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Water Chesnuts Update

We are happy to report that the DEC has once again granted a permit to conduct spraying of the water chestnuts in the lake. As I’m sure everyone has noticed, we have done a wonderful job reducing the plants' infestation and limiting it to a few remaining specific areas.  However, the work is not complete!  We are moving ahead again this spring and summer but need more funds!  In addition, as hopefully many of you have noticed, we have painstakingly begun, with the help of the wonderful Swan Lake Fire Department, to manage the lake more effectively both in summer and winter.  We need everyone’s help with management issues and welcome not only financial donations but physical assistance with regulation which could be reporting violations or simply spreading the word that the lake is private and is being managed appropriately.  As always, we welcome any donations people can provide, are open to input and your participation in any way you can.  If you'd like to help, please make checks payable to

26 Broadway, Suite 901, New York, NY  10004

Thank you for your help and support.

Water Chestnut pod.

Water Chestnuts: Background

If a shoreline property owner in New York or the Northeast complains to you about their water chestnut problem, don’t think they are talking about Chinese takeout. The European water chestnut (Trapa natans), an invasive aquatic plant released inadvertently into waters of the Northeast in the late 1800s, is slowly but inexorably spreading throughout New York State, clogging waterways, lakes and ponds and altering aquatic habitats.

It must be pointed out that this plant species is not the same as the water chestnut which can be purchased in cans at the supermarket. The fruits of T. natans, however, are used as a source of food in Asia and have been utilized for their medicinal (and claimed) magical properties.

T. natans is native to Europe, Asia and Africa. In its native habitat, the plant is kept in check by native insect parasites. These insects are not present in North America and the plant, once released into the wild, is free to reproduce rapidly. T. natans colonizes areas of freshwater lakes and ponds and slow-moving streams and rivers where it forms dense mats of floating vegetation, causing problems for boaters and swimmers and negatively impacting aquatic ecosystem functioning.

Common names: horned water chestnut, water caltrop

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Residents of Swan Lake

Please be advised that mid to late June, weather permitting, members of The Pond and Lake Connection pursuant to a permit issued by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation to the owner of the lake will be applying a state registered an aquatic chemical treatment to the water chestnut plant in the lake. The chemical is not harmful to wildlife and fish, however, it should not be ingested and it is recommended that people not swim in the water for 48 hours after the application.

2020 Treatment Dates TBD (check back for updates)

Any questions, please call Paul J. Edelstein, Catskill Clean Water Fund  212 425-1999

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