Could be two kinds of invasive milfoil in Norwood Lake
Friday, July 12, 2013 - 2:38 pm

The first sign of a potential rooted invasive plant was a species of milfoil found growing in the locations shown in red on this map.

NORWOOD -- The consulting company that inspected Norwood Lake for Eurasian watermilfoil says it found a little of the potentially destructive invasive plant but suspects there are actually two kinds of invasive milfoil present.

The Norwood Lake Association hired Aquatic Invasive Management, LLC to inspect the lake, which was done July 1 with a team of two divers and one surface tender.

They inspected key areas of the lake bottom and found and harvested some invasive plant growth.

Some Eurasian milfoil fragments were found caught on the floating rope before the dam, and were removed, along with other floating fragments.

Wherever fragments were found, the crew conducted an exhaustive search of nearby areas to try to find any plants that may have produced such fragments.

What they found has nearly identical characteristics to variable-leaf milfoil, which can also be a threatening or invasive plant, according to the AIM report.

Samples of the plant were collected and delivered to the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP), but its exact identity could not be determined without flowers or fruit that would be produced later in the growing season. The experts will seek out those out later.

The variable-leaf milfoil is also considered a destructive invasive plant, but the main concern is the Eurasian variety, which has proved to be fast-growing, taking over bottoms of water bodies, choking out native plant life.

All of the Eurasian milfoil the team found was hand-harvested, but they said they thought it is possible there are hidden pockets of growth elsewhere.

A lake volunteer or an AIM employee will collect additional samples of the unidentified milfoil once it is producing fruits and flowers, likely in August.

If the plant is identified as variable leaf milfoil, AIM says it can submit a harvesting proposal complete with costs.

They recommend that lake volunteers should be trained on plant identification and should make a point of keeping an eye out for any rooted plants, especially in the middle sections of the lake.

In 2014, AIM said, they should return for another one-day harvest/inspection to ensure that Eurasian milfoil does not achieve a firm foothold anywhere on the lake.