Eurasian Watermilfoil - Dealing with the Threat

Our 2017 Campaign - We Need Your Help!

Our efforts to manage EWM over the past three years have proven challenging. Our initial EWM hand harvesting project in 2014 was deemed to be successful. However, a resurgence of EWM occurred in 2015. In 2016 new EWM plants were discovered in other locations of the lake. Eurasian watermilfoil has spread throughout the lake.

EWM is not our problem alone. EWM is considered to be one of the most widely distributed aquatic invasive plants; it has been confirmed in 47 US states, and the provinces of British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec.

For example, $30,000 is spent annually to mechanically cut EWM in Lake Wononscopomuc, Connecticut to allow recreational activities. Aquatic herbicide treatment cost $134,000 per year for a three year period to manage EWM in Long Lake, Michigan. Hand harvesting and benthic mats are used in the Chateugay Lakes, New York State, to control EWM at a cost of $70,000 per year.

During the years 2008 – 2010 EWM virtually took over the surface of Puslinch Lake which is located near Cambridge, Ontario. Channels had to be cut in the dense vegetation to permit boats to navigate across the lake. Different interventions were undertaken at significant costs to manage EWM over the past decade. Today some individual property shorelines are treated with aquatic herbicides at a cost of $450 per property. Bottom sediment is also being excavated to reduce the EWM vegetation and improve the overall health of the lake. Excavation equipment was purchased in 2013 at a cost of $350,000 and the annual cost to operate the dredging equipment is approximately $150,000.

Using the above EWM management examples, we should consider the potential expenses we could face if we do not mount an effective effort to combat EWM in Farlain Lake at this point of time. It is extremely important that each of us fully understands the threat that EWM poses and the ramifications of not taking action now to stop the spread of this invasive plant. It is easier and cheaper to limit the spread of EWM while the areas of infestation are relatively manageable.

Our lake needs our help!

The lake that we cherish and want to preserve for future generations is threatened by this invasive aquatic plant.

The FLCA EWM Steering Committee, a group of dedicated volunteers, is working with a great sense of purpose and urgency to manage EWM in our lake. They are highly concerned about the EWM threat. The committee has evaluated a range of potential control options to address the EWM infestation. Hand harvesting plants by divers is considered to be the most effective and environmentally friendly control method to address the current EWM issue in the lake. However, a more expedient method of harvesting EWM plants must be devised.

The Plan

The plan for 2017 is to develop a DASH (Diver Assisted Suction Harvesting) unit.

This specialized piece of equipment uses water pumps attached to a long suction hose that is used to transport EWM plants hand harvested by contracted commercial divers to collection bins on the surface. The DASH unit can significantly increase the productivity of the EWM harvesting by divers. The FLCA will also focus on community outreach; volunteers will conduct shoreline talks and go door-to-door educating landowners on how to look for, identify, and report EWM sightings. There are good (native) plants in our lake that contribute to a healthy ecosystem and should be left to grow and thrive.

Funds are Needed!

EWM Goal Attainment CartoonA SOL (Save Our Lake) capital campaign is underway with the goal of raising $80,000 to cover three years (2017 – 2019) of anticipated control and education expenses. Donations will be used solely for EWM related activities.

How to Donate

There are two ways to donate:

1) Donate by sending the SOL donation form and a cheque to the FLCA SOL Campaign, 31 Farlain Lake Road West, Tiny, ON L9M 0B9.

OR

2) You can make an E-transfer donation online. Information on E-transfers is provided on the donation form.

As the FLCA is not a registered charitable organization we are unable to issue donation receipts. We have partnered with the Township of Tiny which has the authority to issue tax receipts.  To limit the amount of administrative work the Township will only issue tax receipts for donations of $1000 or more. Donations will be received and processed by the FLCA. The Township will issue tax receipts at a later date to donors identified by the FLCA..

Other Fund-raising Efforts

Plans are also well under way for:

  • FLCA Aquatic Weedfest on July 2 with "Junktique", BBQ and lots of activities included.  See Coming Events for more details!
  • Farlain Lake Seasons Calendar for 2018 - On sale at Weedfest

Information on EWM and our management efforts is provided in the Q&A Eurasian Watermilfoil Fact Sheet available for download here.

For further information please submit an inquiry ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) or contact EWM Steering Committee coordinator Pete Andrews ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) directly.

Our Thanks

FLCA members and others who use the lake have been fortunate that beyond Eurasian watermilfoil, no other aquatic invasive species threaten the lake’s ecosystem.  Without the FLCA and its volunteers, many of the projects and events undertaken to manage EWM would not happen, and that would not bode well for our lake or the Farlain Lake community.  

It is in the best interests of all concerned that the ongoing EWM control strategy continues to be supported. For the AIS education/awareness initiatives to succeed, the support for the boat launch information kiosk,the Weed Watchersmonitoring program, and other initiatives is desired.

 The continued support of FLCA members and friends of Farlain Lake is needed and appreciated.