Lake Opechee milfoil treatment delayed because herbicide found ineffective

LACONIA— A scheduled treatment of milfoil in Lake Opechee was abruptly postponed this week when the chemical herbicide to be applied was found to have produced less than optimal results at other locations.
The treatment was scheduled for Wednesday, July 10. However, the night before Amy Smagula, who manages the exotic species program at the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (DES) and Pete Beisler of Aquatic Control Technology, the firm contracted to apply the herbicide, decided to postpone the treatment.
In an e-mail to Suzanne Perley, treasurer of the Lake Opechee Preservation Association, Smagula explained that the lake was to be treated with Sculpin, a formulation of 2, 4 D, which was applied successfully at Ephraim's Cove on Lake Winnisquam in the past. She said that Sculpin has been applied at several locations during the past few weeks, but when Beisler and Smagula visited them recently expecting to find the milfoil decomposing they found the plants were still healthy.
Smagula said that Renovate MaxG, another formulation of 2, 4 D could be applied, but not as scheduled because the notices to abutters referred only to Sculpin and the products could not be exchanged without re-notifying abutters. Consequently, the treatment, using Renovate MaxG, has been rescheduled to September.
Perley said that the treatment will cover 13 acres, divided between the areas at the north end of the lake near Anthony Drive and the eastern shore below the Lakeport Dam, at a cost of $13,256. She said that DES awarded the association a grant equal to 40-percent of the cost and the city and the association are splitting the balance evenly.