Events Calendar

Invasive Plant (Eurasian Water-Milfoil) Information Booth
Saturday 05 September 2020 - 09:00am - Saturday 05 September 2020 01:00pm
The New Brunswick Invasive Species Council and the Belleisle Watershed Coalition would like to draw the public's attention to news that the invasive plant Eurasian Water-Milfoil has been observed in Belleisle Bay for the first time.

Known as the 'zombie plant', residents and users of the bay should be concerned as it has the potential to drastically change the characteristics of the bay by growing into dense patches that make it unsuitable for swimming, fishing, boating and paddling.

The plant was observed at the mouth of the Bay, and because it spreads through fragmentation, there is significant risk that the extensive boat traffic through that area will spread it further into the bay as pieces break off and get stuck to the motors and hulls of boats.

We will be hosting an information booth this Saturday, September 5th from 9am-1pm at the Bates Landing Market to provide information to residents and boaters. We are available for information requests or engagements in both languages.

Eurasian Water Milfoil

Media Contact
Kristin Elton, Director
New Brunswick Invasive Species Council
(506) 262-6247
Melissa Rafuse, Project Manager
Belleisle Watershed Coalition
(902) 691-3162

[Kingston, NB]- The New Brunswick Invasive Species Council and the Belleisle Watershed Coalition are asking boaters, anglers, and cottage owners to be on the look-out for Eurasian Water-Milfoil in Belleisle Bay after Dr. Meghann Bruce’s Research Team at the Canadian Rivers Institute observed the first known location of the highly invasive aquatic plant in the area.
The plants were observed at the mouth of the bay by Kingston Creek. “Not only the presence of the plants, but their location is concerning,” says Kristin Elton, Director for the NBISC. “The plant spreads by fragmentation and given how many boats come and go through that area, it is highly likely that pieces have been broken off and transported on propellers, hulls, etc. further into the bay itself where it will create new colonies.”
The research team had surveyed the same area in 2018 and did not find the invader, but given how quickly it has spread throughout other parts of the Saint John River, it is not surprising.
The Belleisle Watershed Coalition has been surveying publicly-accessible areas of the bay for EWM throughout the summer, and while they haven’t found any to date, most of the shoreline is privately owned. “Waterfront property owners hold the key to us tracking and preventing the spread of Eurasian Water Milfoil. If you think you have seen this plant in your waters, contact” says Melissa Rafuse, Project Manager at the Belleisle Watershed Coalition.
The good news, says Elton, is that by identifying this new colony relatively early, measures can be taken to stop further spread into the bay. “Boaters need to avoid areas where the plant is growing (if possible) to limit the plants’ fragmentation into even more plants, and if you arrive back at your dock and notice plant material on your boat do NOT throw it back into the water; dispose of it in the trash on land instead.”
Eurasian water-milfoil has the potential to grow into thick, dense mats where it clogs waterways, chokes out other plant species, alters fish habitat, and ruins beaches. “It grows so dense in some areas that it can become very difficult to boat, swim, fish or kayak in these places.” says Rafuse.

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