Feasibility Study to Eradicate Aquatic Invasive/Nuisance Species in
Steering Committee Start-up
Meeting for Upper and
September 16, 2009
6:30 – 8:30 PM
Present: Name Affiliation E-mail_________________________
Chic Voorhis NP&V email@example.com
Sara DaSilva NP&V firstname.lastname@example.org
Anthony Graves Town of
George Costa Trout Unlimited – Art Flick Chapter email@example.com
Marty VanLith Brookhaven Open Space Council VanLith@optonline.net
Connie Kepert Brookhaven Town Council Ckepert@brookhaven.org
Robert Kessler Coalition to Save the Yaphank Lakes firstname.lastname@example.org
Camilo Salazar SC DEE email@example.com
Kathy Schwager The Nature Conservancy firstname.lastname@example.org
Chart Guthrie NYSDEC email@example.com
Peggy Judd Coalition to Save the Yaphank Lakes firstname.lastname@example.org
Bob Judd Coalition to Save the Yaphank Lakes email@example.com
Gail Underwood Coalition to Save the Yaphank Lakes firstname.lastname@example.org
Sharon Wiesmann Yaphank /Upper Lake Resident email@example.com
Joseph Capozzeli Yaphank /Upper
Samantha Homan Vigliotta NYS Assemblyman Marc Alessi firstname.lastname@example.org
Elizabeth Kennedy Assembly Woman Eddington Kennede@assembly.state.ny.us
Fran Hurley Yaphank Tax & Civic Assoc. email@example.com
Timothy Rothang Legislator Browning Timothy.firstname.lastname@example.org
Adrienne Esposito Citizens Campaign for the Environment email@example.com
Tara Bono Citizens Campaign for the Environment firstname.lastname@example.org
purpose of this meeting is to discuss with the steering committee for the
Introduction – Camilo Salazar (SCDEE) - welcome and introduction of consultant to the group.
Presentation of Timeline and Approach– Chic Voorhis and Sara da Silva, NP&V
The presentation covered the following topics:
Existing data sources to be compiled and reviewed by NP&V/SoMAS for inclusion in draft/final report:
a. 2007 depth/sediment data from A. Graves (Town);
b. Coalition’s available wq data (collected in conjunction with Tim Green of Brookhaven National Lab, Town, and Boy Scout Troop 433);
c. Suffolk County DHS’s Oct/Dec’08 wq data at Upper Lake Spillway
d. 2005-2006 Carmans River wq report from SUNY grad student (George Costa will provide contact info)
Proposed data from Consultant Team:
· SoMAS to do comprehensive water quality sampling - max of 4 sampling events per year at 3 stations per lake; one cool weather sampling and 3 warm weather samplings) to enable assessment of fluxes in water chemistry and biological components (including potential cyanotoxins) between warm and cold weather. Parameters to be tested include DO, temperature (surface & bottom), pH, turbidity, water clarity, dissolved nutrients, bottom sediment substrate and organic content, and parameters for detection of potential cyanotoxins (e.g. chlorophyll, phycocyanin, phytoplankton assemblage, cyanotoxin extraction). Will be started this September.
Existing data sources to be compiled and reviewed by NP&V/BLaing for inclusion in draft/final report:
a. 2007 depth/sediment data from A. Graves (Town);
b. 2008 stormdrains into lakes (Coalition)
c. 2007 Aquatic Invasive Species Maps (Town)
d. 2006 Aquatic Plant Inventories (DEC)
e. Sensitive Species & Habitats in vicinity (NY Natural Heritage Program; USFWS)
i. 2008 bathymetry data (PWG Engineering)
ii. 2007 Dam Inspection Report (PWG Engineering)
Proposed data from Consultant Team:
· BLaing/NPV to conduct shoreline and cross-lake surveys and NPV to compile all available info into GIS database to produce following mapped information
o Updated macrophyte map (including Phragmites along shoreline)/living resources
§ Phragmites not previously considered a target species, but all agree would be useful to incorporate for consideration in management options/impacts
o visible pollutant sources map (Coalition’s data amended if necessary)
o Bulkheads/hardened shorelines/dams/spillway locations
o Fill in data gaps in bathymetry information.
