BREAKING: Spiny water flea set to infest Lake Champlain

Source: NYS DEC

State officials say a nasty invasive species has been identified in the Champlain Canal and the Glens Falls Feeder Canal.

According to the state Department of Environmental Conservation, the “spiny water flea” was identified in water samples collected June 12th at two locations by researchers working for SUNY Plattsburgh.

The invasive creature, originally found in Europe and Asia, is notorious for fouling fishing gear, but it also disrupts the natural food chain, often out-competing native fish and organisms.

A researcher with the University of Vermont told the Burlington Free Press that it now appears certain that the spiny water flea will make its way into Lake Champlain.

“Unless we do something to close the canal, it is inevitable,” said fisheries biologist Ellen Marsden.

Spiny water flea is only the latest foreign creature to make its way into North Country waters.

Anglers and boaters are urged to use washing stations to clean their gear and boats before moving between lakes and rivers.

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2 Comments on “BREAKING: Spiny water flea set to infest Lake Champlain”

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  1. Mary Thill says:

    “Biologists think zebra mussel, water chestnut, sea lamprey and other species that have been costly to contain reached Lake Champlain via the canal. It’s the path by which Asian clam will likely get there, as well as round goby, hydrilla and even Asian carp, connecting from the Great Lakes via the Erie Canal. The canal is the largest vector of nuisance aquatic organisms to Lake Champlain —and by extension of boating and fishing, a pathway to the wider Adirondacks and Vermont.”

    From Adirondack Life:

    Leadership is long overdue from New York State on the Champlain Canal. “Closing” the canal to invasives does not mean closing it to recreational boat traffic. The longer the canal remains open the more costly it will be.

  2. stillin says:

    Pay now or pay later. As with everything, it’s costly but waiting is even more costly. It’s great the water is being checked otherwise who would notice?

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