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    The Benefits of Utilizing Grass Carp in Your Lake Management Plan

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Apr 08, 2020

    Grass Carp

    Written by Aaron Cushing, Wildlife and Fisheries Biologist, Environmental Scientist

    As professionals in the lake and pond management industry, we view ourselves as the caretakers of our freshwater resources. As such, we continually seek ways to improve and create Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs that preserve those valuable ecosystems. If an improvement can be made to an IPM that is beneficial to the environment and can possibly save pond owners money, we view it as a win-win for all. One such improvement is the use of Grass Carp to help manage nuisance vegetation in lakes and ponds.

    A voracious plant-eating fish native to Asia, Grass Carp were originally imported to the United States in the early 1960s to serve as a “biological control” option for nuisance aquatic vegetation. Unfortunately, as a non-native species without natural predators, they also had the ability to reproduce quickly, posing a substantial risk to the environment. In the 1980s, researchers developed a process to create a sterile triploid fish that cannot reproduce and establish undesired populations. Currently, commercial hatcheries propagate Triploid Grass Carp for stocking in many states across the country.

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    Topics: Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Fisheries Management, Fisheries Projects

    Case Study: Managing Invasive Watermilfoil in Reservoir

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Mar 10, 2020

    before-and-after_blog-2

    Written by Noel Browning, Aquatic Biologist

    A Central Colorado town about 25 miles north of Denver has experienced rapid population growth over the past decade. A large 30 surface acre drinking water storage reservoir serves the growing population of more than 25,000 people. The lake is classified as a “no contact” waterbody, which prohibits swimming, wading and boating, but is otherwise open to the public for recreation and fishing. This unique ecosystem of the lake and surrounding landscape is home to several species of warm-water fish, waterfowl, birds, amphibians, and other small mammals. This waterbody is an important asset for its drinking water supply as well as a venue for the outdoor recreation valued highly by locals.

    In 2019, SOLitude Lake Management was contacted regarding concerns of over abundant aquatic vegetation growth in the reservoir. During the initial site visit, the plant causing concerns within the resource was identified as watermilfoil. The client was mainly concerned with their infrastructure continually becoming clogged with the vegetation as well as the nuisance growth limiting fishing access for the public.

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    Topics: Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Invasive Species

    SOLitude and BioSafe Systems Improve Pond with Organic Management Tool

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Mar 03, 2020

    A Florida community in the Greater Tampa area is home to a bird rookery, giving it an up close look at the unique species that call the property home. Wood storks, great egrets, snowy egrets, great blue herons and white ibis are enjoyed by residents and local bird watchers alike. However, this exciting window into nature is accompanied by a severe nutrient loading problem. Over the years, watershed inputs, recurring bird feedings, and bird droppings from the trees above the 2-acre community pond have created imbalanced water quality conditions that support the growth of unrelenting algae and cyanobacteria blooms. In addition to causing an eyesore, these harmful blooms are known to create toxins that can threaten the rare wildlife and endanger the health of community members.

    The bird species that live on the property are protected, making long-term management of the undesirable blooms a challenge. The community chooses to avoid many traditional solutions to ensure the natural characteristics of the ecosystem are maintained year-round. Often, this commitment means sacrificing the aesthetic beauty of the property. However, in 2019, SOLitude Lake Management introduced an alternative option to the community - one that aligns with the environmental principles of the residents while also nurturing the health and appearance of the aquatic environment.

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    Topics: SOLitude News, Water Quality/Nutrient Remediation, Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Aquatic Products

    Case Study: Eradicating Invasive Floating Heart with ProcellaCOR

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Jan 14, 2020

    Before and After

    Controlling nuisance weeds and invasive pond plants can be challenging and, in many cases, herbicides are the most effective long-term solution. When properly applied by licensed professionals, EPA-registered herbicides can be invaluable tools for safe, fast and cost-effective aquatic plant management. A community was grateful for a new highly-selective herbicide option called ProcellaCOR after struggling for some time to control the invasive aquatic plant floating heart (Nymphoides cristata) in their Florida waterbody.

    This property in Florida is a collection of suburban residential homes surrounding a golf course located at the northern tip of the Everglades. Due to southeast Florida’s tropical climate and year-round growing season, many plants—both native and non-native—become invasive. This requires constant monitoring and management on the land and in the water. Algae and invasive water plants such as vallisneria (tape grass) and hydrilla are commonly managed by recurring herbicide treatments in order to maintain proper water flow and water quality health.

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    Topics: Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Stormwater BMPs

    Top 10 Pond Management Articles of 2019... Hint, #1 is Slimy & Toxic!

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Jan 07, 2020

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    That's a wrap! What a year it has been. In honor of the new year, we gathered all of our educational articles and picked the top 10 most-viewed of 2019. Read our most popular articles covering toxic algae, aquatic weed control, fisheries and wildlife management and new innovations and technologies.

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    Topics: Water Quality/Nutrient Remediation, Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Fisheries Management, Pond Management Best Practices, Published Articles

    Harvesting or Hydro-raking... Which Mechanical Solution Is Best?

