Herbicide Applications Done For This Year

There will be no further herbicide applications this year on Chautauqua Lake.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation has denied the town of Ellery’s application to apply herbicides in Bemus Bay. The town requested the application of Aquathol K and Navigate for one day between July 8 and July 31 to control Eurasian milfoil and curlyleaf pondweed.

Bemus Bay was part of the herbicide application Ellery pursued in the spring but the area was not authorized at the time.

DEC officials decided that, after a vegetation survey, there was no need to apply herbicides in the area.

“Following receipt of the applications, department staff completed a vegetation survey of the area,” Robert Freeze, DEC pesticide control specialist, wrote in a letter to the town. “Staff determined that milfoil was present in just trace amounts in the proposed treatment areas in Bemus Bay and there was very little curly-leaf pondweed. The curly-leaf pondweed which was observed was at the end of its life cycle. The permit applications are denied. Since there was just trace amounts of Eurasian milfoil and very little curly-leaf pondweed, the department cannot issue permits for an herbicide application. The target species must be present in sufficient quantities to justify application of aquatic herbicides.”

A report by the county’s third-party agency regarding the effectiveness of the spring herbicide application is due in about a month, county legislators learned earlier this week. A preliminary report was given by David McCoy, Chautauqua County watershed coordinator, to members of the county Planning and Economic Development Committee earlier this week. McCoy told legislators that the herbicide application in Burtis Bay earlier this year has shown good results, with people are able to water ski in Burtis Bay for the first time in years. McCoy also sadi a tour of the lake with the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office showed very little floating vegetation.

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