SPREAD EAGLE CHAIN O'LAKES ASSOCIATION: Spread Eagle Chain of Lake Eurasian Watermilfoil Response


Spread Eagle Chain of Lakes Association will continue management activities in response to the discovery of Eurasian Water Milfoil in 2012. The project objectives include: 1) Investigate the extent of EWM (new colonies) in the Spread Eagle Chain in 2015-16; 2) Hand pull EWM discovered in field investigations; 3) Educate SECOLA volunteers to conduct EWM monitoring and containment in future; 4) Conduct Zebra Mussel (ZM) population monitoring throughout the chain (2015-2016); 5) Document the distribution of Yellow Iris. Project deliverables include: 1) Written description and mapping of EWM monitoring and hand pulling effort; 2) Results of ZM population densities; 3) Yellow Iris distribution; 4) Monitoring and containment Plan for EWM in the Spread Eagle Chain of Lakes; 5) Share the project results with local stakeholders; 6) Final report. Specific conditions for this Project: The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) will be provided electronic and hard copies of all data and or reports/plans generated as a result of this project.

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Aquatic Invasives Grant
Aquatic Invasives Early Detection and Response
Reports and Documents
On September 5, 2012, during Early Detection Monitoring, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) discovered Eurasian water-milfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum) in North Lake of the Spread Eagle Chain of Lakes (SECOL) in Florence County, Wisconsin. Zebra Mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) were found in North Lake on the same inspection. An Early Detection and Rapid Response Project was awarded from the WDNR Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Planning Grants program to the Spread Eagle Chain of Lakes Association (SECOLA) for response to the simultaneous discoveries of these two aquatic invasive species. This initial grant was used in 2014 and 2015. A subsequent grant was awarded to continue the monitoring efforts for EWM, zebra mussels and the yellow iris (2015 through 2016). The objectives of this more recent grant were (1) conduct monitoring on the SECOL to locate and document EWM colonies; hand-pull EWM from existing and new sites; (3) conduct zebra mussel population monitoring; (4) document the distribution of yellow iris on the SECOL, and (5) provide education content for the SECOLA on aquatic plants, aquatic plant management, zebra mussels, and AIS monitoring.
The yellow iris (Iris pseudacoris) is a perennial aquatic plant native to Europe, western Asia and North Africa. It was first introduced to North America in the 1800s as an ornamental plant. Over time, the plant has spread to many wetlands and proliferated to the detriment of native plants and animals. Yellow iris is present on numerous Wisconsin lake margins and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) has listed this species as “Restricted” which prevents its sale, transfer, transportation and intentional cultivation. Yellow iris can reduce habitat needed by fish and waterfowl (Thomas 1980).
The zebra mussel, an aquatic invasive species (AIS), was confirmed in North Lake in 2012. North Lake is part of a chain of eight lakes known as the Spread Eagle Chain of Lakes in Florence County, Wisconsin. Zebra mussels were first observed in the Great Lakes system in the mid-1980s and have spread throughout the Great Lakes and into inland streams, lakes, and reservoirs in the Midwest. There are several zebra mussel infested waters within a short drive time of North Lake and the Spread Eagle Chain of Lakes. Exhibit 1 shows zebra mussel distribution in the Menominee River watershed as of 2012 (since then a population has been discovered in Fortune Lakes in Iron County, Michigan). Zebra mussels can cause significant ecological impacts and economic costs.
Activities & Recommendations
Grant Awarded
Grant AIRR-189-16 awarded