Document Type


Study Date



The 2003 Colby Environmental Assessment Team chose to study the Threemile Pond watershed. The Threemile Pond watershed is located in Vassalboro, China., Windsor, and Augusta, Maine. Threemile Pond is a popular site for recreation and is home to a wide range of flora and fauna. Like all other lakes in Maine, it is a young lake. However, intensive human activity in the watershed contributes a substantial amount of nutrients and the lake has algal blooms annually in the summer months. The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of land use and development on the water quality of Threemile Pond. Physical and chemical parameters of the lake were evaluated in order to determine both the current water quality and trends in water quality over the years. The current land use patterns were also examined and categorized with respect to their effect on water quality. Development within the watershed was evaluated through the assessment of residences, septic systems and roads. The water budget and flushing rate for Threemile Pond were also calculated as well as the septic suitability and erosion potential of the soils in the watershed. The results of the various tests and measurements were used to develop a phosphorus model, which was used to predict present and future phosphorus loading. A Geographic Information System (GIS) was used to generate models of land use and soil characteristics in the Threemile Pond watershed. These models were used to predict future impacts of human activities in the watershed on lake water quality. The findings from the lake and watershed analysis can be used to make recommendations regarding the health of Threemile Pond. Water quality and land use assessment in this study was conducted by the Colby Environmental Assessment Team during the summer and fall of 2003.


Publication Date: Spring 2004

Date of Study: August through November 2003


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