LINCOLN CITY — The Devils Lake Water Improvement District (DLWID) has recently completed a vegetation control survey, and results showed an increase in Parrot Feather within the lake. DLWID urges all residents along the lake to watch for, and help prevent this invasive species from spreading.
Parrot Feather, also known as Brazilian watermilfoil, is an aquatic invasive species native to South America. It grows in slow-moving streams and shorelines of lakes and can survive a wide range of water levels and soils. Reported sightings in the Pacific Northwest began in the 1940s, and it has now found its way into many slow-moving natural water bodies throughout western Oregon. Due to its attractive and easily cultivated nature, it is widely used for aquariums and water gardens. Like many other introduced invasive species, it made its way out of domestic settings and into natural water bodies.
The species has a small, lime-green tree structure. The leaves have a feather-like structure and typically have four to six around the stem. Parrot Feather can grow up to one foot out of the water, which makes it easy to spot and remove. DLWID urges all residents to be watchful and help with the removal of the species.
“Parrot feather, at this time, does not pose any immediate harm to the health of the lake,” said Josh Brainerd, DLWID district manager. “However, it does impede water flow, which can cause flooding. It can also outcompete with other native plants, which reduce dissolved oxygen levels over time.”
DLWID asks anyone who sees this plant floating near docks and shorelines to pick it up and remove it from the waterway completely, and destroy it. Composting is an good way to ensure the plant does not return to the environment.