Great Lakes water levels

TRAVERSE CITY, MI (AP)--   A new forecast says Great Lakes levels are likely to remain unusually high and may set additional records.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers office in Detroit on Monday released its outlook for the next six months.

Hydrologist Keith Kompoltowicz says a wet October interrupted the usual fall drop-off of water levels.

Storms over Lakes Michigan, Huron and Superior caused beach erosion, flooding and damage to seawalls and roads.

DETROIT, MI--   The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says high water levels on the Great Lakes will continue into this fall. 

Preliminary data indicates Lake Superior tied its record high in August. Lake Erie established a new record high. Lakes Michigan, Huron and Ontario were slightly below their record highs, but still very high compared to average.

MARQUETTE, MI--   High water levels on the Great Lakes are making breakwaters and other such structures more dangerous.

David Wright is with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. He says breakwaters were designed as navigation aids—not for public access—and have tripping hazards.

“That risk is further heightened due to high water levels. You’re more inclined to see over-topping waves, you’re going to see more often wet surfaces that can be slippery on some of the structures,” he says.

Wright adds wave action can also make it dangerous for swimmers.

DETROIT, MI (AP)--   Water levels in two of the Great Lakes are the highest ever recorded. 

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said Tuesday that Lakes Erie and Ontario last month reached their highest points since record-keeping began in 1918.

Also setting a new mark was Lake St. Clair, which is part of the waterway linking Lakes Huron and Erie.

Meanwhile, Lake Superior's level set a record for the month of June. Lakes Huron and Michigan missed setting a monthly record by less than an inch.

GLEN HAVEN, Mich. (AP) — Surging water levels are making matters worse for a Great Lakes shorebird that's already on the endangered list.
   Piping plovers build nests and raise their young on beaches around the lakes. Coastline development has shrunk their habitat and caused their numbers to plummet. Officials say 67 pairs were counted last year.
   As the lakes reach some of their highest levels on record, the plovers are being squeezed further. Scientists say it's forcing some to move closer to trees and shrubs, where they're more vulnerable to predators.

National Park Service

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — State officials are warning people using Michigan's lakes, rivers and streams to exercise caution due to higher than normal water levels on many of them.
     The Department of Natural Resources says boaters, anglers and others should have a clear understanding of state boating rules and regulations and local watercraft controls.
     In southeastern Michigan, conservation officers have increased marine patrols in response to high water levels. They say many boaters along the St. Clair River are creating wakes in no-wake portions of the waterway.

EAST LANSING, MI (AP)--   High water in the Great Lakes may spell trouble for the piping plover, an endangered bird that builds its nests on shorelines.

Water levels have surged in recent years as the lakes bounced back from record-setting lows. Vincent Cavalieri of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says that means narrower beaches and less room for the plover.

The most recent count last year turned up 67 breeding pairs of the sand-colored birds. That's an improvement from the low point of 12 pairs in 1990 but a slight drop from 76 pairs two years ago.

TRAVERSE CITY, MI (AP)--   Federal officials predict water levels will surge to record highs in some areas of the Great Lakes over the next six months. 

A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers report released Monday says the lakes have been rising steadily for several years and are getting an extra boost as winter's melting snow mingles with recent heavy rainfall.

The Corps' Detroit district office says levels on Lake Superior and Lake Erie are expected to break records set decades ago.

Bryan Mitchell / Special to Detroit News

MT. PLEASANT, MI (MPRN)--   Forecasts say the Great Lakes will see above-average water levels this year, continuing a trend that began in 2013.

The forecast says water levels throughout the Great Lakes are currently more than a foot above average.

Sabrina Jauernik is a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gaylord. She says this year the high levels are a combination of more rainfall, and ice cover has prevented evaporation during the winter.

DETROIT, MI (AP)--   Experts are predicting higher-than-normal water levels on the Great Lakes this summer, some of which may set records. 

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers office in Detroit recently issued its latest six-month forecast for the lakes.

The Detroit News reports that Lake Superior is unusually high and by May could reach a record set in the mid-1980s. Lake Erie also could hit record highs in late spring.

Lakes Huron and Michigan should be above normal but aren't expected to break records.