So far, nine ‘saves’ of unwanted plants have been kept from infesting our lakes this summer.
Concord, N.H., August 29, 2023 – Thanks to the efforts of NH LAKES’ Lake Hosts, many of New Hampshire’s most popular and pristine lakes continue to be protected from the spread of invasive species this summer. The main way invasive species—plants like milfoil and animals like the Chinese mystery snail—spread from waterbody to waterbody is by hitching rides on boats that have not been properly cleaned, drained, and dried between waterbodies. Lake Hosts have helped boaters prevent eight invasive plant fragments from hitching a ride into our lakes this summer by teaching boaters to take the time to property clean off their boats.
Bernadette Cadorette, a second-year Lake Host and resident of Nubanusit Lake in Hancock, has made three aquatic invasive species saves this summer alone, successfully stopping both variable and Eurasian milfoil, two invasive plant species, from entering the pristine lake.
Vinnie Pierannunzi spotted some suspicious weeds trapped between the hull of a boat and trailer about to be launched into Laurel Lake in Fitzwilliam. “I had never seen milfoil before, but it looked suspicious. I’ve seen lots of weeds and vegetation in other lakes in New Hampshire, and I don’t want that happening at Laurel Lake,” Vinnie told NH LAKES. “I just got my boating license and love to fish, so clean lakes are important to me.”
Bernadette and Vinnie are just two of nearly 700 Lake Hosts throughout the state who serve as our lakes’ frontline of defense against the spread of aquatic invasive plants and animals.
Invasive species are organisms that thrive in an area where they do not evolve naturally and cause harm to the environment, economy, or people. Large areas of invasive plants in a lake make swimming and boating difficult and dangerous. They are expensive to control and nearly impossible to get rid of. They also reduce shoreline property values.
“It’s great to see a younger generation of Lake Hosts making some really key saves this summer,” mentioned Andrea LaMoreaux, NH LAKES President and Policy Advocate. “We have seen a gradual decline in participation in our Lake Host program for various reasons, leaving some of our lakes unguarded.”
In addition to these saves, Lake Hosts have also made critical saves at these other locations this summer: Eurasian water milfoil was stopped from entering Conway Lake in Conway; Variable milfoil was stopped from departing Lake Potanipo in Brookline; Eurasian water milfoil was stopped from entering Newfound Lake in Bristol; Variable milfoil was stopped from entering Pleasant Pond in Francestown; and Water chestnut seed from entering Lake Winnisquam in Laconia.
Since the Lake Host Program began in 2002, Lake Hosts have inspected nearly 1.5 million boats and made over 1,500 saves.
You can learn more about ways to help the Lake Host Program at nhlakes.org/lake-host. It’s a fun way to get outdoors, meet others in your community, and help protect lakes from aquatic invasive species.