Stream and Lake Stewardship

Many lakes have too much phosphorus, which can cause increased algae growth. When it rains, phosphorus from eroded soils, excess fertilizer, and leaking septic systems washes into ditches and streams and ends up in the lake. A little phosphorous from many homes can add up to big problems for lakes. The actions below can be taken to protect local streams and lakes and keep them healthy.

Maintain healthy streambanks and shorelines 

Healthy streambanks and shorelines have native plants to the water’s edge, including shrubs, trees or perennials. Natural vegetation can help filter sediment and nutrients out of stormwater runoff and helps reduce erosion by stabilizing streambanks and shorelines. 

Protect your lake or stream from septic system leaks

Aging septic systems may be a threat to public health and nearby lakes or streams. Routine inspections and maintenance are important to ensure your septic system is functioning properly and prevents leaks into both your yard and groundwater.

Get involved with the Lake Stewardship Program

The King County Lake Stewardship Program monitors the water quality of small lakes in King County to assess the real and potential changes over time. With funding by the King County Wastewater Treatment Division, Lake Leota will be monitored through the Lake Stewardship Program.

Volunteers for the Lake Stewardship Program will be trained on reliable, consistent, and accurate methods for monitoring the health of their lakes and ponds. In addition to water quality monitoring, volunteers keep track of recreational use and track potential nuisances, such as geese. They also report algal accumulations that could signal a health and safety threat, such as a toxic algae bloom.

The Lake Stewardship Program made educational flyers on shoreline restoration and best management practices for volunteers to post near Lake Leota. In addition, a mailer was sent out to Lake Leota and Cold Creek residents to share shoreline best management practices and encourage regular septic inspections. Please see the posters and mailer below. 

King County assesses the water quality monitoring data and writes annual reports for the lakes. Water quality data is available here at King County's Water Quality Data webpage.

If you have any questions about joining the Lake Stewardship Program or need replacement equipment, please contact the Lake Stewardship Program staff:

Chris Knutson
Wafa Tafesh

Lake Leota

Lake Leota
This project is funded by the King County Wastewater Treatment Division

This project is funded by the King County Wastewater Treatment Division.