Is your lake or pond plagued by annual infestations of nuisance and invasive plant species? Are aquatic plants like water chestnut, giant salvinia and water hyacinth reducing open water and interfering with fishing and recreation? Imagine possessing the ability to eradicate these undesirable species usually without having to navigate permitting, herbicide applications and water restrictions. Luckily, you do have that option with mechanical harvesting!
Mechanical harvesting is a tried and true solution for stubborn plant infestations in waterbodies of all types. In fact, mechanical harvesters have been used to manage plant growth in the United States for over a century. When utilized correctly, harvesting helps reduce seasonal plant growth without negatively impacting water quality or the shoreline of a waterbody. Typically, one or two harvests a year are sufficient for most lakes and ponds struggling to control nuisance or invasive plant growth.
Mechanical harvesters come in many shapes and sizes, but they all function in relatively the same way. Most equipment consists of a paddle wheel propelled barge equipped with an adjustable sickle-bar cutting head and mesh conveyor system. Unlike hydro-rakes, which are most effective at targeting floating-leaf and emergent plants with extensive horizontal rooted systems, harvesters are best utilized to remove annual floating leaf and submersed species. Depending on your unique goals, your lake management professional may recommend different cutting widths or onboard storage capacities.
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