Weather forces start of project until after Labor Day

Finding the aquatic invasive plant starry stonewort in an isolated area within Geneva Lake has made it necessary to aggressively remove this non-native plant before it gets into other areas of the lake, according to a press release from the Geneva Lake Environmental Agency.

After several months of putting together a hydraulic dredging program, finding contractors, locating a dewatering and disposal site, applying for needed permits and funding, things are coming together to initiate the dredging.

Officials with the GLEA said they had hoped to dredge the lagoon before Memorial Day but because of weather delays and timing, the dredging date is now set for after Labor Day.

The GLEA plans to dredge (hydraulic) about 2,000 cubic yards of sediment from the easterly lagoon and pump the dredged spoils across the common area (airstrip) to the sediment storage area at the southwest corner of the subdivision; this area is within the town-controlled Golf Drive right-of-way and a portion of Trinke Park north of Wildwood Drive.

The filtered water will return to Trinke Creek either within Trinke property or within the Lake Geneva Country Club property. The dredged spoils will dewater in geotextile bags for several months before being hauled offsite and capped at a Walworth County approved disposal site.

GLEA is obtaining additional bids for this project. The project will include two contractors – a dredging contractor and a site restoration contractor. The project will also include at least two chemical treatment applications within the lagoon during summer, if needed, to control the migration of the invasive species until the dredging.

The chemical treatment of starry stonewort is intended to kill the vegetative or growing part of the plant, but it does not kill the reproductive tiny star shaped bulbils that are found in the mud. Until the bottom is dredged, only care by boaters can prevent the transport of the bulbils from one area of the lake to another.

Because the dredging won’t take place till the fall, boaters are asked to stay out of Trinke Lagoon to reduce the spread of this invasive. Buoys will be places at several locations within the lagoon warning boaters of starry stonewort’s presence.

The GLEA is ask everyone to stay away from the buoys.

Boaters should also check their boats, bilges, bait buckets, live wells and anchors for starry stonewort or its reproductive bulbils. Clean all plants and bottom mud from your boat and anchors before moving to another location on the same lake or to a different lake.

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