Alliance Will Bring Lake Host Program to Ossipee Lake

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Freedom — June 5, 2003 — Ossipee Lake Alliance has been selected by the New Hampshire Lakes Association to manage this year’s Lake Host program for Ossipee Lake.

The popular program, which is co-funded by the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration and the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services, helps prevent the spread of milfoil, an invasive weed species that has infested many of the state’s lakes. Lake Hosts are stationed at public boat ramps to distribute an educational pamphlet and conduct courtesy boat and trailer inspections to prevent the plant from entering or leaving state waters.

This year’s program, which will be co-managed by Green Mountain Conservation Group, will be more extensive than last year’s effort, according to Alliance executive director David Smith. Lake Hosts will staff the state’s Pine River public boat ramp on weekends and holidays from June 14th through Labor Day, giving the program an earlier start and a longer duration than last year’s initiative.

Ossipee Lake has two areas of milfoil infestation, in Danforth Brook as it enters Broad Bay and in the channel between upper and lower Danforth Pond. While milfoil can be controlled by hand-harvesting and by covering it with large mats known as bottom barriers, there is no known method of eradicating it.

The Lake Host program is important to Ossipee Lake because many boaters using the public ramp are from outside the local area and may be unfamiliar with milfoil and the threat it poses. More than 500 boats were inspected at the Pine River ramp in last year’s program.

In addition to providing staffing on weekends and holidays, the Alliance plans to reach boaters on weekdays through a voluntary sign-in process at the site’s kiosk where the milfoil pamphlet will be available. The Alliance also hopes to enlist volunteers from local community service and conservation organizations to participate.

The Lake Host program is part of the Alliance’s Ossipee Lake Protection Program, the details of which may be found on the Internet at www.ossipeelake.org.

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