No place in the state or nation is more vulnerable to aquatic invasive species (AIS) than the pristine waters of the Adirondacks. New York already has the highest number of non-native forest pests in the country and is adjacent to the continent’s main gateway for the introduction and spread of aquatic invasives — the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway. As the map shows, the Adirondack Park is literally surrounded by waterways that harbor dozens of destructive species threatening the Park. » Continue Reading.
Posts Tagged ‘Aquatic Invasive Species’
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced that Jason Bair of Macedon, Wayne County, reeled in a state record-breaking freshwater drum from Oneida Lake, Oneida County. Caught on June 16, and weighing in at 36 pounds, the new record drum surpassed the previous state record set in 2016 by more than 6 pounds.
Bair’s freshwater drum marks the fourth state record drum caught since 2005. While records for other more common sportfish have remained unbroken for years. In its announcement of the new record, DEC stated: “it appears that drum are growing to much larger sizes than they ever have in many New York waters. This growth is likely due to their ability to effectively forage on the abundant invasive quagga and/or zebra mussels found in these waters.” » Continue Reading.
On July 29, watercraft inspectors inspected a pair of personal watercraft attempting to launch at the State boat launch on Upper Saranac Lake, subsequently detecting and removing a strand of hydrilla (water thyme, or Hydrilla verticillata), a fast-growing invasive aquatic plant currently established in several New York lakes. This is the first confirmed instance of hydrilla detected in the history of the Adirondack Park’s aquatic invasive species prevention efforts.
According to lake stewards, the watercraft on the trailer carrying hydrilla had both been sealed by lake stewards from the Lake George Park Commission, indicating they had recently passed an invasive species inspection.
On some Adirondack lakes stewards perform boat and trailer inspections in an effort to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species. Many boat launches however, including those operated by the New York State Department of Conservation (DEC), remain largely un-staffed, or inadequately equipped, and often rely on poorly paid student labor. Most DEC boat launches in the Adirondacks remain open when stewards are not present. » Continue Reading.
Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced that New York State is expanding its partnership with Paul Smith College’s Adirondack Watershed Institute Stewardship Program to help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS) throughout the Adirondack’s waterways through the strategic placement of boat stewards and decontamination stations.
With more than 2,300 lakes and ponds, 1,500 miles of rivers, and 30,000 miles of brooks and streams, the Adirondack region is particularly vulnerable to the introduction of AIS. Once established, AIS such as zebra mussels and Eurasian water milfoil can spread rapidly through connecting waterways or by “hitchhiking” on the propellers, trailers, rudders, and motors of recreational boaters’ and anglers’ vessels. » Continue Reading.
The Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP) is offering a series of free training sessions to help protect Adirondack woods and waters from the harmful impacts of invasive species this summer. These workshops are open to the public.
Participants can learn to identify, survey for and manage invasive species currently threatening the Adirondack region, such as Japanese knotweed and Eurasian watermilfoil, as well as those that pose significant risk to the region, but have not yet arrived, such as hydrilla and mile-a-minute weed. » Continue Reading.
For years, biologists have been working to improve conditions for the native fish in Lake Champlain. Among other things, they have removed old dams to help spawning salmon migrate up rivers and have reduced the population of sea lampreys that prey on salmon and lake trout.
Now scientists are trying to fully understand how salmon are impacted by alewives, an invasive species that has become a main source of food for salmon, a keystone predator that eats smaller fish.
Alewives were first discovered in Lake Champlain’s Missisquoi Bay, in Vermont, in 2003. Since then, they have grown in number and replaced native rainbow smelt as the main forage fish for predators in the lake, and they are likely here to stay. » Continue Reading.
Spiny waterflea, an invasive zooplankton, continues to spread in the Adirondacks. First discovered in Great Sacandaga Lake in 2008, it has quickly spread into at least eight other lakes in the region.
Most recently, a new population was detected in Indian Lake in Hamilton County. Up until this detection, Indian Lake was considered to be the Adirondack’s largest invasive species free lake.
The discovery was reported to the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP) by a Paul Smith’s College Adirondack Watershed Institute (AWI) boat launch steward. An angler, who was fishing in a deeper section of the lake, collected the spiny waterflea on his fishing line. Because of its long spines, it can get easily caught on fishing line, especially on down-rigor lines, that are used to fish in deeper water. » Continue Reading.