Exotic Aquatic Plant Watch Survey and Free Training at Gratiot Lake Limnologist, Erick Elgin
July 25, 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM
Gratiot Lake Public Boat Access
For about 18 years GLC has participated in Michigan Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program (CLMP). Since 2006 Dorothy Jamison has been taking readings of lake transparency on average 14 times a year. Every one to two years a water sample from the lake is sent to the state lab to detect the amount of phosphorus present. Overall at Gratiot no major changes have been noted in this monitoring data over the years.
In 2005 and 2006 botanist Janet Marr undertook a comprehensive survey of aquatic vegetation at the lake. The survey revealed that Gratiot Lake was home to good array
of beneficial native aquatic plants. As a baseline that survey provides data for comparison in the future. Native aquatic plants provide food and habitat for a healthy community of animals in the lake, including a variety of fish, so the richness and variety of plant species found was a good health indicator for the lake. Janet even discovered one plant that is endangered in Michigan: Subularia aquatica, water awlwort. She didn’t find any aquatic exotic plant species, but recommended that the lake be monitored from time-to-time for any invasive plants before they become problematic.
Now CLMP is offering hands on Exotic Aquatic Plant Watch training so that those interested in lake monitoring to protect their lake can learn how to do just that. This program is targeting five plant species that pose the biggest threat to Michigan waters: Eurasian watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed, hydrilla, European frog-bit, and starry stonewort.
Because GLC has enrolled in Exotic Aquatic Plant Watch, Erick Elgin who is a water resource educator from the Michigan State University Extension will be coming to teach about and perform an invasive aquatic plant survey. He will provide information on how to identify these five plants and demonstrate a transect survey method by doing the initial survey near the Gratiot Lake public access.
If you are interested in helping with lake monitoring for exotic invasive plants and would like to see how it is done,
RSVP Bonnie at 906-337-5475
or email Director@GratiotLakeConservancy.org