Aquatic Weed Control Program
The Aquatic Weed Control Act of 1991 directs and regulates the Aquatic Weed Control Program. The purpose of the program is to assist North Carolina citizens and local governments burdened with aquatic weed infestations. The philosophy is that by responding early to localized outbreaks the Division of Water Resources can mitigate the long-term economic and environmental impacts these species impose. Allowing aquatic weeds to spread, as with all invasive species, only exacerbates the problem.
What services are provided?
The program is well equipped and is able to provide management and eradication operations, infestation surveys, and site assessments. Staff is available to provide recommendations and offer free consultation. Financial assistance and operational support in the form of cost-share arrangements are available to Counties, Municipalities, Soil & Water Districts, Drainage Districts, Public Utilities, and other government agencies. Private landowners are eligible for technical assistance but not operational or financial support. Private landowners can also contact their county offices of the Agricultural Extension Service for further assistance.
How does one apply for financial assistance?
- A telephone call, letter or email may serve as the initial communication. Be prepared to describe the problem in detail.
- Program staff will need to conduct a site visit in most circumstances.
- A resolution approved and signed by the local board or council will serve as the official application for assistance. Download Model Resolution.
- Requests received by October 15 of each year will be considered for inclusion in the work-plan for the following year.
Do you need help with aquatic weeds? Contact Rob Emens at (919) 707-9012.
Aquatic Weeds Are Problematic Because They:
- Divert water flows causing erosion and flooding.
- Impede recreational activities like swimming, fishing, boating, and water sports.
- Compete with native vegetation which can lead to ecological shifts.
- Form dense growths that become navigation hazards.
- Clog water intake systems of industries, municipalities and irrigators.
- Create breeding habitat for mosquitoes and other pests.
- Become more difficult and expensive to control if ignored -- rapid response to developing infestations can reduce the damage caused by noxious weeds and the cost of controlling them.
- Economic & Environmental Impacts of NC Aquatic Weed Infestations
What aquatic weeds are found in North Carolina?
- Alligatorweed (Alternanthera philoxeroides)
- Creeping Water Primrose (Ludwigia grandiflora)
- Egeria (Egeria densa)
- Eurasian watermilfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum)
- Giant Salvinia (Salvinia molesta)
- Hydrilla (Hydrilla verticillata)
- Parrotfeather (Myriophyllum aquaticum)
What methods are used to control aquatic weeds?
- Physical: Water level manipulation, deepening near-shore areas, use of dyes or bottom covers.
- Mechanical: Removal of weeds with hand tools or mechanical equipment.
- Biological: Use of herbivorous fish or insects and diseases that attack specific weeds.
- Chemical: Use of herbicides approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for aquatic use.