August 1, 2022
The Lake George Association is calling on boating enthusiasts up and down the Lake to come together on a dedicated weekend in August to inspect more than 100 locations for aquatic invasive species.
The LGA will host its inaugural lake-wide Aquatic Invasive Species Monitoring Weekend August 19-21 and is looking for volunteers with motorboats, kayaks, or canoes to survey the Lake for non-native plants such as Eurasian watermilfoil and hydrilla, as well as non-native mussels, snails and fish.
Left unchecked, invasive species can degrade the Lake’s water quality, impede recreational activities, and outcompete native plants and animals, impacting property values and the region’s Lake-based tourism economy.
“This is part of the LGA’s multi-faceted initiative to engage people who live near, or otherwise enjoy, the Lake to become Lake Protectors and play a direct role in sustaining water quality protection,” said LGA President Eric Siy. “Everyone has a role to play in keeping our Lake clear and clean.”
“Who better to protect the Lake than the people who live on its shores or spend time on the water?” said LGA Manager of Water Quality Research Brea Arvidson, who is organizing the effort. “Whether you’re already planning to be boating that weekend, or looking for an excuse to get out there, this is a great opportunity to enjoy the Lake and protect it at the same time.”
Interested boaters can register and use an interactive map to to choose the specific area of the Lake they would like to monitor from among the more than 100 locations. These locations are available on a first-come, first-served basis, so boaters are encouraged to sign up for their favorite area as soon as possible.
Monitoring can be done from a boat and while swimming, and participants will be asked to document their findings using the Survey123 app or a hard copy survey form provided by the LGA. It is estimated that most locations will take two to four hours to properly examine. Monitoring can take place any time on Friday, Saturday or Sunday, or across the entire weekend.
No invasive species identification experience is necessary to participate in the monitoring, and the LGA is encouraging families and small groups to team up for a fun-filled, educational and meaningful Lake-protection experience. For those interested, LGA staff will host an in-person training session on Friday, August 5, from 10:30-noon at the LGA office, 2199 Route 9, Lake George. Anyone unable to attend will be provided with written monitoring instructions.
Mr. Siy and Ms. Arvidson note that Lake George is home to one of the strongest aquatic invasive species prevention programs in the country, with trailered boats entering the Lake required to undergo inspections prior to launch. The new weekend monitoring program was developed to help identify any invasive species that may have escaped detection during boat inspection or have otherwise gone undetected in the water.
Lake George is currently infested with six known aquatic invasive species: two aquatic plants, Eurasian watermilfoil and curly-leaf pondweed; three mollusks: Zebra mussel, Asian clam, and Chinese mystery snail; and one crustacean, Spiny water flea.
Anyone with questions about the LGA’s Aquatic Invasive Species Monitoring Weekend is asked to email Brea Arvidson at [email protected] or Emily Boucher at [email protected].