Suspicious Aquatic Plant? Connect With Us

June 29, 2023

Eurasian watermilfoil or spiked water-milfoil a submerged aquatic plant, grows in still or slow-moving water, and is considered to be a highly invasive species
Our community cares deeply about conserving our land and water. The threat of an invasive species is real for the lakes, rivers, and our regional economy. Last summer, Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust received numerous calls about suspicious plants in our lakes.

“It’s scary to believe you’ve found an invasive aquatic or terrestrial plant. If you think you have found something while walking or out on the water, don’t fret – call RLHT,” says Lucinda Wigfield, the 2022 Maine Conservation Corps (MCC) Environmental Steward who coordinated RLHT’s Headwaters Lake Protection Program and responded to many calls about suspicious plants.


“Never remove an entire plant since this can cause fragmentation and allow it to spread if it is invasive, and if it isn’t, then it disturbs the native plants,” shared Wigfield. “Disturbed soil makes it easier for invasive plants to move in.” If you see something suspicious, Wigfield suggests following these steps:


–       Take a picture of the plant in place.

–       Mark the location (Open Google Maps and a screenshot of your current location).

–       Aquatic Plants: Collect a cutting about 6-12 inches long, bag it with water, and keep it cold.

–       Terrestrial Plants: Collect a cutting off the top and place it in a sealed bag.

–       Bring the specimen to RLHT as soon as possible.


In the summer of 2022, Terry and Bob Muzzey found what they believed to be Purple Loosestrife growing on the side of the road. They came into RLHT and received the contact information of the individual who deals with invasive plants. They returned to the location, took pictures, and included a Google map image with a dropped pin of the plant’s location. RLHT’s Community Conservation Corps members surveyed the area and reported the infestation to the Department of Environmental Protection. Because of Muzzey’s vigilance, they did not spread the invasive plant and helped us find the plant and report it.


There are no known invasive aquatic plants in the Rangeley Lakes Region. 


For Water Quality Inquiries

Julia Morin

Julia Morin

More Watersheds News