Aquatic Invasive Species Management Resources

Photo by Rich King, Lycott Environmental


Management of aquatic invasive species may be subject to one or more permits. The following information can be used as general guidance to determine whether a permit will be required for your project.

Hand-harvesting of Aquatic Invasive Plants

The APA developed a flyer, Hand Harvesting of Aquatic Plants, which provides guidance for individual landowners  on how to go about managing nuisance growths of aquatic plants interfering with recreational access to a waterway.

A permit is not required for the removal of wetland plants, including their roots, under the following specific circumstances:

  • The removal is conducted in open water less than 2 meters (6 feet) deep;
  • The removal is conducted entirely by hand;
  • The removal leaves at least 200 square feet of contiguous indigenous wetland in the immediate vicinity;
  • The removal does not involve taking more than 1000 square feet of indigenous wetland plants;
  • The removal does not involve the application of pesticides or matting;
  • The removal is not part of a larger harvesting program by individuals or groups;
  • No rare or endangered species are removed or disturbed; and
  • The removal is not associated with any other activity involving wetlands, including dredging, filling, or other action regulated under Section 578.3(n) of Agency regulations.

Permits for Aquatic Invasive Species Management Activities

The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) administers the Freshwater Wetlands Act within the Adirondack Park. Activities which influence the function or benefits derived from freshwater wetlands are considered regulated activities and require prior approval by the APA. In this context, APA jurisdiction extends to submerged wetland communities (deep water marsh) up to 2 meters (6.6 feet) in depth. Management of plants or animals within this shoreline area is subject to APA review and permitting.

A permit from the APA is required for any activities which go beyond the hand harvesting parameters outlined above. These larger scale activities may include suction- harvesting, the installation of benthic mats, lake draw downs, and chemical and biological controls. These management techniques have the potential to affect larger areas (possibly whole plant communities) and may result in profound changes to an ecosystem. The activities also have the potential to impact other users of the water resource. As a result, applicants should seek the guidance of professionals (e.g. aquatic biologists, certified lake managers, etc.) who are experienced in aquatic plant identification, AIS management,  or lake management. A pre-management survey is also required to delineate the location and boundaries of target species and to identify and record the location(s) of any protected plant species.

To learn more about the Adirondack Park Agency’s permits for aquatic invasive species management, visit the Adirondack Park Agency website or call 518-891-4050.

Project Planning:

  • NYS Non-native Plant and Animal Species Invasiveness Assessments can be used to evaluate the threat level posed by various invasive species present in the Adirondack region and across New York State.
  • APIPP’s Interactive Invasive Species Distribution Map provides detailed regional invasive species distribution data and associated information such as when an infestation was found and if it is actively being managed
  • iMapInvasives is a statewide database that can be used to assess the distribution of any invasive species targeted for management. Knowing the location of other nearby infestations and whether your lake is connected to other invaded waterways will help determine project success.
  • The Invasive Plant Management Decision Analysis Tool can be used to set realistic objectives and goals before engaging in an invasive plant management project.

Aquatic Invasive Species Management: