Lake McMurray is a 167 acre lake system in the Puget Sound foothills about 50 miles north of Seattle. This lake like many others in Western Washington have been heavily impacted by the invasive aquatic weed Eurasian Milfoil. The Lake McMurray community banded together in the late 1990’s and hired Aquatechnex biologists to help them develop an Integrated Aquatic Vegetation Management Plan. This document was developed after a in depth study of the lake, input from the community and the local and regional government entities. The document was used to apply for and receive funding from the Washington Department of Ecology to implement the strategy our team developed.
In the summer of 2000, Lake McMurray was treated with Sonar Aquatic Herbicide in a program designed by our team to remove Eurasian Milfoil from the lake system. Sonar is a product that can be used selectively against this noxious aquatic weed. Our team put together a program that maintained Sonar levels in the lake in the 10-15 parts per billion range for 6 weeks that summer. Sampling after the initial treatment allowed us to bump the levels back to near 15 ppb. By the end of the summer in 2000, Eurasian Milfoil was completely gone from Lake McMurray.
Since then, the Integrated Plan has called for twice yearly surveys of the lake for milfoil and other invasive species. Our biologists have continued this work and documented the absences of Eurasian Milfoil and the expansion of the native aquatic plant communities. The 2011 summer survey has been completed and the results remain, no Eurasian Milfoil in the lake. This program initially cost the community approximately $70,000.00 of which Washington Department of Ecology grants largely funded. As this program has delivered 10 years of milfoil free conditions in the lake, the investment has paid off!