Invasives Report

Report on a Morning Searching for the Invasive Water Chestnut (Trapa Natans)

waterchestnutsJoe, Maddie and Daisy Mirabella were with Ann and Lee Farnham early on Saturday morning, June 27th when they went on their annual eradication expedition down Ewing’s Gold Creek and at the Katzenbach School, looking for water chestnuts to eliminate. Four years ago when they first started this effort, there were water chestnuts in the lake at Katzenbach, and there were some in Gold Run as it went from Katzenbach down to the Delaware along the south side of the NJM property, just north of the Trenton Country Club.

They were able to eliminate the water chestnuts they found four years ago by uprooting them completely and carrying them away, but they did such a good job that this year they saw none! Gold Run was clear as was the water at Katzenbach (helped by the collapse of the dam at its western end several years ago which drained the lake).

waterchestnutretrieversMaddie Mirabella, Joe’s aging New Jersey Water Chestnut Retriever (as we’ve dubbed her) is getting on in years, so she asked her new companion, Daisy (an obvious German Pointer mix), to join the group so she could start to instruct Daisy. As luck would have it there were no water chestnuts to be found, but they did retrieve 16 golf balls, one fewer than last year. Maddie always says that it’s good to have a Plan B, and retrieving golf balls is hers. They’ll be displayed at the next EEC meeting, along with the haul from last year (17). Do you suppose there would be any takers at a fundraising auction for the EEC now that there are 33, most in pretty good shape?

Joe will report on this outing at the next meeting on July 21 for those who would like to learn more. While Ann went to check on Katzenbach, Joe and Lee set off down the bed of Gold Run just below where it passes under the Canal (the water level was down from previous years but the footing was still dodgy as they went from rock to rock, also looking for the signs of Water Chestnuts. But they saw nothing even though they walked all the way down Gold Run until they got to the point where it runs into the Delaware River…..but there was no sign of water chestnuts.  A successful outing from the human point of view; not so much for Maddie and Daisy!

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