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Invasive Waterflea Sampling

Spiny waterflea specimens collected from Sacandaga Lake in Speculator, NY on Wednesday, July 24th. This invasive zooplankton was confirmed in Sacandaga Lake by NYS DEC officials in 2010.

APIPP Aquatic Invasive Species Project Coordinator, Meghan Johnstone, has been testing the efficacy of APIPP’s new sampling protocol for finding the invasive zooplankton, spiny and fishhook waterfleas (Bythotrephes longimanus and Cercopagis pengoi, respectively). Spiny waterfleas have been detected in five Adirondack lakes: Great Sacandaga Lake, Stewarts Bridge Reservoir, Lake George, Peck Lake, and Sacandaga Lake. Fishhook waterfleas have not yet been detected in the Adirondacks. Meghan plans to sample from several Adirondack lakes this summer to check for spiny and fishhook waterfleas and to make sure that the new protocol will be well-suited for volunteer implementation.

Meghan Johnstone sifting through our zooplankton collection cup in search of spiny waterfleas near Sacandaga Lake.
Caitlin Stewart and Lenny Croote from the Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District help APIPP staff sample for spiny waterfleas in Sacandaga Lake on Wednesday, July 24th.
Zooplankton caught with our plankton net in Upper Saranac Lake – No spiny or fishhook waterfleas detected!
APIPP’s Summer Educator, Billy Martin, pulls up our plankton net on Upper Saranac Lake.
Billy Martin checking plankton collection cup for spiny and fishhook waterfleas.
Meghan Johnstone demonstrating invasive waterflea sampling on Upper Saranac Lake.
Guy Middleton, Lake Manager for the Upper Saranac Lake Foundation, arranged for APIPP staff to meet with the Aquatic Invasive Management dive team for a brief demonstration of Eurasian water-milfoil management and removal. Aquatic Invasive Management (AIM) has been managing Eurasian water-milfoil on Upper Saranac Lake for several years with great success. More information on AIM can be found at
While out on Upper Saranac Lake, Guy Middleton identifies and marks Eurasian water-milfoil sites with a buoy, which are later managed and removed by the Aquatic Invasive Management dive team.

Special thanks to Guy Middleton, Caitlin Stewart, and Lenny Croote for helping APIPP conduct the invasive waterflea sampling on Upper Saranac Lake and Sacandaga Lake!

For more information on spiny waterflea, please visit

For more information on fishhook waterflea, please visit
Remember…clean boats mean clean waters. Don’t forget to drain your bilge and clean your equipment to help stop the spread of invasives like spiny and fishhook waterfleas!

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