Aquatic and Other Invasive Species
The Five Invasive Species Common to Eagle River Area
An invasive species can be any type of living organism – a plant, fish, fungus, or bacteria for example – that is not native to an ecosystem and that does harm. They can harm the environment, the economy, and even human health. Species that grow and reproduce quickly, and spread aggressively, with potential to cause harm, are given the label of “invasive”.
Once introduced, these non-natives are separated from the predators, parasites, and diseases that kept them in balance in their native environments. With such controls lost or diminished, they often become pests, some to the extent that they injure ecosystems and cause economic damage. In addition, some species have adaptations that allow them to overtake and possibly displace resident species.
Invasive species are primarily spread by human activities, often unintentionally. People, and the goods we use, travel around the world very quickly, and they often carry uninvited species with them.
Invasive species can affect property values, influence economies of water-dependent communities such as ours, and are costly to manage.
Your lake association has been working closely with the Eagle River Chain of Lakes Association, the Unified Lower Eagle River Chain of Lakes Commission, Vilas County Land and Water Conservation Department, and the Wisconsin DNR to prevent and manage invasive species on our lake, waterways, and shorelines.
Some invasive species that are currently a threat to our waters include Eurasian water milfoil, yellow iris, yellow loosestrife, and purple loosestrife. In addition, oak wilt, a deadly fungal disease affecting red oaks, has been confirmed at two different locations on our lake.
Click on the links to read more about each invasive species, and to learn what we’re doing to manage it.