Public meeting will introduce long-term hydrilla management plan for Eno River

Raleigh

Following a successful two-year pilot project to reduce the invasive weed hydrilla in the Eno River, a public information meeting will be held March 1 to review the results of the pilot project and to introduce a longer term treatment plan.

The informal, open house-style meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Cedar Grove Community Center (5800 NC 86 North, approximately 8 miles north of Hillsborough).  Members of the Eno River Hydrilla Management Task Force will describe a proposed widespread action plan to manage the infestation and will be available to answer questions at informational stations.

Hydrilla is a submerged aquatic plant that can create nearly impenetrable mats of stems and leaves in rivers and other waterways. An invasive species from Asia, hydrilla impedes recreational use of waterways, crowds out native vegetation and ultimately can harm fish and other aquatic and bird species. The plant was first discovered in the Eno River basin in the early 1990s in Lake Orange.

In 2014, the task force introduced the EPA approved herbicide fluridone in a 16-mile treatment zone largely within Eno River State Park in Orange and Durham counties. It was the first time the herbicide has been used successfully in a river in North Carolina to combat hydrilla, although it has been used successfully for many years in large lakes. The task force contracted with SePRO Corp. to apply the herbicide in a concentration well within limits approved by the EPA  – a concentration that is both safe for swimmers and boaters and non-toxic to fish and wildlife.

The Eno River Hydrilla Management Task Force comprises federal, state and local government representatives, including those from North Carolina State Parks, the N.C. Division of Water Resources and the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. The group has been working since 2007 to evaluate and address the hydrilla threat in the Eno River.

About North Carolina State Parks
North Carolina State Parks manages more than 231,000 acres of iconic landscape within North Carolina’s state parks, state recreation areas and state natural areas. It administers the N.C Parks and Recreation Trust Fund, including its local grants program, as well as a state trails program, North Carolina Natural and Scenic Rivers and more, all with a mission dedicated to conservation, recreation and education. The state parks system welcomes more than 18 million visitors annually.

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