By Samantha Smith, NewsRadio 830 WCCO

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Twenty-one area lakes have received an “A” grade from the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District.

Each year the district issues a report card on the health of lakes in the area, with an “A” to “F” range. The grades are based on water clarity, algae growth and nutrients.

“We’re fortunate to have such consistent water quality in the district … although there are slight variations in a lake’s grade from year to year, these functions are within the normal range we’ve seen recently,” said MCWD Lakes Water Quality Technician Kelly Dooley.

Communications Manager Telly Mamayek said they’re “very pleased with the water quality in this district as most lakes and bays in the report received a grade of ‘C’ or better.”

The number of lakes receiving the top grade in 2010 is up by five from the previous year and the number of “F” graded lakes decreased from four to one.

“A” graded lakes are generally healthy and well-suited for recreational use throughout the summer. While lakes that receive a “D” or “F” grade have limited transparency, severe algae problems and offer very limited recreational use.

Mamayek said area residents are doing a pretty good job of taking care of lakes in the Twin Cities but there is always more than can be done to improve water quality.

She recommends installing things such as rain gardens, shoreline plantings and rain barrels or just doing simple things such as picking up pet waste and bagging lawn clippings and leaves.

A total of 60 lakes in the 181 square-mile district were graded in the report, which comes out each spring prior to the state’s fishing opener.


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