Tests to Continue for Invasive Species in Beaver Lake

The annual Beaver Lake Improvement Association (BLIA) meeting hosted Amy Smagula of the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Service, discussing aquatic invasive species.

At the Saturday morning, Aug. 16 meeting, Smagula said the Chinese Mystery Snail is now a resident in Beaver Lake. While it has been in New Hampshire for three decades it is deemed invasive. It is not causing any problems but has the potential to transfer health issues. Other than removing them by hand from the lake and dumping them into the trash, there isn’t a lot that can be done about them, she said.

Variable Milfoil is ano-ther matter. Floating fragments of the invasive have been found at Beaver Lake in different places, a couple of fragments in 2013 and four so far this summer.

Smagula said the in-depth survey of the lake bottom done last fall and another done this summer have turned up no evidence of any rooted Variable Milfoil, but she plans another in-depth survey this fall. Her guess is that a local boater with a routine of fishing at the lake is bringing in the fragments, attached in some fashion to his boat or motor, from a water body the boater visits that is infested with Variable Milfoil.

She gave a low probability to birds bringing it in, and to the idea that milfoil is coming from an upstream waterbody. However, she plans to check Adams Pond to be sure. Harantas Lake, the other upstream waterbody, is free of Variable Milfoil.

“If there was a rooted area of Variable Milfoil in Beaver Lake I would think we would have found it by now so I think it is likely the fragments are being brought in,” she said. “If I do find a rooted area I would immediately bring in a couple of divers to remove the plants, and if it was more than they could handle, I would bring a team of certified divers to remove the patch.”

She said she would send the BLIA her report after completing the lake survey in the early fall.

She also cautioned BLIA members to be on the lookout for fanwort, water chestnut, curly-leaf pondweed and the Asian clam, none of which have been detected in Beaver Lake so far but all of which are in other water bodies in the state. She provided the Volunteer Lake Assessment Program (VLAP) team with a test kit for Asian clam sampling and suggested they hit five or six different areas.

She also offered to provide a slide show of what is supposed to be in Beaver Lake and what is not. Arrangements will be made to get it uploaded to the BLIA Web page, www.beaver-lake.org.

Wilfred Chinemerem Nnaji, the University of Massachusetts at Lowell student who was the intern leading the Stream Team this summer, submitted his report at the meeting. After examining and testing the tributaries that empty into Beaver Lake, including Manter Brook, Jenny Dickey Brook, Cat’O Brook and Partridge Brook, the Stream Team findings indicated that the streams can be considered to be in fair to good health, although this year and last year none were judged to be in excellent health.

The 2014 Pinkerton Academy members of the Stream Team assisted Nnaji. Micaela Griffin of Hampstead was present to receive her certificate.

Griffin said she had enjoyed the Stream Team experience and had learned a lot about the environment and what it is in the streams that indicate the health of the water body.

The board of directors and the officers of BLIA – Rob Tompkins, president; Paula Frank, vice president; Anne-Marie Dudley, treasurer; and Ginny Legare, secretary, were re-elected for another year. A cookout followed the meeting.