Existing data sources to be compiled and reviewed by NP&V/BLaing/Orson for inclusion in draft/final report:
a. Tax maps for ownership info
b. Legal designations
c. Review existing management plans for species of interest (Cabomba, Myriophylum, Phragmites)
i. Harvester recently used on Lily Lake – tested last fall, but primarily April through September (not yet used on Willow Lake)… Anthony Graves gave presentation on this at end of power point and extensive discussion about success & funding issues ensued (see below).
d. Literature review of available plans and nuisance plant alternatives
Chart Guthrie suggested reading “Diet for a
mechanical harvesting has been implemented in
b. Team will build on existing information, work with stakeholders, equally assess all options and work towards consensus.
c. NPV/BLaing/Gobler will use matrices to assess alternatives and analyze:
i. Direct/indirect impacts
ii. Maintenance effort/cot of short & long-term controls
iii. Regulatory requirements/consideration
iv. Community support
a. Team will coordinate with County, Town, Carmans River Task Force, Local Councilperson, NYSDEC, Coalition & other stakeholders (e.g. residents).
b. Agreed that
c. Public education and collaboration will be used to understand history of the system (e.g. historical modification), identify modes of introduction, control inoculants, instill responsibility
d. Meeting breakdown:
i. Steering Committee (for each lake)
a) 1 start-up (September 2009 – this meeting)
b) 1 interim (January – March 2010)
c) 1 Progress (single meeting at end of Tasks 1&2) (January – April 2010)
d) 1 wrap-up (January – February 2011)
ii. Public Meetings (for each lake) – County to publicize two weeks in advance
a) 1 initial to highlight existing conditions; discuss options (April – May 2010)
b) 1 interim to build consensus toward preferred alternative (July – August 2010)
c) 1 additional final (if necessary, to assist in selecting alternative) (Nov. – Dec. 2010)
Existing data sources to be compiled and reviewed by NP&V/N&P/BLaing/SoMAS/Orson:
a. SSER Barrier Inventory/Prioritization Project (NP&V, 2007)
Engineering/DPW Rehabilitation Reports (e.g.
2007 Dam Inspection Report for
c. Previous options (designed by C. Orvis at USFWS) considered & funded, but never proceeded
i. Chart Guthrie stated that bond act grants in place to fund fish passage implementation… just need contracts in place.
a) Fresh look with public meetings to gather input & build consensus
b) Partner with USFWS through formal DEC request (NPV will coordinate with Chart Guthrie). USFWS will revise previous preferred alternative if warranted
c) Additional conceptual alternatives to be designed/provided by N&P engineers/Dr. Orson
a. Public summary to be provided with final annual report and published on website
a. Will be up and running shortly
Public Comments/Questions –
Regarding Timeline & SEQRA (State Environmental Quality Review Act)
Regarding Invasives & Existing Management Plans
invasive restoration project on
2. Evaluation of
harvester was suggested before continuing with its use in Lower Lily or using
Regarding Water Quality Data
1. Audrey Kessler - Coalition’s wq data is collected every two weeks. Tim Green at Brookhaven National Lab (BNL) currently doing the testing w/the Coalition. Another WWTP company operator does once per month testing of nearby STPs and surface water (nitrogen, phophorus and dissolved oxygen?), and then reviews the Coalition’s data to make sure everyone is finding the same conditions.
Regarding Community Involvement
1. Esposito - any other community involvement would occur other than meetings? Yes, website will be up shortly to keep the community informed and allow public input.
2. Guthrie (DEC),
Esposito (Carmans River Task Force) and Peggy Judd (CSYL) - would like to be notified
and present for the
Anthony Graves Provided an Overview on Success of
the Harvester in
· 912 employee hours (Town Highway Department personnel) on harvester totaling $43,400 cost (32 employee hours spent just to launch the harvester).
