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News Story
Updated: 10/18/2013 02:16:26PM

Thanks Journal for touring Lake June’s Pond Weed bloom

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Thanks Journal for touring Lake June’s Pond Weed bloom

Dear editor:

Thank you for your front page coverage of the Illinois Pond Weed concern in Lake June. Upon reading your editorial, “Where’s the middle ground in Pondweed Issue,” I called The Journal and publisher Barbara Sheasley to speak about it. I suggested a tour of Lake June by boat to show the crisis it is.

Mat Delaney, camera in hand, met me at my boat and we toured the entire lake. To say he was aghast is not an overstatement. We had to stop several times to get the weed choking our prop removed to be able to proceed. During the trip we were waved down by Dr. Norton on Cole Danley Rd. He stated that he and family had pulled and burned Pond Weed from along their beach and it was already back. And, their personal watercraft had been entangled in the growth and it took two others to pull them out. This was out in open water!

I check the lake out daily. I promise you, I see new infestation on every trip. The stuff is out in 12- to 15-feet of water and all the way up to the beach in many places. FWC is actively working on it with a special granular, and we are hoping to introduce a limited number of sterile carp.

I want to commend The Journal, and Mat Delaney, for taking the time and making the effort to see first hand what the problem is.

Hoz Compton

Lake Placid, Florida

Journal editorial reflected need for middle ground

Dear editor:

I echo Mr. Compton in thanking The Journal, Brian Hurley and Mat Delaney for a fair and balanced report of the events (regarding Illinois Pond Weed). The article echoed the concerns expressed by all, the need for communication between FWC, stakeholders, Highlands County, and others involved before forming a plan. The article also reviewed how FWC would be following up with stakeholders once a plan was in place.

The editorial, too, was very fair and balanced. It said what needed to be said which is “A middle ground must be found. The opposing parties need to get together and realistically put together a plan which would deal with the problem in a way with the least impact on the lake and its recreational use. Common sense and practicality must prevail. Ideological standoffs accomplish nothing except raising everyones’ blood pressure.”

Now that a plan is in place to assist recreational users by treating the pondweed in several key, public recreational and navigational areas around the lake, Clell Ford and others will continue to work on water quality concerns to try and address the core of the problem. I plan to continue doing my part by assisting residents around the lake with aquatic plant control permitting.

I look forward to continuing to work with everyone involved. Together, we can make a positive difference for the future of Lake June.

Sincerely,

Kelle Sullivan

Regional Biologist

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Invasive Plant Management Section

2001 Homeland-Garfield Rd.

Bartow, Fl. 33830




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