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Namaske Lake group in Goffstown seeks Manchester’s help with milfoil

Special to the Union Leader

July 28. 2013 9:19PM

GOFFSTOWN — The Namaske Lake Association is working to remove milfoil from the lake’s waters and is seeking financial help from the city of Manchester to do so.

The lake received a chemical treatment in June, and while dues to the association and grant money from the state have paid for part of the $9,200 cost, there is still an outstanding balance, said Michael Allard, president of the NLA.

Allard said the city owns about 25 percent of acreage that includes the lake, and said the city has not stepped forward to assist with paying for the treatments.

“We’re trying to give a gentle reminder to the city of Manchester, who has not participated at all,” Allard said.

Robert Robinson, environmental permits coordinator for the city, said he was not familiar with the lake or Manchester’s role in supporting it.

“This is the first I’ve ever heard of it,” he said. “I don’t know if we’ve been approached.”

Since 2010, nearly $70,000 has been spent on attempts to eradicate the invasive plant at Namaske Lake, Allard said.

According to Allard, problems with milfoil at the lake, formerly known as the Piscataquog River, began shortly after the Mother’s Day flood of 2006, when Scobie Pond in Francestown overflowed into the Piscataquog watershed system.

From 2006 to 2009, said Allard, the lake went from a 0 percent infestation to 7 percent.

“It made the lake almost unusable,” Allard said. “At the beginning, we sort of thought we’d be able to beat it, but over the years, we’ve realized that’s not a possibility.”

Over time, chemical treatments of the lake have reduced the amount of milfoil present.

“The good news is that they’ve gone down,” Allard said. “But if we stop treating it, we’ll go right back to that 7 percent level.”

The Goffstown Conservation Commission has released $1,000 of town funds — half of what voters approved in March — for milfoil treatment at Namaske Lake, with the other half in reserve for treatment at Glen Lake.

“We’re waiting for an updated report from DES on Glen Lake, and when we get that, we’ll get a sense of what needs to be done,” said Town Administrator Sue Desruisseaux. “Glen Lake needs some attention, but we’re waiting on the final report.”

Desruisseaux said the town allocates funds each year to pay for divers to hand-pull plants in the two lakes.Now that chemical treatments have been applied at Namaske Lake, divers will conduct a follow-up inspection, said Amy Smagula, exotic species coordinator for the Department of Environmental Services.Smagula said the treatment the lake received in 2010, which encompassed 116 acres, was very effective, but that treatment of milfoil is an ongoing initiative.

“It is a serious issue and it’s pretty enmeshed in the Piscataquog River watershed,” she said, noting that milfoil affects about 69 lakes in the state.

Environment Outdoors Goffstown Manchester

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