The Lake Attitash Association’s weed watchers have identified several invasive milfoil weeds in a small area called Turtle Cove (see diagram). The association asks boaters and fishermen to keep out of the shallow cove until the weeds can be removed.
Disturbing the plants with motors, paddles, anchors or fishing gear can break them into fragments that float to other locations and take root. An inch-long piece of milfoil is enough to start growth in another area of the lake.
The association is now evaluating available methods to remove the milfoil, and a chemical treatment may be necessary. Removal may take several weeks.
The association spent about $60,000 in 2012 to eradicate milfoil plants in the lake. The money came from private donations and funding from the towns of Amesbury and Merrimac. In 2013, a smaller number of milfoil weeds were detected in the same area and removed. Some regrowth was anticipated, but monitoring and removing weeds as quickly as possible is expected to keep them in check.
Turtle Cove is a few hundred yards southeast of the dam in Amesbury. The entrance to the area has been marked with signs as a reminder to boaters and fishermen.