Greetings Invasive Plant Patrollers!
LSM provided training and informational sessions in an online format in 2020 due to the CoViD-19 outbreak. Online trainings from both 2020 and this year were recorded and links are provided below for your viewing at a convenient time. Events as part of our current summer season are posted below and additional postings will be made all summer long.
Quick Links to Additional Resources
- IPP Handbook – The IPP handbook is updated with new content throughout the year
- IAS Reporting Guide – Learn how LSM can help you identify suspicious and curious lake phenomena
- LSM IAP Protocols & Procedures – Additional protocols and procedures for Invasive Plant Patrollers
- Aquatic Phenomena Photo Submission Form – Please use this form if you wish to submit photos for identification assistance. If you have not submitted photos this way before, please see the IAS Reporting Guide for instructions prior to completing the form. If you are a Certified Boat Inspector, please use this form.
- Aquatic Plant Botanizer Circle Photo Submission Form – Please use this form if you wish to share photos for at one of our “Aquatic Plant ” online sessions
In-Person Invasive Aquatic Plant Paddles
Plant paddles provide a fun, informal way to learn about the threat of invasive aquatic plants and the importance of early detection. All attendees will receive (and learn how to use) LSM’s waterproof, tear-resistant “Quick Key” which allows users to quickly determine whether or not any plant found growing in the lake is suspicious. We will collect samples of native aquatic plants, observe samples of the invasive plants that are known to occur in these waterbodies, and practice skills needed for local invasive aquatic plant survey efforts.
Plant paddles take place both on shore and on the water. Attendees will need their own shallow draft boats (canoes, kayaks, small row boats or inflatables), paddles, and PFDs. Other equipment and materials will be provided.
This year, for the first time, we are also offering a shorter (two-hour) Aquatic Invader Tour, especially for experienced IPPers who wish to get some first-hand experience observing invaders in their un-natural habitat. We will visit two of Maine’s eleven listed invasive aquatic plants on this tour: variable water-milfoil (Myriophyllum heterophyllum) and spiny naiad (Najas minor).
Pre-registration is required for all of these events.
Wednesday, July 14, from 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM
INVASIVE PLANT PADDLE – Big Lake
229 Big Lake Road, Big Lake Township/Princeton Maine
Please register here.
Thursday, July 29, from 10 AM – 12 PM
AQUATIC INVADER TOUR – Lake Arrowhead
(Address and directions will be provided once you have registered)
Thursday, July 29, from 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
INVASIVE PLANT PADDLE – Lake Arrowhead
(Address and directions will be provided once you have registered)
** Please note that a light lunch (hamburgers) will be provided for the two sessions. People who have dietary restrictions or preferences should pack their own lunch.
How to Lead an Invasive Plant Paddle
Plant Paddles are guided explorations that take place on shore and on the water. They are a fun, informal way to learn about Maine’s native aquatic plants, as well as the invasive aquatic plants that threaten Maine waters. In this live webinar, Roberta Hill will provide you with everything you need to know about leading a plant paddle on your favorite waterbody. This webinar is open to all and should be especially valuable to those of you who wish to activate (or reinvigorate) an Invasive Plant Patrol team on your lake! There will be plenty of time for questions, answers, and for sharing ideas.
Invasive Plant Patrol 101 ~ Online Certification Course
Invasive Plant Patrol 101 (LSM’s IPP certification course) is comprised of three parts:
- Part 1 provides a general introduction to the threat of aquatic invaders;
- Part 2 provides guidance for conducting an invasive plant screening survey, including discussion of tools and techniques;
- Part 3 takes a deep dive into Aquatic Plant ID with a focus on the eleven invasive aquatic plants considered to be most imminent threats to our state, and their native look-a-likes.
Participants who wish to become LSM Certified Invasive Plant Patrollers must pass a short online quiz at the conclusion of each course section. The quiz is optional for all others.
In the final stage of certification, participants are asked to collect several aquatic plants on their own, and then attend one of LSM’s regularly scheduled Plant ID Zoom Sessions (schedule and registration below) for feedback on tentative ID’s and/or guided identification.
IPP 101 Parts 1: Introduction to Aquatic Invaders in Maine
IPP 101 Parts 2: How to Hunt for Aquatic Invaders
IPP 101 Part 3: Aquatic Plants; How to Identify Maine’s 11 Most Unwanted and their Common Native Look-Alikes
Training, Networking and Technical Support Opportunities
These first-come, first-served Zoom-based technical assistance sessions are open to all, but attendance may be limited based upon the session. Larger group and/or customized IPP team meetings may be scheduled by contacting Roberta directly at email@example.com.
