TICONDEROGA-The Lake George Association has released a report with findings from the 2010 lake steward program.
"The Lake George Lake Steward Program is a critical part of protecting the water quality of Lake George and preventing the spread of invasive species between waterbodies by boaters throughout the Lake Champlain Basin and the Northeast," said Lynne Rosenthal, communications coordinator for the LGA. "While dozens of different aquatic invasive species reside nearby, only four are currently found in Lake George."
In 2010, lake stewards were posted at four launches around Lake George: - Norowal Marina, Mossy Point in Ticonderoga, Hague Town Beach and Rogers Rock in Hague. Lake stewards inspected a total of 2,538 boats at these sites, and educated boaters about the threats of Eurasian watermilfoil, zebra mussels, curly-leaf pondweed, and the lake's most recent invader, the Asian clam.
Thirty-six samples of Eurasian watermilfoil were removed during the season. Nine samples of curly-leaf pondweed were found, three samples of zebra mussels, and five of water chestnut, an invasive that is not currently found in Lake George.
In addition, the program collects data on the body of water most recently visited prior to Lake George within the past two weeks, and whether spread prevention steps were taken prior to launch.
In 2010, 65 boaters stated that the body of water they visited prior to Lake George was Lake Champlain, a lake with 49 documented invasive species. Thirty-three boaters had most recently visited the Hudson River, a waterbody with 91 invasives. Ninety-five percent of the boaters reported that they had taken spread prevention measures prior to their launch.
Stewards also inspected bait buckets and educated boaters about New York State's new baitfish and firewood regulations.
The program was originally conceived by the Invasive Species Task Force of the Lake George Watershed Coalition and is currently coordinated by the LGA.