Connecticut’s Taunton Lake is beset by a large population of Eurasian watermilfoil, according to The Newtown Bee. Experts believe the invasive weed made it there from boaters who transferred it from nearby lakes. These include Lake Zoar, Lake Lillinonah and Candlewood Lake.
According to the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, Taunton Lake had a high abundance of native plant Elodea nutalli in its waters in 2009. But one year later, Eurasian watermilfoil had claimed an area 9.2 acres in size and then continued its takeover, covering 37 acres of lake bed not long thereafter.
To combat the weeds, the town of Newtown, Conn. stocked the lake with 250 sterilized grass carp in late 2013 to see if they could eat it away. Now the Experiment Station is conducting a study of Taunton Lake’s watermilfoil to see if the carp have had any effect.
Much of the study will involve assessing the density and location of the aquatic invasive. Larger-scale studies would probably rely on satellites to take that measurement, but work on Taunton Lake will likely be done manually.
Research assistants have so far surveyed the lake on power boats. Their findings will be used to develop maps depicting current conditions in Taunton Lake and inform future lake management decisions.