Milfoil and Invasive Species Page

November 28, 2014
10:22 PM



Identify blue-green algae

Contact JPA Water Quality

Lakes Currently Infested in VT


The following are shots of Eurasian Milfoil

Eurasian

"Eurasian Milfoil has NOT invaded Joe's Pond"

Eurasian

Eurasian

"Eurasian watermilfoil stems can reach the surface in up to 20 feet of water"

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Eurasian Milfoil is a Problem in Vermont


The Joe's Pond Association monitors the pond for invasive species, and Eurasian Milfoil has NOT invaded Joe's Pond. The most recent biological survey, conducted in August, 2009, found no invasive species. The Association's inspection team, which is housed at the boating access area, is active throughout the summer. Also, the Association encourages users of the pond, members and nonmembers, to report suspicious plants. Pam Hebert is the JPA Director of Water Quality and Safety. Normally, when Pam sees a plant, she can determine whether it is an invasive species. If she can't, she will forward specimens to experts at the state of Vermont. Bring specimens you find to the boating access area or Pam can be reached at 684-3655.

Vinny on the job

The following species were found in Joe's Pond during the 2009 biological survey. These species are indigenous and are NOT nuisance species:
Big-leaf Pondweed;
Bladderwort;
Clasping Pondweed;
Coontail;
Fern-leaf Pondweed;
Muskgrass;
Northern Milfoil;
Quillwort;
Tapegrass;
Waterweed;
White Water Lily.

The following information was taken from The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources website:

Eurasian watermilfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum L.) is a non-native aquatic plant that currently infests a number of Vermont lakes, including the state's largest, Lakes Champlain, Memphremagog and Bomoseen (view map). This plant is known for its rapid growth and ability to spread, which can lead to significant problems within a lake. Commonly found in shallow bays and along the shoreline, milfoil forms dense beds that can seriously impair the recreational use of a lake, reduce the availability of fish spawning grounds, outcompete beneficial native plants, and otherwise alter a lake's natural environment.

The growth and spread of Eurasian watermilfoil is a threat to all our lakes and ponds. Once Eurasian watermilfoil has infested a lake there is no known way to eradicate it. Lake managers can only seek to control it by integrating the most effective, economically feasible, and environmentally sound methods available

Eurasian watermilfoil is not native to North America but originates from Europe, Asia and northern Africa. As an "introduced" species to this continent, Eurasian watermilfoil has no natural controls (insects, bacteria, fungi) to keep its growth in check. In North America it has the potential to completely infest lakes once introduced. Native types of watermilfoils rarely attain such extensive growth.

Eurasian watermilfoil stems can reach the surface in up to 20 feet of water, growing up from the lake bottom each year from a fibrous root system. Milfoil grows and spreads extremely quickly, forming dense surface mats. Unlike most native aquatic plants, which are usually associated with particular water qualities, Eurasian watermilfoil will grow readily in many types of lakes, as well as on almost any lake bottom type: silty, sandy, or rocky.

The presence of Eurasian watermilfoil often brings a change in the natural lake environment. Over time, it may outcompete or eliminate the more beneficial native aquatic plants, severely reducing natural plant diversity within a lake. Since its growth is typically dense, milfoil weed beds are poor spawning areas for fish and may lead to populations of stunted fish. Although many aquatic plants serve as valuable food sources for wildlife, waterfowl, fish, and insects, Eurasian watermilfoil is rarely used for food. Commonly found in shallow bays and in bands along the shoreline, dense surface mats of milfoil can also make fishing, boating and swimming virtually impossible.

Eurasian watermilfoil reproduces almost exclusively by the breaking off of fragments which can drift away, sink, develop roots, and grow into new plants. A fragment just a few inches long is capable of starting a new plant. This fragmentation occurs both naturally and as a result of human activity. Within a lake, wind and waves may break plants loose, allowing them to drift into new locations and root. Boating activity through dense milfoil beds also contributes to the fragmenting and spread of milfoil plants.

November 28, 2014
10:22 PM



Identify blue-green algae

Contact JPA Water Quality

Lakes Currently Infested in VT


The following are shots of Eurasian Milfoil

Eurasian

"Eurasian Milfoil has NOT invaded Joe's Pond"

Eurasian

Eurasian

"Eurasian watermilfoil stems can reach the surface in up to 20 feet of water"