Invasive Species Prevention

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Invasive Species Prevention
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Invasive Species Prevention Program
2005 Program Report
The Lake George Park was established, together with the Commission, by act of
the New York State Legislature in 1961 under Article 43 of the Environmental
Conservation Law. The Park consists of Lake George and its land drainage basin within
specific boundaries established under the law. The Lake George Park is wholly within
the Adirondack Park, and covers some 300 square miles, approximately 44 square miles
of which are lake surface. Approximately one half of the Lake George Park is public
ownership. The Lake George Park Commission is responsible to preserve, protect, and
enhance the natural scenic beauty of the lake and its surrounding countryside and regulate
the use of the lake and the area near or adjacent thereto for appropriate residential,
conservation, health, recreational and educational purposes.
One program that the Commission implements to fulfil the mission of the
Commission is the Invasive Species Prevention Program. This program is an integral
component to ensure Lake George will remain a thriving water-body. Invasive Species
can cause major ecological and economic damage to Lake George. The Commission is
committed to this program and is always pursuing ways to strengthen efforts and provide
resources to enhance this program.
The Lake George Park Commission has a specific regulation relating to this issue
prohibiting the launch of a vessel into Lake George without first inspecting it for invasive
species. Section 646-1.6 of the Lake George Park Commission Rules and Regulations
states:
“No person shall launch a vessel into or remove a vessel from the waters of the
park without inspecting the vessel and its trailer, if any, to ensure the detection of
marine growth, including macrophytes (weeds), or any other hull contamination,
and removing said growth and disposing of it so as to ensure that it is not
discharged into the waters of the park.”
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In 2005, the Commission expanded the Invasive Species Prevention Program as
well as continued two very important programs that have become valuable tools toward
the protection from and management of Invasive Species in Lake George. The
Commission is hopeful that the Invasive Species Prevention Program will continue to
grow and provide valuable resources and tools to combat Invasive Species.
During 2005, the Commission:
1)
Completed its 12th year managing Lake George’s Eurasian Watermilfoil
Management Program;
2)
Updated the Lake George Park Commission’s Eurasian Watermilfoil
Management Plan;
3)
Completed its 5th year implementing the Commission’s Volunteer Invasive
Species Participating Business Program by adding (9) new businesses;
4)
Allocated funding to develop and purchase new awareness/educational
material relating to Invasive Species;
5)
Hired two Marine Inspectors to help the Commission Marine Patrol detect
and remove Invasive Species prior to entering Lake George;
6)
Increased public awareness by releasing media advisories and newsletters
explaining the issues and precaution measures that the public can use to
protect Lake George from Invasive Species.
Below is a summary of each of these initiatives for 2005.
1) Eurasian Watermilfoil Management Program Results for 2005
The 2005 Program Report for Lake George Park Commission’s Eurasian
Watermilfoil Program was released in December. According to the program report, two
large Eurasian Watermilfoil (milfoil) beds that have existed for almost twenty years are
virtually gone and good progress was made elsewhere in the battle against milfoil.
7,073 milfoil plants were hand harvested in 2005 down from 9,387 plants in 2004
and 17,438 plants in 2003, according to the report. In all 115 or 77% of the 149 sites
where milfoil has been found in Lake George were clear of all milfoil at the conclusion of
the 2005 season. 72 sites were cleared and 43 sites remain clear from efforts in prior
years.
The total number of sites increased by one (1) during the report period. Site 149,
a small moderately dense area within a large dock slip was managed using benthic
barrier. Two additional sites were found after the plant management season. These small
but dense areas are priorities for 2006. Since 2002, all but one new site has been
identified by citizen referrals to the Commission.
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The Commission’s total cost for the program is estimated at $160,000 for 2005
with approximately $90,000 budgeted for labor and other contractual services. The
Commission received a program grant from the Fund for Lake George, Inc. of $10,000 in
2005 and utilized $7500 in funds from the Lake George Watershed Conference. The
Darrin Freshwater Institute provides in kind assistance and scientific support to the
project on an on-going basis. The Commission is grateful to these groups and the public
for their support and cooperation.
To review the full 2005 Eurasian Watermilfoil Management Program Report you
can obtain a copy from www.lgpc.state.ny.us or contact the Commission.
2) Updated Lake George Park Commission Management Plan:
In 2005, the Commission hired ENSR International, a consulting firm providing
environmental and energy development services, to update the Commission’s Eurasian
Watermilfoil Management Plan. A draft of the updated management plan was released
for public review and comments in October 2005. The Management Plan is currently in
draft form with anticipated adoption by the Park Commission sometime during 2006.
