Lake Captain & Deckhand Program
The NLDC continues to expand the ‘Lake Captain and Deckhand’ program, the aquatic invasive species (AIS) volunteer lake monitoring program. Volunteers are trained to monitor their shorelines and shallow areas with soft substrates where AIS are most likely found. This program relies on volunteers’ intimate knowledge of the lakes and extensive time spent on the lakes. These factors enable identification of infestation locations to occur early so that management is more efficient and cost-effective. We encourage folks to simply ‘look in the water’ when they are out enjoying the lakes. Even if you don’t see an aquatic invasive species your time still counts. During the summer of 2012, over 400 hours of lake monitoring were conducted by volunteer ‘Lake Captains and Deckhands’ which is a great accomplishment! Remember, volunteering is as easy as walking down your shoreline and noticing what plants have washed up, or keeping your eyes open while you are out fishing or taking a pontoon ride on a sunny day!
We offer adult and children’s aquatic invasive species programs and educational materials to the community focused on raising awareness about ‘the big three’: curly leaf pondweed, purple loosestrife, and Eurasian water milfoil (not currently found in the Manitowish Waters Chain of Lakes). A high priority for the summer 2013 AIS program is to identify and map areas infested with curly leaf pondweed and purple loosestrife. We verify and map locations where ‘Captains and Deckhands’ report sightings of invasive species.