Hard to kill: Aquatic plant found in lake after long fight

October 26, 2019 GMT

BRANDON, Miss. (AP) — A yearlong fight has failed to eradicate an invasive aquatic plant from a Mississippi lake.

Officials announced Friday that they’ve found giant salvinia remaining in the Pelahatchie Bay area of Ross Barnett Reservoir, north of Jackson. The fast-growing aquatic fern is native to Brazil. It can form thick mats that choke aquatic life and hamper swimming and boating.

The Pearl River Water Valley Supply District last winter closed Pelahatchie Bay to boating, using flamethrowers and other methods to combat salvinia.

District General Manager John Sigman tells local news outlets the plant was spotted this week when lake levels were raised back to normal.

Officials have already sprayed herbicide and deployed booms to contain the plant. Directors on Friday closed part of Pelahatchie Bay to boating to prevent the plant’s spread.