Great Lakes Our Water shifting focus to invasive reed in Georgian Bay
A group is looking to get rid of an invasive reed growing around Georgian Bay and along the Highway 400 corridor. This summer the Great Lakes Our Water group is taking a step back from its Stop the Drop water levels drive to bring the invasive plant phragmites to the forefront of the public’s attention.
Executive Director Colin Dobell says the large, dense invasive plant spreads quickly and once it takes root on a beach, the water can become inaccessible in just a couple of years. It spreads by seed, creeping runners, and rerooting if a section of plant is swept away by water and started in Canada’s east coast in the 1920s and has made it within 30 kilometers of Parry Sound.
To stop it from spreading further, as it becomes costly for waterfront owners to abate, Great Lakes Our Water started a crowd mapping and awareness campaign called Stop the Invasion. The campaign includes a smart phone application wherein anyone who spots the reed can take a picture and add its location to a map. The group is also planning to point out the plant along the Highway 400 corridor and held a demonstration in Honey Harbour last weekend on how difficult it is to uproot.