IPPer Zoom Room
IPPer Zoom Room sessions are be held weekly starting June 22nd and run throughout the survey season. Some sessions will have a theme (to be announced in advance via the LSM e-news); other sessions will be more open ended. We welcome Invasive Plant Patrollers of all ages and abilities to drop in whenever you like to share your IPP experiences, ask questions, discuss challenges, collaborate on actions, or simply to be in the company of fellow lake stewards who share your love of lakes! Please register to join as many sessions as you like!
Starting Tuesday, June 22, IPPer Zoom Room will held weekly at 1PM. Please note you must register for each instance separately.
July 20th at 1pm
July 27th at 1pm
Aquatic Plant Botanizers’ Circle
Please join us for one of our online plant ID sessions. NO botany skills required, just some pictures of plants from your lake and a dash of curiosity! In keeping with the “teach a man to fish” philosophy of providing assistance, we will help walk you through the process of first, determining if you have found a suspicious plant; and next, identifying your plant. Please submit photos of any plants you would like to share at the session in advance of the session using the form below.
PLEASE click here for directions on how to take a “readable” photo.
Starting Tuesday, June 22, the Aquatic Plant Botanizers’ Circle will held weekly at at 3PM. Please note you must register for each instance separately.
July 20th at 3pm
July 27th at 3pm
Submission Form for the Aquatic Plant Botanizers’ Circle
Survey123 Webinar Training V.2021.1
LSM’s IAP Screening Survey Documentation forms have gone digital! With the help of our friends at the Maine DEP, and all of you who piloted this new platform last year and provided us with helpful feedback, Invasive Plant Patrollers now have the option of recording screening survey data on their smartphones, tablets, or computers. Paper data forms are still perfectly functional and welcome, but for those of you who wish to go paperless, you now have a great new tool. Please attend this webinar featuring Becky Schaffner from Maine DEP to learn all about the app and how to get started!
Becky will demonstrate the process of accessing and updating the digital screening survey form on Survey123, provide an orientation to each section of the form, and guide us through the data upload process which will allow users to view their submitted data online in near real-time. There will be plenty of time for questions and answers.
Please join us for the training demonstration on July 8th at 1 pm
~Link to register for the live demonstration~
For those who are not able to attend, a recording of this webinar will be made available.
Advanced Plant ID Webinar Series
Learn how to confidently identify milfoils, bladderworts, and common pondweeds to species level through this 3-part series presented by LSM’s Invasive Species Program Director, Roberta Hill.
Special thanks to York County Invasive Aquatic Species Project Founder and Director, Laurie Callahan, for her extensive help in preparing these webinars.
Advanced Plant ID Part 1 – Milfoils
Recorded 8/5/2020 ~ Link to recording ~
Advanced Plant ID Part 2 – Bladderworts
~ Recording will be available in the near future ~
Advanced Plant ID Part 3 – Common Pondweeds
Recorded 8/19/2020 ~ Link to recording ~
Special Trainings Focused Upon Recently-Confirmed Infestations
The Hunt for Invasive Milfoil in Big Lake & How You Can Help
~Link to recording~
The Hunt for Invasive Naiad in Lake Arrowhead & How You Can Help
~Link to recording~
Each webinar is specifically focused on a particular invasive aquatic plant of concern: variable water-milfoil (Myriophyllum heterophyllum) confirmed in late 2019 in Big Lake in Washington County, and spiny naiad (Najas minor) just recently confirmed in Lake Arrowhead in York County. Both sessions will include what is currently known about the extent of spread in these lakes; the biology and typical habitat of the species of concern; the key features by which each species may be positively identified; how to distinguish each from a host of native look alike plants; and importantly, what to do if one finds any suspicious aquatic plants while out on the water.
The sessions will be presented by John McPhedran (MEDEP) and Roberta Hill (LSM) in the form of a live online (Zoom) webinar. The trainings will be recorded, and a link to the recordings will be made available on the LSM website, and to all interested parties. The live sessions provide an opportunity for questions and answers.
Though some time will be devoted in each of the trainings to a discussion of the specific infestations mentioned above, much of the content will be more general, covering the fundamentals of each species of concern; how to spot it, and what to do next. For this reason, all who are interested are welcome to attend.
June 16, 2020, the Downeast Lakes Land Trust Presents Milfoil in Big Lake: What is it and how do we respond? with guest speakers: John McPhedran (Maine Department of Environmental Protection) & Roberta Hill (Lake Stewards of Maine)
The recent discovery of variable-leaf milfoil in Big Lake is a wakeup call for the watersheds of the Downeast Lakes region, which are threatened with the invasion of exotic plant species. These unwanted species can cause irreparable damage to fisheries and native ecosystems, and they can be spread unintentionally on boats, float planes, and even GORE-TEX waders! Join representatives from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection and Lake Stewards of Maine to learn about the planned response to the Big Lake infestation, as well as how to identify aquatic invasive plants, how to report outbreaks, and how to avoid accidentally spreading these harmful species.
For more on Downeast Lakes Land Trust, please visit their website. www.downeastlakes.org