Eurasian water milfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum) is a feathery underwater foliage that was introduced to the eastern United States at least as long ago as the 1940s, but it may have arrived as early as the late 1800s. Milfoil can drastically alter a water body’s ecology as it forms very dense mats of vegetation on the surface of the water and can shade out the native vegetation which ultimately, can alter the species composition of the water. This plant is not a valuable food source for waterfowl and plant biomass can become so dense that predator fish will lose their foraging space and will be less effective at controlling prey species resulting in an imbalanced fish community. Dense beds of Eurasian water milfoil make recreational activities such as boating, fishing and swimming nearly impossible and can be nursery areas for mosquito larvae. A lake heavily infested with Eurasian water milfoil will be aesthetically displeasing which results in reduced property values.
2018 Eurasian Watermilfoil Delineation, June 18, 2018
Eurasian Water Milfoil in Lake John
Eurasian water milfoil has been identified in Lake John and the association has commissioned two aquatic surveys that have confirmed this. Below is a map identifying the areas Eurasian water milfoil has been found and the treatment areas in 2013.
Association Efforts to Treat Eurasian Water Milfoil in Lake John
We received the EWM permit to chemical treat 21 acres of Eurasian Water Milfoil on June 5 and 6, 2014. Surveys had previously identified the shallow vegetated areas along the west shoreline and the northwest finger bay as sensitive areas so chemical treatments in or near emergent and floating-leaf vegetation was restricted. These areas are sensitive due to the documented presence of intolerant fish species in combination with a high percentage of plant cover and these areas will need to be hand pulled. Several volunteers have come forward to help with this, either by scuba diving or snorkeling. If you would like to help, please contact Kirk Linderholm at firstname.lastname@example.org . Hand pulling was also conducted in August of 2013 by volunteers Kirk Linderholm, Rich Myers, John Signorelli, Jim Davis, Dave Kubisiak and Melanie Warm-Taylor.
What can you do to help with Eurasian Watermilfoil in Lake John?
If you see pieces of EWM floating, carry a garbage bag in your boat and dispose onshore. EWM is identified as follows: each leaf has 10-21 pairs of leaflets; leaflets are usually closely-spaced; leaves are limp when out of water; finely divided leaflets 1/2 inch long 12-16 pair; long branching stems near the surface with soft, feathery leaves; leaves usually attached in whorls of four, but sometimes 3-5. It differs from Northern watermilfoil (which is a native plant and good for the lake) as follows: leaves attached to stem in groups of 4 (rarely 5); each leaf has 5-9 pair of leaflets; leaflets are widely-spaced; leaves are rigid when out of water; plant does not branch at surface; look for turions (buds of densely packed leaves).