Ducks Unlimited’s interest in the area comes from wanting to create a stable habitat for birds and fish in the area.
“Our goal when creating a control structure is to stabilize the water levels,” says Dan Sears, wetland maintenance supervisor for Ducks Unlimited.
The concrete structure itself is about 25 years old, and was installed in a joint effort between the former town of Liverpool and Ducks Unlimited. Before the structure was put in place, the water levels would fluctuate too much to provide a stable habitat.
The ladder section is made from plain spruce wood, which needs to be replaced every 15 to 20 years says Sears. They do not use pressure treated lumber because of the chemicals that can leach into the water.
The design used had a specific purpose as well. Sloped ramps allow easier access for fish to jump, while the ramps themselves alternate from side to side to slow down the flow of water.
It took a team of two about two days to fix the structure, thought Sears says a lot of that is waiting for the water levels to go down once the gates are first removed.
Ducks Unlimited inspects the structure once a year, however they also partner with the Region of Queens to help keep the waterways clear during the year. One of the frequent problems says Sears are beavers trying to dam up the end of the pond.
Each year the pond is stocked with Trout from the Mersey Fish Hatchery, to provide a little interest for anglers.