Solving a Major Eurasian Water Milfoil Infestation—Naturally

Posted Friday, May 29, 2015 | Comments (0)

CASE STUDY:
Our Most Remarkable Eurasian Water Milfoil Success Story to Date

The Challenge

Pickerel Lake is a shallow 140-acre lake in Southwest Michigan. With a maximum depth of only 10 feet, the lake was particularly susceptible to invasive Eurasian Water Milfoil. In 2012, over 85% of the lake was consumed by the thick growth, with milfoil topped all the way to the surface on 70% of the entire lake. The infestation was so heavy that hundreds of frogs were living on top of the weeds with no fear of predation from bass or other game fish.

While the obvious answer was a whole-lake chemical treatment, residents were justifiably concerned about the impact of extensive chemicals on the lake ecosystem. Hoping for a more natural approach, the Pickerel Lake Association turned for help to AerationTech and our partner company, Lake Savers.

The Solution

For starters, in October 2012, we designed and installed an Bottom Aeration System consisting of one compressor and 24 diffuser heads. The goal: to fully oxygenate both the water column and the sediment, to reduce the nutrients fueling the explosive growth. We also dosed the lake heavily with beneficial bacteria to accelerate sediment-nutrient reduction.

The system was designed for maximum efficiency, while ensuring that the noise from the compressor didn’t disturb the peaceful lake setting.

The Results

The before/after video on Pickerel Lake says it all. We took what was an unusable lake in 2012, and delivered a 40-50% reduction in Eurasian Water Milfoil in 2013—with a 90% reduction in topped-out growth. 2014, our second season, was even better: a 90% reduction in milfoil and no topped-out growth at all. Pickerel Lake is quite simply our most remarkable success story to date of reducing Eurasian Water Milfoil through natural methods.

The Feedback

The residents around Pickerel Lake are thrilled to have their lake back and are enjoying tubing, skiing and fishing—activities all but impossible prior to our work on the lake.

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What’s Your Water-Body Challenge?

Are you struggling with weed and algae problems on your lake, but wary of harmful chemicals? We can solve your lake problems—naturally!

Contact us at (269) 383-3400 or info@aerationtech.com for expert guidance on selecting the right technology to restore your water body.