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Drawdown planned for Lake Martin - KATC.com | Continuous News Coverage | Acadiana-Lafayette

Drawdown planned for Lake Martin

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Lake Martin Lake Martin

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has scheduled a drawdown for vegetation control on Lake Martin in St. Martin Parish. The drawdown is scheduled to begin after the Labor Day holiday on Tuesday, September 5, 2017.

The lake level will be lowered 2 to 3 feet below pool stage, a statement from the department indicates. This level is required to successfully dry out aquatic nuisance vegetation, officials say.  The lake is scheduled to return to pool stage by January 31, 2018, by pumping in water from Ruth Canal.  Filling the lake at this time will ensure adequate water levels for spring-time spawning, officials say. 

This action is a necessary component of LDWF’s integrated management plan developed to control overabundant aquatic vegetation growth and to improve the Lake Martin sport fishery. It will also enhance the buttonbush and bald cypress forest regrowth in the bird rookery, officials say. 

While the drawdown may impact navigation in parts of the southern end of the lake for duck hunters in late fall and winter, it is anticipated that hunting and fishing on the majority of the lake will not be affected. The lake will not be closed to fishing during this time, officials say. 

Other recent control efforts include regular herbicide applications for floating and emergent vegetation, and the release of 2,680 triploid grass carp in November 2015 to control the growth of submerged vegetation. Herbicide spraying will be conducted during the drawdown in accessible areas, according to the LDWF. 

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