The Lake County Aquatic Plant Management Section manages invasive aquatic plants for all users of public water bodies in order to minimize flooding situations, restore navigation, and help maintain the natural integrity of these water bodies with respect to aquatic vegetation.
Hydrilla in Salt Springs, FL
Cooperative Aquatic Plant Management (Chapter 62C-54, FAC)
Lake County Aquatic Plant Management works with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to develop an annual work plan for aquatic plant management activities on public water bodies. Afterward, the County and FWC approve a contractual agreement for determination of funds to be allocated for these activities. All work performed under this contractual agreement is reimbursed at 100 percent to the County.
Major invasive exotic aquatic plants, including water hyacinths, water lettuce, and hydrilla, found on public bodies of water meeting eligibility criteria are given the highest priority for funding purposes. Some minor invasive exotic and native aquatic plants are included in the work plan on a special local need basis. An example would be the treatment of cattails on Dead River around navigational signs.
Duckweed on a residential canal off Dead River
Minor invasive exotic and native aquatic plants found on residential canals less than 10 acres and are connected to those water bodies that meet the state eligibility requirements are considered for management purposes.
However, only those activities that provide navigable access or enhance the aquatic resource for sports fisheries and recreation are conducted. Requests for service for aesthetic reasons are not considered. Any water body or canal less than 10 acres are exempt from the state permitting process.
Salvinia on the Palatlakaha River
Arthropod Breeding Sites
Certain retention ponds and other manmade aquatic sites are considered for management purposes if the site is located on a County easement and produces aquatic plants suitable for arthropod breeding.
Some aquatic plants found in certain water bodies and drainage ditches may provide suitable breeding habitats for some disease vectoring arthropods. When the need arises, the Aquatic Plant Management Section will treat these aquatic plants to help manage arthropod breeding and, when deemed necessary, restore the flow of drainage ditches to original capacity. This work is performed by the use of herbicides or, when practical, by reclamation.
Special Projects with Other Agencies
Lake County has partnered with other government agencies to provide aquatic plant management activities for special local-need projects. The County is 100 percent reimbursed from the different agencies for all work performed.
Examples include the Ferran Park shoreline enhancement project in Eustis, the lake enhancement project in Umatilla and water hyacinths management in west Volusia County.
Aquatic Plant Management Procedures (PDF)