Pretty Purple Flowers!!
Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) an extremely invasive plant, has started appearing around the shores of Schroon Lake and Paradox. The plants spread extremely rapidly, choking out native plants and creating a monoculture with diminished value for wildlife. Although the flowers look lovely they have millions of seeds which spread easily and once they take root they are very hard to dislodge.
Our volunteers Don and Ellie Searles spent the summer of 2007 mapping purple loosestrife in Schroon Lake and Paradox. In 2008 they organized projects at Mountainside Christian Academy and Schroon Lake Central School in which children raised garelucella beetles to release at sites in the Schroon Lake area. These beetles eat only purple loosestrife and the project has proved very successful with more beetles introduced each year. Although many plants have been removed by Don and Ellie during the process of their work, we need the help of everyone who can join us in our fight against this invasive plant. During the summer of 2009 Ryan Carpenter, a high school student from Guilderland, assisted the Searles with 20 hours of volunteer community service for his college entrance requirement. He dug up over 2,500 purple loosestrife plants at various locations through the Schroon Lake area.
For more information on what you can do, please ask us to send you a copy of the brochure, "Purple Loosestrife, What You Should Know, What You Can Do." This brochure shows how to identify the plant, and how to remove it and dispose of the plant material safely.
We need young people like Ryan who can do the heavy work of digging up roots! We are happy to train volunteers to identify and harvest purple loosestrife during the summer in order to curb the spread of this plant. Join us for a day by the lake!
Curly Leaf Pondweed
A relatively small-scale curly-leaf pondweed infestation was discovered in Schroon Lake in June of 2003 in the navigation channel of the marina. To date, it is the only documented sighting of this species in the lake, and thus far it has been relatively easy to control it.
Another aggressive invader is zebra mussels. As far as we know at this time there are no zebra mussels in Schroon Lake. They can be imported as larvae in bilge water from boats which have been used in other lakes with zebra mussel infestations. Unfortunately these are microscopic organisms which cannot be seen. The best defense is not to pump bilge water acquired in other lakes into our lake.
Money and Volunteers
We incur ongoing costs in conjunction with the Lake Management Master Plan. In our first year we had the costs of mailing questionnaires to residents of the Schroon Lake watershed. This year we will be involved in the actual production and distribution of the Lake Management Plan itself. It will be a very comprehensive (and weighty!) volume indeed. We always need volunteers to help with our mailings and, of course, funds for printing and mailing.
We appreciate your donations which are tax deductible to the full extent of the law.
Beware of Look-Alikes!
For photographs of these invasives and some look alikes go to our Photo Galleries and look at "Invasives" In one of these photos you will see EWM (Eurasian Watermilfoil) on the left hand side, while our native Bladderwort plant is shown on the right.
This is one of the many reasons we ask that our volunteers who help us to rid the lake and its watershed area of invasive plants be trained specifically for that purpose!