Information from Anchorage:
New article in the Alaska Dispatch:
New article in Anchorage Paper:
Dear Harding Lake Owners,
See link to article about the invasive weed Elodea that was in the Anchorage paper on Sunday. Lake owner Gary Wilken forwarded the link to the article. Gary is the Harding Lake Association representative on the interior Alaska Elodea task force. Please do all you can to avoid bringing this weed into interior Alaska waters and if you do notice the weed, contact me or Gary immediately and we will get the information to the right people. Early detection and action is key to avoiding the major problems pointed out in the article. Keva will also post this article on our Harding Lake Association website. Thank you. Happy New Year to all.
Jeff Cook, President
Harding Lake Association
More information on the Elodea:
The Elodea removal boat is just about up and running! Next week with SCUBA help
from Test the Waters Dive Shop, we will begin removing Elodea from the Chena
Slough using a 16' pontoon boat mounted with a suction dredge vegetation
harvester. The current plan is to run the system for about 3 weeks from the
uppermost portion of the infestation below Plack Road down to the Repp Road
During our summer work we will gain valuable information about how quickly we
will be able to clean-up the 10 mile long Elodea infestation in Chena Slough.
This week I will be calling on landowners along the Plack-Repp stretch of the
Slough to help with boat access, storage of boat equipment in the evenings, and
disposal of elodea plant material for compost. We appreciate any help that you
Many partners have helped this project come together. Chena Lakes Recreation
Area assembled the pontoon boat; Test the Waters has donated time to be SCUBA
support this summer; funding has come from the State Legislature, US Fish and
Wildlife Service, and the Alaska Sustainable Salmon Fund. We are still looking
for volunteers to help bag plant material and help ferry bags to and from
shore. Small rafts or canoes are also needed to help in the ferrying
effort. If you would like to donate your time over the next few weeks, we would
love to have you, but please realize that flexibility is KEY as we work out the
kinks in the system. Call or email me if you are interested in helping.
Other Elodea happenings:
Chena River Survey - The Tanana Valley Watershed Association is working
with the Fairbanks SWCD to survey for Elodea from the Moose Creek Dam
downstream to the river's confluence with the Tanana River. Survey work is
happening this week and next. So far, it appears that Elodea has spread
downstream from Chena Slough, but the infestations are relatively small and
sparse. This is good news because it means we have not yet lost the battle to
Elodea in the river!
Thank you for your continued support as we work to remove this aquatic invasive
plant from the Fairbanks area and prevent its spread to other waters in Alaska.
Feel free to call or email with questions or concerns.
Darcy Etcheverry & the Elodea Steering Committee
Natural Resources Specialist
Fairbanks Soil & Water Conservation District
590 University Ave, Suite 2
Fairbanks, AK 99709
479-1213 ext. 104
Elodea is a genus of aquatic plants often called the waterweeds. Elodea is a native to North America and is also widely used as aquarium vegetation. It lives in freshwater. The introduction of some species of Elodea into waterways in parts of Europe, Australia, Africa, Asia, and New Zealand has created a significant problem and it is now considered a noxious weed in these areas.
Submersed aquatic plants in the genus Elodea are not native to Alaska. Elodea survives freezing, and can spready by tiny fragments. These traits make it extremely invasive. Elodea has already been confirmed in and around Anchorage, Fairbanks, Cordova, and most recently, on the Kenai Peninsula in Stormy Lake. It's a popular aquarium plant in Alaska and can spread if released: waders, boats, trailers, floatplanes, and equipment can spread it further. Elodea will cause serious,irreversible harm to fish and aquatic habitats in Alaska if allowed to spread unchecked.
The American water weed lives entirely underwater with the exception of small white flowers which bloom at the surface and are attached to the plant by delicate stalks. It produces winter buds from the stem tips that overwinter on the lake bottom. It overwinters as an evergreen plant in mild climates. In the fall, leafy stalks will detach from the parent plant, float away, root, and start new plants. This is the American water weed's most important method of spreading, while seed production plays a relatively minor role.
Silty sediments and water rich in nutrients favor the growth of American water weed in nutrient-rich lakes. However, the plants will grow in a wide range of conditions, from very shallow to deep water, and in many sediment types. It can even continue to grow unrooted, as floating fragments. It is found throughout temperate North America, where it is one of the most common aquatic plants.