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News stories tagged with "invasives"

Cover detail: 2012 State of the Lake Report from the Lake Champlain Basin Program
Cover detail: 2012 State of the Lake Report from the Lake Champlain Basin Program

State of the Lake: new report investigates water quality and health of Lake Champlain

Every few years the Lake Champlain Basin Program publishes a "state of the lake" report, detailing environmental quality in Lake Champlain. This year's report came out last week.

It says that while the overall health of the main lake is good, certain areas, like the Northeast arm and Missisquoi Bay, have higher levels of phosphorus pollution and algae blooms. Sarah Harris spoke with Bill Howland, director of the Basin Program, about the report.  Go to full article
Hydrilla. Photo: Purdue Extension
Hydrilla. Photo: Purdue Extension

NY boaters asked to help prevent spread of invasive water plant

Hydrilla is one of the most aggressive, invasive water plants. Its long, trailing stems form thick mats that prevent native water vegetation and fish from getting enough oxygen, light and nutrients.

Hydrilla was found at Cayuga Inlet, near Ithaca, last August. If unchecked it could spread Cayuga Lake, other Finger Lakes, as well as Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. Cornell Cooperative Extension is warning recreational boaters to take precautions and prevent the spread of the invasive plant. Sarah Harris has more.  Go to full article
NY State Sen. Betty Little. Photo: Mark Kurtz
NY State Sen. Betty Little. Photo: Mark Kurtz

Little pushes controls of invasive species

A bill introduced in the state Senate aims to make the possession and sale of invasive species illegal.

The legislation is sponsored by state Sen. Betty Little, a Republican from Queensbury. Little says invasives are a major threat to water bodies throughout the state. Her bill would strengthen current regulations and help prevent their spread. Chris Morris reports.  Go to full article
Should the shipping industry do more to stop invasives?  (Source:  USGS)
Should the shipping industry do more to stop invasives? (Source: USGS)

Top EPA official embraces NY's controversial ballast water rules

For the first time, a top official with the US Environmental Protection Agency has publicly embraced New York's tough new ballast water rules. Those regulations, scheduled to go into effect next year, are designed to stop invasions of non-native animals and plants, like zebra mussels and the spiny water flea.

Industry groups, members of congress and some Federal officials are pushing back hard, arguing that the regulations set standards that can't be met by existing technology. The want New York's rules scrapped. And they're lobbying the EPA to create national ballast water guidelines that are far less strict.

But as Brian Mann reports, the top EPA administrator in New York says new regulations should push the shipping industry to do more to help stop invasives.  Go to full article
Spiny water flea (Source: National Park Service)
Spiny water flea (Source: National Park Service)

Spiny water flea invades Adirondacks

Last week, biologists with New York's Conservation Department confirmed a new invasive organism in four southern Adirondack Lakes. The spiny water flea has been found in Sacandaga Lake near Speculator, Great Sacandaga lake, Peck Lake and Stewarts Bridge Reservoir. The tiny crustacean is already competing with native organisms and fish in Lake Ontario.

Brian Mann talked about the continuing wave of new invasive organisms with Hilary Smith. Smith is head of the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program based in Keene Valley.  Go to full article

Zebra mussels rebounding near Sackets Harbor

A thick cake of zebra mussels nearly shut down a water treatment plant in Sackets Harbor last week. The invasive species has been wreaking havoc in Lake Ontario for more than 20 years now. New regulations on the ocean-going freighters that first brought zebra mussels to these shores--and other measures--have led some to believe the invader has been contained. But, as Jonathan Brown reports, officials in Sackets Harbor now fear the species is rebounding.  Go to full article
Emily in the garden at Fiddlehead Creek Nursery (Source:  FC Nursery)
Emily in the garden at Fiddlehead Creek Nursery (Source: FC Nursery)

Going native in the garden means tracking down the right North Country plants

Gardeners are sort of like small-scale environmentalists. They create gorgeous little habitats that are often havens for birds and insects.

But gardeners can also cause a lot of problems, by using too many chemicals and by importing non-native plants.

There's a movement in the North Country to fill out lush and beautiful gardens with native plants.

Supporters say local alternatives are hardier -- more pest- and drought-resistant. Brian Mann visited a local plant sale in Keene and has our story.  Go to full article
Leek Moth
Leek Moth

Leek moth confirmed in Canton

A week ago, we heard from Cornell Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy that there was a new pest to watch for in North Country gardens. The Clinton and Essex counties extension office had confirmed the leek moth last year in Plattsburgh. It attacks the onion family -- garlic, leeks, onions and chives and their relatives.
A Canton gardener who'd heard the broadcast went straight to the Canton extension office, with suspicious little caterpillars they'd just found on their garlic. Sure enough...leek moths. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article

Preview: Upper Saranac Cookbook

Residents of Upper Saranac Lake are fighting an invasive water plant with a book about food. Their new cookbook, with hundreds of recipes, comes with an environmental message.

In 2004, lake residents began an intensive struggle against the destructive milfoil with an underwater dive program that harvests the invasive plant by hand. It's an on-going challenge. All the proceeds from The Upper Saranac Cookbook will be used to fight eurasian water milfoil on the lake.

Todd Moe spoke with lake association member Marsha Stanley about the new cookbook and the battle to control milfoil.  Go to full article

Is "rock snot" the next invasive species threat in the Adks?

Researchers say the invasive algae didymo, widely called "rock snot," is spreading throughout Vermont and the Lake Champlain basin. Found last week east of Burlington, the algae could make its way into Adirondack waterways, and once it establishes a presence, it's just about impossible to control or eradicate. Scientists say the algae forms large mats along the bottom of waterways and chokes out native plants. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article

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