Thursday, July 19, 2012

Eurasian Watermilfoil Management Summit Planned

Eurasian Watermilfoil Management Summit: Lessons Learned from the Adirondack Region will be a free event hosted at the Horicon Town Hall in Brant Lake from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday, August 16th.

The program will feature presentations on the status of the Eurasian watermilfoil invasion and its management in the Adirondack region, control options, planning considerations, case studies from various lakes, permitting, financing, lake-friendly land-use recommendations and spread prevention. Speakers will include state agency staff, elected officials, not-for-profit representatives, shoreowners and lake managers. 

Resource managers, elected officials, members of governmental and nongovernmental organizations, lake association members and shoreowners are all being encouraged to attend. “While some groups have been managing milfoil for years, others are just starting their management programs. There are many lessons to be shared from the great work underway in the region. The Summit is designed to serve as a forum for information and discussion about management and the path forward for battling Eurasian watermilfoil.” said Hilary Smith, Director of the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program.

Eurasian watermilfoil is one of the most widespread aquatic invasive plants across the country. It has invaded over 50 lakes and ponds in the Adirondacks alone and threatens to spread to more waterways by hitchhiking on recreational gear. Once an infestation starts, it is extremely difficult, and very costly, to eliminate. Control efforts must be sustained from year to year to set management projects up for success.

Many communities in the Adirondacks are struggling with managing infestations. Uncertainties about which treatment options to choose, understanding and complying with permitting conditions and challenges in finding, and sustaining, resources can be daunting.

“We are very happy to serve as a sponsor of the Eurasian Watermilfoil Management Summit. The Adirondack Lake Alliance was formed on the basis of sharing ideas and experiences, and the Summit is the ultimate opportunity to share expertise. As property owners with limited budgets, it is important to us to keep invasive species to a minimum without wasting our resources on methods that others in the region have found ineffective. This idea was the crux of developing the Summit, and we have some of the most experienced experts and representatives of local lake associations speaking on the subject.” said Bill McGhie, President of the East Shore Schroon Lake Association.

There is no registration fee to attend the Summit, but participants are asked to RSVP by Thursday, August 2nd so that organizers can plan accordingly for seating, supporting materials and refreshments. RSVP to Allie Smith at [email protected] with “EWM Summit” in the subject heading of your email and include the number of participants attending, names, and organization or association, or call 518-668-5773.

The Summit is organized by partners of the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program, Adirondack Lake Alliance and Lake Champlain Lake George Regional Planning Board.

More information about the Summit, including a preliminary program, is online.

Photo: Diver hand harvesting Eurasian watermilfoil (courtesy Adirondack Watershed Institute).

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