Now that spring is here, aquatic plants are beginning to flourish. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Ashley McGovern has an update on the battle against the Eurasian watermilfoil:
Now that spring is here, aquatic plants are beginning to flourish. The
Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Ashley McGovern has an update on the battle against the
The Eurasian watermilfoil originated in Europe and Asia and has been found in the US for more
than 80 years. Watermilfoil can be transferred from lake to lake by boaters. The plant can hinder
recreational activities, like swimming and fishing, and can harm native ecosystems.
Lake associations and ecologists are trying to find ways to stop the spread of this invasive plant.
Bernd Blossey is an ecologist with Cornell University. He says people use different tactics to try to
get rid of watermilfoil.
“Some people promote using aquatic herbicides but that’s never a long-term solution—the plant
simply comes back.”
Another technique used is called biological control. That’s introducing natural enemies, such as
insects, that feed on the plant.
“Biological control doesn’t try to eradicate a plant, it just tries to reduce it’s population level.”
Blossey says it’s important to increase awareness of invasive species like watermilfoil and to keep
in mind that using herbicides is just a temporary solution to a tough problem.
For the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, I’m Ashley McGovern.