This management plan is intended to form the basis for future efforts and to find the
resources to finally eliminate milfoil from Lake George. A copy of the draft management
plan is located on www.lgpc.state.ny.us.
3) Invasive Species Prevention Participating Business Program:
In 2001, the Lake George Park Commission established a program called the
Invasive Species Prevention Participating Business Program. Approximately forty
volunteer businesses within the watershed formed an information and referral network
with the goal to educate the public on the importance of measures to protect the Lake
from invasive species. A primary focus is the need to inspect boats prior to launching
into Lake George. These businesses distribute educational materials to their customers
and provide them with assistance on what to look for and how to properly inspect boats
and other equipment.
At the end of Summer 2005, the Commission also sent letters to each participating
business at requesting completion of a “post-season” survey asking questions pertaining
to the program. The Commission received 23 responses out of 39 participating
businesses. 14 of the survey responses were from launch facilities.
Of the 2005 survey results, four (4) businesses that responded indicated that they
detected zebra mussels on boats prior to entering Lake George. Survey results indicated
that most boaters seem aware of the issues surrounding Invasive Species and eleven (11)
responded that they “strongly agree” boaters seemed supportive of this program. Nine
(9) responded that boaters “somewhat agree” to be supportive of this program and three
(3) had no response to the question. Some businesses provided recommendations to
enhance this program and the Commission will review and consider their input in 2006.
In 2005, the Commission initiated an effort to expand this important program and
enhance the awareness material provided to the businesses. During winter 2005, the
Commission sent letters to non-participating shoreline businesses asking for their
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support/inclusion in this program. The Commission received responses from nine (9)
interested businesses that will be included in this program beginning Spring 2006.
At the beginning of 2006 the Invasive Species Prevention Participating Business
Program has 48 businesses in the program. Participating businesses are below.
Participating Businesses
Lake George Steamboat Company
Hall’s Boat Corporation
Shoreline Marina
Dockside Landing Marina/Marine
Center
Boardwalk Restaurant and Marine
Dunhams Bay Sea Ray
Boats By George
Harris Bay Yacht Club
Castaway Marina
BBG on the Lake
Fisher’s Marina
All Waves Discount Marine
Sportline Power Products
Outdoorsman Sport Shop
Yankee Boating Center
Gilchrist Motel and Marina
Beckleys Boats
Bolton Landing Marina
Lake George Camping Equipment
F.R. Smith and Sons
Norowal Marina, Inc.
Chic’s Marina, Inc.
Performance Marine
Northern Lake George Yacht Club
King Boatworks
Lakeshore Garage
Tony’s Ticonderoga Sports Inc.
Sharkey’s Store
Town of Ticonderoga
Snug Harbor Marina, Inc.
Huletts Island View Marina
Lake George Club
Fish 307.com
The Sagamore
Ann’s Bait and Tackle
Scotty’s Motel
Bayview Marina
Sunshine Laundry/Do It Yourself Laundry
Hacker Boat Co NEW for 2006
Melody Manor Resort NEW for 2006
Chelka Lodge NEW for 2006
The Boathouse Restaurant NEW for 2006
Trout House Village Resort NEW for 2006
Sun Castle Resort NEW for 2006
Carey’s Lakeside Cottages NEW for 2006
Diamond Cove Cottages NEW for 2006
Alpine Village Resort NEW for 2006
4) Allocated funding to develop and purchase new awareness/educational material:
In December 2005 the Commission passed a resolution allocating funds to
develop and purchase new educational material in the forms of rack cards and posters.
Using this new material, the Commission will be able to significantly increase public
awareness of Aquatic Invasive Species, expand its Participating Business Program as
well as educate the public on precautionary measures to stop the introduction of new
Aquatic Invasive Species into Lake George. It is anticipated that the material will be
ready for public distribution in Spring 2006.
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5) Hired Two Marine Inspectors:
In 2005 the Commission hired two seasonal employees, under supervision of the
Commission’s Marine Patrol staff, to monitor launch activities at public launches,
educate boaters about aquatic invasive species as well as provide boat inspections at
public boat launches prior to launching in Lake George. According to preliminary
discussions with the Marine Inspectors, on several occasions the marine inspectors
intercepted invasive species on boats and equipment prior to entering or exiting Lake
George. The Commission anticipates receiving the Marine Inspectors’ formal report
during spring 2006. Pending that report, the Commission will review the effectiveness of
this program and whether or not to continue this program during the summer of 2006.
During 2005 the Commission was active in public outreach and awareness. The
Commission released various forms of information to the public and will continue to
strengthen this effort in 2006.
For more information on Commission’s Invasive Species Prevention Program please visit
www.lgpc.state.ny.us

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