ALERT: Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) have been observed in the south eastern end of the lake.  LEARN MORE


Lake Friendly Living is a way of life.

For future generations to enjoy Skaneateles Lake, watershed-wide collaboration and personal commitment from everyone who loves the lake is required. As a member of the lake community, there are many things you can do at home to fight threats to the uniquely clear waters of Skaneateles Lake.

What YOU Can Do:
  • More meadows, less lawns

  • Minimize pollutants and microplastics

  • Use phosphorous-free fertilizer

  • Clean, drain, and dry your boat

  • Maintain your septic system

  • and much more!


Lake Friendly Living is a regional campaign promoting environmentally-sound behaviors in our everyday lives that affect lake health. Our hope is for all residents in the watershed to take the pledge and be mindful how our daily lives affect this precious resource – and, you can receive and display a sign that shows you practice Lake Friendly Living!

Inside the Guide

Making Changes That Make A Difference

While we all enjoy the lake in different ways, we share a communal responsibility to take care of it. Fortunately, the tips and tactics of Lake Friendly Living are easy to implement. We encourage you to make them part of your life and share them with your family and neighbors.

Lake and
Watershed Facts

Lawn Care & Landscaping


Septic Systems



Threats to the Lake

Threats to Skaneateles Lake come in many sizes and forms, from harmful phosphorous-rich fertilizers to invasive aquatic vegetation. These unwanted influences disturb the natural balance of the lake, affecting everything from water clarity to the safety of drinking water.

Among other critical efforts funded through memberships, donations, and grants, the SLA focuses on three major ongoing dangers:

Harmful Algal Blooms

Harmful algal blooms (HABs) occur when colonies of blue-green algae (cyanobacteria) grow out of control and produce toxins that can be harmful to people, pets, and marine life.

Eurasian watermilfoil is a fast-spreading invasive aquatic vegetation. Without
mitigation, milfoil can grow into
thick mats, covering acres of the lake surface.

Hydrilla, an invasive species, is a serious threat in the region. It is more aggressive than milfoil, and other lakes are spending millions to combat it. To date, monitoring at launch sites has kept Skaneateles Lake free of hydrilla.

Join us to help fight these threats

Lake Friendly Living Coalition of the Finger Lakes

As watershed residents, we all share the responsibility in protecting the health of our lakes. We rely on our lakes for drinking water, economic vitality, and as a recreational resource.

What happens around your home matters to the health of the lakes. You can make a difference by becoming informed of the issues that plague the Finger Lakes, and by taking action to make positive change.

The Lake Friendly Living Coalition of the Finger Lakes represents CANANDAIGUA, CAYUGA, KEUKA, OTISCO, OWASCO, SENECA, and SKANEATELES lakes.

Visit the Lake Friendly Living coalition website
In Memory of Andrew Odlum

The Community Guide to Lake Friendly Living was made possible by the very generous memorial donations to the Skaneateles Lake Association from family members, friends and colleagues of Andrew Odlum. Andrew deeply cared about the preservation of the lake. He especially enjoyed eagle sightings, the natural beauty of the South end, and loved swimming by Staghorn Cliffs.