Seeking volunteers for aquatic plant survey

Vernon - posted Aug, 05 2013

VERNON - The Vernon Conservation Commission is seeking volunteers to assist in a survey of the Tankerhoosen River in Vernon to locate non-native invasive aquatic plants. Volunteer training, followed by a river walk, will take place Saturday, Aug. 24. Training will be conducted at the Red Barn at Valley Falls Farm on Valley Falls Road in Vernon from 8:30 to 10 a.m., followed by a river walk from 10 a.m. to noon. This is the fourth year of continuing watershed surveys. Concentrations of variable-leaved milfoil and fanwort, invasive plants that degrade wildlife habitat and water quality and impair recreational use of lakes and streams, were removed from Walker Reservoir East and Valley Falls Pond in Vernon in 2010. The plants have returned to the ponds and will be removed again. This volunteer survey will assess whether they have spread downstream within the Tankerhoosen River, where they could potentially affect the health of other waterbodies and the river itself. The Aug. 24 training session will feature identification of a number of invasive aquatic plants that may be of concern in the Tankerhoosen River watershed. Survey teams will be formed, and will be assigned to walk designated segments of the river. The individual river segments will vary from approximately 0.5 to 1.25 miles in length. Participants should wear long sleeves and pants, and boots or shoes that can get wet, and should bring a backpack or waistpack, cell phone, insect repellant, suncreen, hat and water bottle; snacks will be provided. The Survey rain date is Sunday, Aug. 25, but the training will still be held on Saturday. Volunteers must be at least 18-years-old and must sign a waiver of liability that will be provided at the training. Volunteers must register by Wednesday, Aug. 21. Please email Vernon Conservation Commission at or call the Vernon Planning Department at 860-870-3635 if you would like to assist with the survey. By participating in this project, you can help to protect Vernon’s natural habitats and native species.

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