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Ongoing Battle Against Aquatic Weeds Get Problematic
The ongoing battle against aquatic weeds is getting tougher as one of the most invasive species is developing an herbicide-resistant strain and ongoing drought changes the landscape of the lakes.

Some lakes use mechanical harvesters to cut weeds and haul them away. In Paddock Lake, Administrator Tim Popanda said, a two-man crew works on a mechanical plant harvester five days a week throughout the summer to try to keep weeds in check.

Popanda said when they began the annual harvest in May, the situation was already a bit out of control. “There wasn’t any snow cover on the lake last year, and the ice went out early. We really had spring arrive in March,” Popanda said. “So by the time we started harvesting, the weeds were just unbelieveable.”

He said the village hauled 280 truckloads — an estimated 2.2 million pounds of weeds — away to be composted.

Along with mechanical harvesting, many associations use herbicides to treat invasive weeds. In recent years, that too has become more challenging as Eurasian milfoil has adapted, hybridizing with native species and becoming resistant to chemical treatment.

 
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Wisconsin’s Efforts and Successes in Addressing AIS - Two online reports document progress made in 2011-12 in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive species in Wisconsin lakes, rivers, forests and wetlands. Invasive species such as the emerald ash borer, Eurasian watermilfoil and garlic mustard cost billions of dollars annually across the nation and threaten business sectors such as agriculture, tourism and forestry.


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