**UPDATE: The Geneva Lake Environmental Agency (GLEA) has created a Go FundMe page to raise funding to hydraulically dredge the area where Starry stonewort is found, removing the plant and its reproductive portions (bulbils) found in the sediment. The fundraising goal is $150,000. Click here to donate now and share with your friends and neighbors! [**The cost of dredging an infested lagoon is five times higher than expected, so plans to begin the process has been postponed to Fall 2019, when officials hope to find lower costs.**]
We cannot afford to delay action. This video shows the drastic results of Starry stonewort infestation, as the species overtook Minnesota's Lake Koronis in just a couple years. This could very well be Geneva Lake if drastic action isn't taken to exterminate our colony of Starry Stonewort currently isolated in Trinke Estates Lagoon.
Starry stonewort, an aggressive invasive species of algae, has been detected in Geneva Lake, specifically Trinke Estates Lagoon. Geneva Lake Environmental Agency (GLEA) director Ted Peters has proposed methods to fight the destructive algae's spread, and he needs our help!
The species has been found in 7 lakes in the state, and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is working with impacted communities through education efforts and providing funding to help fight the species’ spread. They recently isolated a portion of Green Lake in Washington County, for example, and put herbicides to get rid of the algae.
The GLEA has proposed hydraulically dredging sediment from the Trinke Estates Lagoon to control the Starry stonewort population – but this alone would cost more than $120,000. The total cost of tackling this issue is more in the $500,000 range.
Starry stonewort poses a significant threat because its reproductive organs, referred to as “bulbils”, embed themselves in a water body’s sediment. There is no way to completely eradicate the species, but there are proven methods to control it. Arguably the most effective method is hydraulic dredging, which works by pulling up a mixture of sediment and water from the floor and then moving that mixture through a pipeline to another location. GLEA director Ted Peters has stated this is the ideal method to manage the problem.
The GLEA is appealing to the State of Wisconsin for grants and funding assistance for a multi-faceted abatement program and for the state and DNR to give Geneva Lake their full-fledged collaboration. All five municipalities around the lake are willing to help, but say they can't fully cover the hefty costs. That leaves it up to the community to spread awareness and save Geneva Lake from this ecological disaster.
Sign our letter in support of the GLEA's efforts to combat Starry stonewort in Geneva Lake! We will submit this letter to appropriate state agencies and other environmental organizations who can help stop the spread of this serious threat.
Please share this with your neighbors and all who care about the future of Geneva Lake. We also encourage you to share this post with your social networks!
To learn about more ways to get involved, please contact Geneva Lake Environmental Agency Director Ted Peters at 262-245-4532 or visit https://www.genevalakemanagement.com/.
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