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Sep 29, 2019

    Hydro-rake-1

    Written by Industry Expert Jeff Castellani, Director of Mechanical Operations

    Rarely is there one specific remedy for the restoration of a waterbody. Restoration often requires a multiyear management program encompassing a combination of aquatic management tools and techniques, such as herbicide and algaecide treatments, nutrient remediation, aeration and biological augmentation. Mechanical removal is an additional management method that may be incorporated into a restoration program, and has a number of ecological benefits including nutrient mitigation, water circulation and open water habitat restoration.

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    Topics: Water Quality/Nutrient Remediation, Aquatic Weeds and Algae

    New Innovative Solutions in Your Lake Manager’s ‘Toolbox’

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Sep 19, 2019

    Golf-1

    AS SEEN IN Turf Magazine: Written by Shannon Junior, Ecologist

    Herbicides and algaecides have traditionally been used to maintain balanced ecosystems in lakes and ponds—but wouldn’t it be exciting if there was a new technology or process that could totally revolutionize the way we approach environmental problems in our communities? Industry leaders have long understood that proactive, holistic management strategies are the key to achieve long-term balance in our aquatic environments; however, our toolbox of sustainable lake management solutions has not always grown at the same pace as our knowledge. That’s why we are so excited about recent advances in aquatic habitat restoration.

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    Topics: Water Quality/Nutrient Remediation, Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Invasive Species, Published Articles

    Nuisance Algae & Invasive Hydrilla Management in Community Ponds

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Sep 05, 2019

    Hydrialla in hand_Will_2015-1

    AS SEEN IN CAI Central Virginia's Consensus Magazine: Written by Kyle Finerfrock, Environmental Scientist

    Without proactive management in place, the resulting environmental conditions can spur a perfect storm of nuisance aquatic weeds and algae in your lake, stormwater pond or reservoir. Under unhealthy conditions, it is common to find invasive plants like hydrilla, which can compete with and choke out native vegetation. Poor water quality may also lead to the development of various forms of nuisance algae, as well as toxin-producing harmful algal blooms (HABs).

    Before you can implement a sustainable management plan to restore balance and beauty to the waterbody, it’s crucial to properly identify the species ailing your lake or pond. Hydrilla has several distinguishing characteristics. Its small leaves are arranged in whorls of three to eight, and these leaves are heavily serrated and can be seen without the aid of magnification. Reproduction typically occurs through fragmentation, although hydrilla also produces tubers, which are subterranean, potato-like structures. These tubers can stay dormant in the sediment for up to 12 years, causing significant challenges in eradication. Hydrilla forms dense
    mats at the surface of lakes and ponds, which limits recreational use and diminishes the aesthetic appeal of the waterbody. This invasive plant also out-competes native aquatic plant species, reducing biodiversity and negatively impacting water quality.

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    Topics: Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Pond Management Best Practices

    Case Study: Nanobubble Aeration Transforms a Golf Course Lake in FL

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Aug 15, 2019

    Nanobubble Aeration

    Nanobubble aeration is an exciting new technology that is helping restore water quality in some of the most problematic lakes and ponds. One such lake that greatly benefitted from the infusion of these tiny bubbles is located in a large development district in Bonita Springs, FL. This 1.3-acre lake was persistently plagued by multiple species of algae—including filamentous green algae and potentially toxic cyanobacteria (blue-green algae). The pond is located adjacent to a golf course and has multiple homes around its perimeter, making water quality restoration a priority. Historically, the 8 ft deep lake underwent extensive algaecide treatments with little long-term success.

    Due to difficulties faced in conventional control management, the lake was deemed a candidate for control using new nanobubble aeration technology. Nanobubble technology is designed to exceed the oxygenation capabilities of traditional aeration systems.

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    Topics: Aquatic Weeds and Algae, Aeration

    7 Tips to Help Protect Your Family & Pets From Dangerous Toxic Algae

    by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Aug 13, 2019

    Holding down the fort_CloudsandDog_Timberlake_ColumbiaMissouri_BrentW_05-2016-1-1

    Over the weekend, there were several cases reported of dogs passing away after swimming in lakes and ponds containing toxic algae. Though public knowledge about Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) is increasing, many remain unaware of the dangerous effects HABs can have on pets, wildlife and humans. Common experiences include skin rashes, liver and kidney toxicity, nervous system problems, and respiratory complications. In more severe cases, exposure or digestion of these toxins can be deadly and has suspected links to degenerative diseases like ALS, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

    Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) can occur naturally, but have been a problem for decades due to the negative environmental impacts associated with urban development, mass agriculture and pollution. To help limit the growth of HABs in your community waterbodies, SOLitude Lake Management®, an industry leader in lake, stormwater pond, wetland and fisheries management services, recommends the following sustainable tips to homeowners, golf courses and municipalities:

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    Topics: Water Quality/Nutrient Remediation, Aquatic Weeds and Algae