· Harvester machine operated for 24 days, approximately 1 day per week (generally Mondays) from April to September, but also includes test days in Fall 2008 and a few days when run in a row.
· 83 tons of plant material were brought to the landfill.
· Machine is able to be adjusted down to 6’, but lake is not much deeper than 2’.
· The harvester was purchased by the Town from Peconic River Sportsman’s Club and is the only known harvester in the county. The Sportsman’s Club used the machine on a lake double the size and ran the machine almost constantly, but couldn’t keep up. DEC permit for Sonar chemical was obtained and used. [As per search of DEC database, 10-year DEC permit for cutting the weeds issued in 1998 (DEC #1-4799-00037/00003); In 2006, DEC issued a 1-year permit (#1-4799-00037/00017) to apply the aquatic pesticides SONAR PR and SONAR Q over a 5 acre plot of Donahue Pond to control invasive Fanwort].
Discussion on success of the harvester:
· Connie Kepert - Highway Dep’t has asked whether they can stop for the year. Community input revealed that the harvester kept the lake more clear early in the season, but as summer went on, it became hard to tell where the harvester was operating and not as successful.
· Previous quote received from a lake management company for $30K to clean up both lakes in one shot (no maintenance). Would this help?
· Questions posed: Was it worth it? Plant is starting to die back this time of year… should harvesting continue this season? Worth the financial cost? Should a lake management company be brought in to harvest both lakes once? Worthwhile to keep just a fishing lane or boating lane open? Did the harvesting enable residents to do any more boating?
iii. Citizens aren’t able to use their lake and fix is needed, but Town has limited resources.
iv. Kepert - Last year, $20K used to buy the machine from Peconic Sportsman’s Club. This year, located $40K in funds from a cell phone tower to operate the harvester. Not known where the other $3,400 came from. Additional funding being sought. Additional funding from another source being lined up, but would be used for long-term solution.
v. A. Kessler - money obtained from Caithness Fund to fix Upper Dam spillway and east walls.
Residents didn’t realize harvester was only funded
to run 1 day/wk, and assumed it would run for several days at a time.
1. worthwhile, but needs to be done more often. Hard work just to keep the spillway open. Large volume of material generated … spillway needs to be cleared daily. Many homeowners are already taking shifts to keep it open.
2. harvesting didn’t help their section of shoreline.
3. more fish activity in harvested areas
4. recommend hiring company with prior $30K quote to provide relief on both lakes this fall.
5. C. Trusnovic -
no pattern to mowing. Spillway was
constantly clogged. Improvement in areas harvested and the benefit lasted
several days. Harvesting should continue
through fall, and done in a set pattern (not random zig zags). A limited area where weeds can be
off-loaded. Permit required off-loading
into payloader, but Hwy Dep’t not likely to leave payloader for citizen
volunteer use. Another stockpile site
would be needed until Hwy can come haul away material.
viii. Guthrie - DEC would have a problem with stockpiling harvested plant material because it can be washed back into the water by rain, and can partially block the boat ramp. DEC is willing to work with the Coalition to ID a different off-loading site for stockpiling. Worthwhile for residents to draw a map of critical areas to be mowed, including side channels to homes.
Guthrie - continue harvester into fall. DEC stocking trout in mid-October and would
like to see the lake open for fishing. Cabomba dominating
xi. Kepert will meet with Highway Supervisor to look at the budget and see if additional funds available for fall harvesting. Will look into whether harvester drivers could be County employees for 1/3 of cost, or whether a program could be set up to train volunteers to also operate the harvester.
xii. Van Lith - volunteer labor worth exploring? C. Trusnovic - numerous truck drivers in Yaphank who would likely help. Unions and insurance may be prohibitive. Kepert and Trusnovic agreed worthwhile to explore. If Hwy Dep’t doesn’t have personnel, outside consultant should alternatively be explored.
- Next meeting will occur once some water quality assessment and base characterization information is available. Coordinate with Esposito to orchestrate.
- Esposito requested that the revised slides be sent to her for dissemination to Carmans River Task Force.
The meeting ended at 8:45 p.m.