices are not contributing any new logs to the lake. Once the logs are gone, they’re gone for good.