Water Soldier First Public Notice and Open House 2017

The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF), Peterborough District, is inviting public comment on the proposed control of the invasive aquatic plant water soldier (Stratiotes aloides) in the Trent River. Comments must be received within the comment period, which expires on September 25, 2017. Please see Water Soldier Public First Public Notice below for more details.

 

The OFAH will be hosting Public Open Houses to discuss details of monitoring and proposed control efforts, which the public is invited to attend at:

Wednesday September 6, 2017
Campbellford Resource Centre
65 Bridge Street, Campbellford
Open House: 3pm – 7pm

Thursday September 7, 2017
Quinte West Public Library
7 Creswell Drive, Trenton
Open House: 3pm – 6pm

An inter-agency working group on water soldier was formed in 2008 to help coordinate research, monitoring, control and prevention strategies. Agency groups include: Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters, Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, Trent University, Lower Trent Conservation, United States Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Parks Canada and Ontario Invasive Plant Council.

September 2015, Pre Herbicide Treatment

July 2016, Post Herbicide Treatment

2017 Monitoring

May-June: Reconnaissance was completed from below Lock 14 in Campbellford to Frankford, lock 6, wherein the presence/absence and abundance of water soldier was recorded. Reconnaissance was also conducted on the Bay of Quinte where over 25 kilometers of prime habitat was evaluated and no water soldier was detected.

July-August: Monitoring of Percy Reach, Crowe Bay, and Lake Seymour was conducted. A 50 meter by 50 meter grid was overlaid on the three waterbodies and at each point intercept, the presence/absence and abundance of water soldier was recorded. There were a few new small isolated populations found in the back channel of Wilson Island through this monitoring.

August: The annual Water Soldier Watch Day was held on Percy Reach on August 11th. 28 volunteers assisted with searching for water soldier over the 40 kilometres surveyed. Two new water soldier populations were found and added to the extent and distribution map to be treated in October.

September: The annual Water Soldier Open House was hosted in Campbellford on September 6, 2017. The event welcomed 58 members of the public to learn about the 2017 monitoring season, management plans, and the control options for the fall. At the open house, members of the public were invited to sign up for a workshop to be hosted in the winter to inform them about the proper removal of water soldier adjacent to their property with landowner kits that will be made available in the spring of 2018.

A second open house was held in Trenton on September 7, 2017 to inform residents downstream of the water soldier populations and how to identify the plant and the steps they can take to report any sightings.

October:  In October of 2017, the water soldier herbicide treatment was completed by SOLitude Lake Management using Reward (Diquat Dibromide). There were approximately 250 hectares treated in Lake Seymour, 9 hectares treated in Crowe Bay, 8 hectares treated in Percy Reach, and 5 hectares treated near Wilson Island over the course of three days. The size of the treatment areas have been buffered to ensure adequate coverage of the water soldier with the herbicide.

Shade Cloth Enclosures

Shade Cloth Enclosures: After the success of the pilot control project in 2016, the shade cloth enclosures were planned to be implemented in the 2017 season. Unfortunately, due to the significant amount of rain fall this year, the water conditions were unsuitable for the implementation of the shade cloth enclosures. They will be planned for installation in the 2018 season.

For any questions and concerns relating to this project, please call the Invading Species Hotline at 1-800-563-7711.  Sightings of water soldier can be reported to the Invading Species Hotline or entered online at www.eddmaps.org/ontario.