Sunday, August 1, 2010

Water Plants gone Wild! Volunteers Needed

Water Chestnut plants have covered the surface of Tonawanda Creek near Ellicott Island Park and parts of the Erie Canal (see photo). This invasive plant eliminates native plants by forming a dense layer on the surface that blocks sun from reaching the native plants underwater. Water chestnut invasions also limit boating and fishing.
[Buffalo News photo - Click to enlarge]

Buffalo Niagara RIVERKEEPER
's new habitat restoration program, RestoreCorps, is to aiming to remove the water chestnut by mobilizing VOLUNTEERS in conjunction with U.S. Fish and Wildlife's Great Lakes Fish and Conservation Office which will use a mechanical harvester to remove plants for six days starting August 2nd. About 200 metric TONS of plants will be removed from a 6 acre area.

VOLUNTEERS are needed in two ways:

1. From Monday, August 2 through Friday, August 6, between 8am to 6pm daily, volunteers are needed to off-load plants from the harvester onto a conveyor system escalating up the bankside to the parking lot, where plants will be loaded into dump trucks and transported to a compost facility.

2. On Saturday, August 7 from 8:30 am-12:30 pm, volunteers are needed to hand pull any remaining plants from the shoreline and from the water by canoe, kayak, and boat. Volunteers will be trained in proper removal techniques.

To VOLUNTEER, please contact Bryan LoVullo by calling 852-7483, extension 23, or by E-mail at

For more information, see an article in The Buffalo News and additional photos at

A video from WIVB News is below:

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