DNREC removing weeds from Milton’s Wagamons Pond

Warm weather, rain, nutrients from surrounding properties fuel growth
August 1, 2022

Story Location:
Wagamons Pond
Milton, DE 19968
United States

In response to the growth of a large amount of aquatic weeds, Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control has begun removing those weeds with its large algae harvester.

Work began the last week of July. The weeds can be seen in patches throughout the pond, but a significant portion of the growth is along the Mulberry Street side and in front of the boat launch. The harvester, a metal vessel with a conveyor-belt system attached to it, has been tied to a tree on the far side of the pond since.

Michael Globetti, DNREC spokesperson, said a constituent brought the issue to the attention of a DNREC fisheries biologist, who, upon further examination, determined harvesting was warranted. The weeds are being removed to allow for angler access, he said.

The harvester is typically used for macroalgae, but Globetti said algae is not growing in the pond. It’s primarily lyngbya, but the weeds also include hydrilla and cabomba, he said.

The last time harvesting of this nature was done at Wagamons was last year, and it’s often done annually, said Globetti.

Once collected by the harvester, the weeds are loaded into a dump truck using a portable conveyor-belt system. Typically, Globetti said, the algae or weeds are disposed of at state wildlife areas near the pond.

The weather isn’t affecting just Wagamons Pond. Globetti said this summer has been busier than normal. With the hot temperatures and rainfall, which adds nutrients into the pond from surrounding properties, the weather has fueled growth in many ponds, he said.

Despite the aquatic weed growth, Wagamons Pond’s water level remains normal, said Globetti.

Editor’s Note: This story has been updated with photos taken Tuesday, Aug. 2.

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