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We need your help!  If you think you've seen an invasive species, please let us know by reporting it.

Hotline: 1-877-9-INFEST

Lake Whatcom 2012 Inventory Report

Program Overview 
Our monitoring program aims to ensure that new infestations are reported, confirmed, and responded to as soon as possible to minimize environmental and economic impacts resulting from an infestation.  

In September, 2012, the Whatcom County Noxious Weed Board, with assistance from the Washington State Department of Ecology and the City of Bellingham, completed an aquatic invasive species inventory of the littoral zone of Lake Whatcom.  The goals of the inventory were to establish a baseline of aquatic invasive species present in the lake and their distributions to assist in the development of aquatic invasive species response strategies.  The survey was conducted by boat over four days in August and September.  Submersed species were collected using a grab sampling method that involved throwing a weighted rake attached to a rope down to depths of 30 feet.  Emergent shoreline species were recorded based on visual observations of the shoreline.  No new aquatic invasive species or new Asian clam infestations were discovered as a result of this inventory.  Out of the 38 plant species that were found, 24 were native and 14 were introduced.  Out of the 14 introduced species found, 11 are shoreline or nearshore plants while the other three are submersed invasive species and include: fragrant water lily, Eurasian watermilfoil, and curly-leaf pondweed (2012 Lake Whatcom Inventory Report).

Lake Whatcom Management Program staff also continued to conduct shoreline surveys for Asian clams and to monitor existing infestations.  Also, in 2012, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Whatcom County Noxious Weed Board engaged in monitoring efforts for zebra/quagga mussels in Lake Whatcom.  No zebra/quagga mussels were detected through these activities in 2012.  

In 2013, the Aquatic Invasive Species Program plans to develop its capability to conduct more frequent lake monitoring events for zebra/quagga mussels and other aquatic invasive species in the lake.

The map below was created using information collected during the aquatic invasive species inventory conducted in 2012.  Several species of shoreline and submersed invasive plants that are found in Lake Whatcom are highlighted using various colors (click to enlarge).  

Lake Whatcom Aquatic Weed Map 2012

If you spend a lot of time in the watershed and are willing to assist with monitoring for aquatic invasive species, we are interested in hearing from you!  Contact: Teagan Ward,, or Laurel Baldwin,, for more information.
Report a Species
We need your help!  If you think you have found an invasive species, please let us know by reporting it using the hotline or reporting form below.

Hotline: 1-877-9-INFEST