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Milfoil harvesting to return on Vaseux Lake after years of persistent pressure

Waging war against milfoil

Milfoil harvesting will resume on Vaseux Lake in the South Okanagan for the first time in more than 30 years.

Conservationists and residents have long called for action at the lake. Milfoil is an invasive species that can have a negative impact on water quality and local species.

Other regional lakes regularly use rototilling as a tactic to combat milfoil. Vaseaux Lake will start smaller with a harvester.

"The Vaseux Lake Stewardship Association would like to thank James Littley of the Okanagan Basin Water Board who, through his persistent efforts and support from the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen, has been able to get the milfoil harvester back into Vaseux Lake," reads a press release from Norm Gaumont, a local resident and member of the Stewardship Association.

They hope to upgrade to a rototiller in the future, which they say is better at permanently removing milfoil by its roots.

"The Association has been in talks with representatives of the Okanagan Nation Alliance to collaborate on this pilot project in efforts to move forward for next year. For now, home owners and visitors to the lake can once again enjoy swimming, kayaking and other aquatic activities without having to move through a large infestation of milfoil," wrote Gaumont.

"Vaseux Lake has become a very popular tourist area for those who would enjoy nature without motorized boats and large numbers of cyclists and ebikes. It is one of the last areas in the South Okanagan with a wildlife and bird sanctuary along a lake that allows people to enjoy nature peacefully."



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