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    Invasive Species Control in Public Pond
    Aquatic Weed and Algae Control Case Study

    Location and Acreage:
    Wareham, MA | 150-Acres

    Project Timeframe: 
    2016 to present

    Project Manager:
    Amanda Mahaney, Aquatic Biologist

    Site Description:
    This property, located in Wareham, Massachusetts, is a 150-acre waterbody owned by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and is managed by the MA Division of Fish and Wildlife (MA DFG). It is used heavily for recreational activities, such as boating, fishing and swimming, and supports moderate residential development. The pond has an average depth of six to eight feet with a maximum depth of twelve feet; therefore, emergent and submerged vegetation has the capability to flourish, rapidly expanding into dense colonies. Invasive, non-indigenous submersed vegetation (fanwort and variable watermilfoil) inundated the pond causing a decline in water quality and severely limiting recreational activities for residents and guests.

    Aquatic Invasive Plants Investing Lake   After Aquatic Herbicide Treatment

    Scope of Work:
    Aquatic invasive plant management, herbicide treatments, permitting, monitoring 

    Project Description:
    A multi-year, three-phase, aquatic plant management program was initiated in 2016. Recently, we completed Phase II of the pond’s restoration project. Phase II involved treating a 37-acre segment of the densest thicket of invasive plant growth, which is the largest treatment area of the three phases. This aquatic plant management program is particularly significant because this waterbody is located upstream from four rare and endangered aquatic vegetative species. The species of concern include one grass (salt reed grass), and three herbaceous plants. It was uncertain whether the herbicide used in this management program could potentially cause harm to the four state-listed, protected plant species. Because of this uncertainty, lengthy permitting processes were carried through by both state and private participants. Accordingly, the herbicide treatment plan was structured specifically to lessen impacts to the non-target plants while accomplishing desired control of fanwort.

    An extensive monitoring plan and herbicide residue regime, followed by a post-treatment vegetation survey, was agreed upon by those involved to further alleviate concern of all possible ill effects of the herbicide on the protected plants. Monitoring of this property began on the day of treatment and continued through the next few weeks where specified observations were recorded from six pre-marked sampling stations. Initial results of Phase II of the management program were extremely positive. Fanwort, as the primary species specifically targeted, fell from the water column within forty-eight hours posttreatment. Although not directly targeted, variable watermilfoil was also heavily damaged within the treatment area. It was immediately apparent that residents and visitors were finally able to enjoy the pond again. Observations and testing results concluded Phase II as an overall success, opening swimming areas, fishing accesses and boating lanes, all the while conserving the rare and endangered species. But, as predicted, it began to display signs of regrowth two weeks after treatment. As this phased management program concludes, ongoing annual management will be refocused on reducing regrowth and overall density of non-indigenous vegetation.

    Guide To Sustainable Pond Algaes & Aquatic Weed Control
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