The Upper Saranac Foundation (USF) is pleased to demonstrate another successful year of AIS management at Fish Creek Campground and upstream into the campground’s tributary.
The 2021 Fish Creek Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Management Project Report, which is now available to the public, summarizes the data and program highlights for the Fish Creek AIS Management Project (FCAISMP) since its inception in 2016. This project was made possible through funding from donations made to the Upper Saranac Foundation (USF) and through grants from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Adirondack Aquatic Invasive Species Spread Prevention Program, Parks & Trails New York, and the Cloudsplitter Foundation.
Removal and control of AIS in the Upper Saranac Lake watershed at Fish Creek protects downstream waters from infestation and helps prevent the export of AIS to non-infested waters. The program protects economic value through recreation, tourism, sportsmanship, and second home ownership by providing clear, weed-free waterways.
To view the complete report, (click here).
The report includes project activities that can be summarized in the following key points:
- To implement the FCAISMP, a fundraising campaign initiated by USF raised over $60,000 in donations. Additional funding was awarded to USF in the amount of $100,000 from the DEC Invasive Species Rapid Response and Control Grant.
- Three years of initial intensive management in the campground (Upper Fish Creek Pond and Square Pond) concluded in 2019; 2021 was the second year of the maintenance phase of the FCAISMP funded entirely by USF.
- In 2021, USF invested $12,162 into 210 diver hours. The divers harvest 213 pounds of invasive milfoil from within the campground’s ponds. This was a reduction from 2020 when $17,375 was invested into 300 diver hours that removed 675 pounds of AIS.
- With the assistance of a $19,000 grant from Parks & Trails New York in 2020 and 2021, USF expanded management upstream of the campground bridge. In 2020, $13,900 was invested into 240 hours of dive time and 3,763 pounds of AIS was removed. Harvesting intensified in the creek in 2021 with $20,570 invested into 330 dive hours, removing 7,000 pounds of milfoil.
- In 2019, AIS containment booms, purchased through a grant from the Cloudsplitter Foundation, were placed just upstream of the Fish Creek Campground boat launch. The booms prevent fragmented invasive plants from floating downstream into managed areas within the Campground and USL. In 2021 3,400 pounds of AIS were removed from the containment booms.
- Since the inception of the FCAISMP, 58,921 pounds — 29.46 tons — of milfoil has been removed from the campground and its tributary, and an additional 8,800 pounds of AIS was removed from the containment booms.
The FCAISMP is part of a larger watershed protection program, developed by USF, that uses a combination of AIS prevention, monitoring, management, control activities, and education to inhibit AIS spread.