Aquatic Invasives Harvested in Long Lake

Aquatic Invasive Plants to be Hand Harvested from Long Lake throughout the Summer of 2017:

Variable-leaf milfoil will be removed from Long Lake by the Paul Smith’s College Adirondack Watershed Institute (PSCAWI) with funds awarded to PSCAWI by the Environmental Protection Agency through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

PSCAWI will utilize a five-person control team consisting of four divers and one top-water support person.  The divers will remove the milfoil by hand using proven techniques developed by PSCAWI over the last 15 years.  The Long Lake Association (LLA), in collaboration with the Town of Long Lake staff, will bring the harvested milfoil to the Long Lake Transfer Station for composting.  Pending approval of a permit by the APA, removal will begin on July 10th and will continue for about ten weeks.  The control team will return again for ten more weeks in 2018 to complete removal.

Our goal is to eradicate this species from Long Lake and to have the lake declared free of aquatic invasive species.  By definition, a species is considered eradicated if it is not observed for three years after control ends.  Since it is unlikely that we will eradicate variable-leaf milfoil from Long Lake in two years, the LLA has committed to seek funds through grants, fund-raising, and support from the Town of Long Lake to continue the control program in later years.

Variable-leaf milfoil was first reported in Long Lake in 2006.  This aquatic plant is usually very invasive and as such is ranked very high by New York State as a threat to waterbodies.  Variable-leaf milfoil typically forms dense beds that broach the surface, preventing use and enjoyment of large areas of lakes invaded by this species (as is the case in the Fulton Chain and Raquette Lake).  Fortunately, though variable-leaf milfoil has been present in Long Lake for at least 11 years, it is not a dominant species nor has it established any beds.  We believe this lack of invasive behavior is partly explained by the large fluctuations in water level in Long Lake that provides a natural means to control this species.

When you are out on the lake this summer, please be on the lookout for diver down flags and stay at least 300 feet away to protect the divers.  You are more than welcome to stop and observe the control team in action.

For more information and contact information, check out the Long Lake Association website at www.longlakeassociation.org

Long Lake