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Heavy Rains Mean More Visitors, Wildlife for Ozarks Lakes

While the heavy rain may have been a headache for some, it resulted in some very positive news for local lakes.
Fellows Lake at Maxium Capacity
Fellows Lake at Maxium Capacity/ Photo Credit: Fellows Lake

After heavy rains earlier this week, some local residents experienced flooding--last year at this time, we were in the midst of a serious drought. While the heavy rain may have been a headache for some, it resulted in some very positive news for local lakes. KSMU’s Shannon Bowers reports.

Local meteorologists say that Springfield has received almost two inches more rainfall so far this year than it got for the entire year of 2012. All this rain is making a big impact on local lakes, increasing not only the amount of water but also how people use it.

David Riggs has been an administrator at Lake Springfield for seven years. He says that the rain has brought in lots of lotus blooms, fish, and happy lake-goers. During the weekends this year, Lake Springfield has anywhere between 200-300 visitors...and that's a very different story from last summer.

“Yeah, last year we just had very few people out. People said the heat was one thing. The water was the other,” said Riggs.

Last year's falling water levels also had an effect on Fellows Lake, the main source for Springfield’s  water. According to Joel Alexander from City Utilities, during the driest part of August, the lake dipped down to below 65%.  Thanks to the rainfall, Fellows Lake is currently at 94.7%.

“If you go out and look at the lake today, the lake looks full. It would be really hard to distinguish a 94.7% to a 100%. Other than, it might not be going over the spillway,” said Alexander.

Springfield has a good chance of seeing some more storms this weekend and all throughout next week.

For KSMU News, I’m Shannon Bowers.