Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS)

AIS Survey identifies new AIS

Recently, on a beautiful summer afternoon, a team of volunteers surveyed the east side of the lake, searching for AIS (aquatic invasive species). They zig-zagged up and down the shore, throwing out rakes to pull up vegetation from along the shoreline and the weed line. It was messy work but productive. Carolyn Dinforf from Fortin Consulting assisted with identifying the various samples.


Fortunately, the team did not find any starry stonewart. They did find Eurasian milfoil, including a sample of what is suspected to be hybrid milfoil. Two zebra mussels were found on coontail plants near the Independence Beach boat launch. In the marsh near the Vinland Center, they spotted a yellow flower that turned out to be yellow iris. Volunteer Merry Petticlair got into the water and swam into the marsh to retrieve a sample of this invasive plant which is new to our lake.


Team members included Pat & Dick Wulff, Bente Larson, Kim Klanke, Margaret Mason, Merry Petticlair, Barb Zadeh, Lynn Bisagna, Marty Wilkes, Joel Settles, and Jodie and Grace Garthwait. Pat Wulff organized the event and provided supper for the dirty but hungry team after they returned to shore.

Survey Results:

Eurasian milfoil

Curly-leaf pondweed

Last summer LICA commissioned James Johnson of Freshwater Scientific Services to survey Lake Independence and identify the areas of the lake with the highest concentrations of Eurasian milfoil and curlyleaf pondweed. The curlyleaf pondweed survey was performed in late spring when the growth is peaking; the milfoil survey took place in the summer when the concentrations of milfoil are at their maximum. The data was collected by following a zig-zag course in the shallow areas all around the lakeshore. GPS readings were taken to pinpoint the exact location of each measurement.


The purpose of the survey was to identify those areas where treatment would have maximum beneficial impact. But Johnson recommended to the Board that before we take any action, we develop an Aquatic Plant Management (APM) Plan that spells out our goals and objectives, to provide guidance when prioritizing future projects. There are a number of issues related to treatment plans: cost vs benefit, input from lakeshore owners, areas where treatment would be most effective, what type of herbicide to use, etc. Before drafting our APM plan, the LICA board will be surveying members for their input. We will also be working closely with experts from the U of M, DNR and Three Rivers.

Curly-leaf Pondweed


Potential Treatment Areas

Eurasian Milfoil


Potential Treatment Areas

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LICA meets at 7pm on the second Wednesday of every month at the Independence City Hall and concerned citizens are always welcome!

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