Aquatic Weeds? Effective Management Will Depend on Your Unique Ecosystem
Lakes and ponds are home to many unique and beneficial species, but without proper management aquatic weeds and plant life can become a nuisance by destroying native habitat, clogging stormwater pipes, detracting from aesthetics and causing other problems in the ecosystem. Identifying the best management approach can be another challenge. Aquatic weed control is a nuanced problem, and the best management methods are usually influenced by many different variables.
Which Lake Weed Species Are You Dealing With?
Rather than making one-size-fits-all management recommendations, reputable lake and pond management professionals generally conduct an official aquatic weed survey before designing a customized management program. An onsite evaluation is the most direct, effective way to identify important physical factors within the waterbody, determine potential problem species, and consider the management goals of the property owner or community. Each of these variables is equally important in its own regard and requires a unique custom approach and management plan to effectively address.
Identifying Aquatic Weed Species
To safely eradicate targeted pond weeds, lake managers typically begin by properly identifying the invasive species that are present and taking careful note of their physical characteristics. Proper identification removes the risk of using an ineffective control measure—a mistake that can result in a large loss of time and resources. Plant identification is sometimes a difficult task, requiring dichotomous keys, stereoscopes, and even lab tests. Once the species has been properly identified, we will consider its physical requirements in order to develop a multi-faceted management approach.
Solutions for Managing Aquatic Weed Growth
Sustainable control of a problem species is the primary objective when developing a management plan. Lake management professionals utilize many products and services to eradicate undesirable invasive species. Some ponds can simply be managed through targeted hand pulling or biological control measures such as stocking triploid grass carp. Other situations may call for extensive vegetation and sediment removal through hydro-raking or dredging. More established infestations may require the use of a new “reduced risk” herbicide alternative called ProcellaCOR, which is designed to only impact target species. Working with a professional who understands these options and how to best use them is the most efficient way to ensure the safe, thorough resolution of your aquatic weed issue.
Helping You Reach Your Goals
While environmental balance and safety are of utmost importance, stakeholder goals are also at the forefront of our consideration when designing management programs. Just as no two waterbodies are the same, neither are stakeholder desires. A fishing and duck hunting pond owner will almost certainly have vastly different goals than a homeowners’ association with a five-acre pond within city limits. Each group has its own idea of what a perfect lake looks like. This is where communication becomes the key to reaching our client’s goals. We take the time to ask the right questions and allow the client to explain their vision. We communicate with our clients throughout the restoration process and beyond to ensure the health, beauty, and function of their waterbody continues to exceed their goals.
Achieve the Waterbody You Desire
Water resources with multiple stakeholders present their own challenges. However, our team is experienced in communicating with multiple stakeholders to develop goals and strategies tailored to the interests of the entire group. Programs are designed to correct existing problems, improve the quality of the lake or pond to fit the group’s desires, and provide ongoing education. Community education within these settings is especially important, as each small action by individuals has a cumulative effect on the aquatic system as a whole.
So, ultimately, the management approach we select depends on many different factors. We can solve your pond weed issues, but what are you looking to get out of your lake? Is it a family fishing pond for the grandkids to enjoy, or a lake serving 500 homeowners that enjoy everything from waterskiing to bass fishing? Once the right questions are asked, then we can then recommend an appropriate aquatic weed control plan and begin helping your waterbody reach its full potential.
Managing Nuisance Weeds and Algae
SOLitude Lake Management is a nationwide environmental firm committed to providing sustainable solutions that improve water quality, enhance beauty and preserve natural resources.
SOLitude’s team of aquatic scientists specializes in the development and execution of customized lake, stormwater pond, wetland and fisheries management programs. Services include water quality testing and restoration, algae and aquatic weed control, installation and maintenance of fountains and aeration systems, shoreline erosion control, muck and sediment removal and invasive species management. SOLitude partners with homeowners associations, golf courses, private landowners, businesses and municipalities. SOLitude Lake Management is part of Rentokil, a leading business services company, operating across the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.