Paddlers and other volunteers sought

Lewis Creek Association will be continuing its work with volunteers to tackle several non-native invasive plant removal projects in the Charlotte’s Town Farm Bay and Shelburne’s LaPlatte River areas. With this year’s expanded efforts, the association is looking for additional volunteers to help with three specific projects.

The first project is European Frogbit removal. Frogbit is a plant that grows on the surface of the water in both Town Farm Bay and Shelburne Bay. It is easily removed by kayak or canoe and raking plants from the surface of the water into a basket on the boat. The plants are then discarded to dry out away from the water.

Volunteers for this task need to be physically fit to get in and out of a boat, paddle, and use their upper body to rake in plants and lift them into a basket. A commitment of one or two picking dates in June, and possibly again in July is requested. Each date is approximately two to three hours of picking and volunteers may commit to as many dates as they choose. A coordinator will be on hand to give instructions.

A Flowering Rush study is the second project. Lewis Creek Association was awarded a grant to study the best methods for removing Flowering Rush in the Town Farm Bay area. This project ties in with the Frogbit project, as those volunteers, in addition to Frogbit picking, can paddle to the treatment plot area and perform some basic cutting of the Flowering Rush plants to limit regeneration.

The third project is Yellow Iris removal, which requires mechanical treatment along Lewis Creek in North Ferrisburgh. A more strenuous and physical type of field work, it will likely involve eight volunteers for five-hour days in June. Volunteers will walk along shorelines, which may be muddy or rocky, and do physical work removing plants. Tentative date for this project is June 8, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Project organizers promise a fun time. While paddling or walking in these beautiful areas, volunteers will also know they are doing something beneficial for the environment.

For more information or to sign up, contact program coordinator Kate Kelly at lewiscreekorg@gmail.com or 488-5203.

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