Lake Drawdowns: A Great Time to Install LakeMats
In the fall, many lakes across the country use “drawdowns” as a method of controlling overgrowth of lake weeds. The concept is simple. By lowering water levels, lake weeds close to shore are left high and dry and their root systems are exposed to freezing temperatures over the winter, killing off much of the unwanted growth.
Some lake weeds are more susceptible to lake drawdowns than others. Naiads, native aquatic plants, are more likely to be effected than the non-native Eurasian milfoil for example. Still, drawdowns slow the return of nuisance vegetation, such as starry stonewart, the following season.
Drawdowns have little effect on deeper water lake weeds, such as hydrilla. That said, the deeper the drawdown, the longer it will take for lake weeds to return the following year.
One big advantage of lowered water levels during a drawdown is it allows property owners to work on the exposed lake bottom, clearing it of debris, sharp objects, old posts and maybe finding that lost iPod that fell in the lake two years ago.
During the low water period of a lake drawdown, it’s a great time to install LakeMats® or MuckMats® to insure that no lake weeds return in the area covered by your mats. LakeMats® deprive lake weeds of sunlight, preventing them from growing. They also prevent new lake weeds from taking root in the lake bottom soil.
MuckMats® also prevent lake weeds from growing, plus they allow you walk over soft lake bottoms without sinking in the muck.
Obviously, it’s much easier to install LakeMats® or MuckMats® on exposed lake bottoms, making a lake drawdown the perfect time to do the job.
Lake weeds will not return in areas where you place LakeMats® or MuckMats®.
Lake drawdowns are usually done in late fall, allowing the near-shore lake bottom to be exposed over the winter months. Normal lake levels are returned before the following season. Studies have shown no negative impact on fish from drawdowns. In fact, advocates claim drawdowns actually improve fish populations by creating more bedding area in the spring.
If you live on a water body that’s scheduled to be drawn down, and you want a permanent solution to nuisance lake weeds, consider installing LakeMats® or MuckMats® during the drawdown and enjoy your weed free waterfront for years to come.