POSTED: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 - 5:53pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 - 8:48pm
Tyler , TX (KETK) — Water Hyacinth may look pretty with it's lavender and pink flowers floating on top of the water, but this plant poses a threat to the aquatic environment in Lake Quitman.
Water Hyacinth originated from South America and was first discovered in Lake Quitman in 2001.
These plants have an extremely fast reproduction rate, so they grow and spread at a rapid pace. If the plants run wild, the seeds will continue to bloom until they block access for boaters. The plants strip the surrounding water of oxygen, which prevents underwater plants from growing. This in turn keeps the fish away. Ultimately, it creates an area of dead water.
The Tyler Texas Parks and Wildlife Department has maintained the Water Hyacinth levels in Lake Quitman for a decade. However with the recent rainstorms, Kevin Storey said, "A rain event flushed the plant from the contained portion of the lake to the main area ".
The department has taken many precautions, and a lot of time, to prevent this from becoming a major problem. Whether they physically remove the plants or treat it with chemicals, "We've been coming every year, twice a year, to check for it's presence".
Their efforts have been successful.
In order to prevent the spread of Water Hyacin to other lakes in the area, simply rinse off the boat after a day on Lake Quitman.