What to Expect under the new Hamburg Township Aquatic Weed Control S.A.D.

            When the Township Board was notified by Washtenaw County that it would no longer provide aquatic weed control for several lakes in the Township, including Gallagher Lake, Long Lake, Strawberry Lake, Zukey Lake and along the Huron River, the Township worked with interested property owners to establish a new Hamburg Township Aquatic Weed Control special assessment district (S.A.D.).  Aquatic weed control and treatment under the new S.A.D. will begin in 2023. Under the new S.A.D. aquatic weed treatment will include both mechanical and chemical control. 
             Chemical treatment is regulated by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes & Energy (EGLE).  The Township has hired Progressive AE Water Resources Group to manage the treatments under the SAD.  Use of Copper Sulfate to treat Starry Stonewort is no longer approved by EGLE for Strawberry Lake due to protection of the Snuffbox Mussel found in the river near the mouth of Strawberry Lake.  The mussels are protected by the U.S. Department of Interior.  Chemical treatment of aquatic weeds often results in floating weed masses as treated weeds die off.
            Mechanical harvesting is labor-intensive and can cost up to four-times what chemical weed control costs.  It provides only short-term control and will need to be repeated since the removal of all the roots and rhizomes (the continuously growing horizontal underground stem) is unlikely.  While the contractor is cutting and harvesting the aquatic weeds the machine cannot get 100% of the weeds. Some cut plant fragments will not be collected and will be carried by the lake currents to other portions of the lake(s). For safety reasons, weed harvesters will not go between docks.  Property owners may have to rake their beach area to remove loose cut weeds that get away from the mechanical harvest collection.  Raked weeds can be brought ashore and left to dry out.  Once dry, the plant material will be extremely light and crumbly and can be used in flower beds or gardens for fertilizer.
            While the goal of the Township is to provide the best options for aquatic weed control for your lake and the Huron River, the aquatic weeds will never be fully controlled.  There are hundreds of invasive aquatic weeds.  These invasive aquatic weeds will never be fully eradicated, only managed and controlled to the best of our ability as permitted through the State.  The Township knows the S.A.D. will not be perfect. We value your patience while working with the Consultant and the State to provide the best aquatic weed treatment and control for this new S.A.D.

August 7 - 10, 2023 -
Zukey, Strawberry, Gallagher & Loon Lake.  Mechanical harvest work has been scheduled by PLM Lake and Land Management Corp for 8/7/2023 - 8/10/2023.  See attached maps for further details: Treatment location maps.

Chemical weed treatment schedule:
July 25th, 2023
- Zukey, Strawberry, Gallagher & Loon Lake.  See attached maps for treatment locations: Treatment location maps.
June 27th, 2023 - Zukey, Strawberry, Gallagher & Loon Lake.  See attached maps for further details: Treatment location maps.
NOTE: Aqua-Weed Control, Inc. will be posting on June 26th for treatment to be applied on June 27th, 2023.

May 31st, 2023 - Zukey, Strawberry, Gallagher & Loon Lake.  See attached maps for further details:  Treatment location maps.

May 15th , 2023 - Zukey, Strawberry, and Gallagher Lake.   See attached maps for further details:  Treatment location maps.

Algal Blooms on the Lakes:
Residents have been contacting the Township regarding algae blooms that are washing up on their beaches.  The Supervisor, Pat Hohl, has been documenting these occurrences and has been assured by the Livingston County Health Department that they do not contain any cyanotoxins.  The algae
looks like some sort of filamentous algae, that is in a state of decomposition, with a little bit of a bacteria (not cyanotoxin) sheen.  Attached are some EGLE documents that has some pictures for reference. 

If residents have a concern or complaint, they can submit a photo with their location information to Heather Blair, who is the new Environmental Health Director for the Livingston County Health Department.  If the County has available staff, they will respond to the algal bloom complaints to test for cyanotoxins that may be present during a blue-green algae bloom.  Heather Blair can be reached at (517) 546-9858 or by email at hblair@livgov.com.

For any additional questions please contact the Township at:

Updated 08-28-2023

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