Milfoil was first identified in 1999, analyzed and verified it was variable milfoil in 2003, hand pulled until we developed the first suction dredge (HIPPO-short for hydraulic invasive plant processing operation) in 2004 and second in 2006. The HIPPO’s need constant attention and upgrades due to it being a work boat. The suction harvest program has continued and will continue so that managing the beds we will keep the cycle of the lake balanced and usable for all species. We hope to continue to beat down the milfoil beds so our operation can convert all areas from weekly, to semi- weekly, to monthly re-grooming. We need to always be on guard, keep assessing existing beds and look for other areas that the milfoil may have taken hold.
The boat ramp activity has increased day tripper usage and there are several fishing tournaments on the lake. It will always be a challenge when boats from infested lakes visit and it is important to make sure the variable milfoil from our lake is not transferred. It is important to have the Courtesy Boat Inspection program to educate those who want to use the lake of the impacts of milfoil.
It is important to become familiar with your shoreline and report any suspicious plant. We respond to requests to come and identify if the plant in your area is native or invasive. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 207.809.4706 to report suspicious plants. There are classes that you can take to know the difference and the importance of keeping native vegetation to discourage the invasive from taking over your area. Visit vlmpme.org for more information. It is also important to know what is fueling the growth of invasive and native vegetation. Good vegetative buffering, eliminating fertilizers around the lake, discouraging sand that contains phosphorous from being used on the beaches and erosion control measures are ways each of us can lessen the impact and growth of variable milfoil.
Please review the following chart to measure our accomplishments, which has maintained property values and keep our lake usable.