Local News

Hydrilla surfaces in Kerr Lake

Posted August 4, 2011

— A fast-growing aquatic weed is causing headaches for some property owners along Kerr Lake.

The weed hydrilla has been a nuisance in Kerr Lake in recent years but sprang up with a vengeance around docks and shores last year, said Paul McKenzie, agricultural agent for Vance and Warren counties.

Hydrilla is concentrated in the lake from north of Clarksville, Va., to around Nutbush in Vance County.

Hydrilla can cover the surface of small bodies of water, like coves and shallow areas along the shore. The weed's stems can grow up to 25 feet long, making it impossible to boat, swim or fish.

The invasive weed plagues lakes from Florida to Connecticut and west to California and Washington.

McKenzie said that Kerr Lake homeowners can have a professional treat it with the chemical Komeen.


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  • stonky Aug 4, 2011

    How about just dumping some roundup in the lake...That should get rid of it

  • jaydosse Aug 4, 2011

    I guess it is better to have Hydrilla as opposed to Godzilla - LOL

  • ncngwife Aug 4, 2011

    @andyhilton2 - Komeen is applied to the water and is quickly dissipated. Now, if you are the person working directly with the chemical in its undiluted form, it is a different situation than swimming in it when it is diluted and dissipated. Given what else may be in the water, I am not sure that the Komeen would be your biggest problem. Besides that, the people that apply the Komeen have special training to know how to safely apply the chemicals to prevent problems.

  • irishale Aug 4, 2011

    "Hydrilla is concentrated in the lake from north of Clarksville, Va., to around Nutbush in Vance County."

    That's over half of the lake...

  • ptaylor352 Aug 4, 2011

    Hydrilla may not be a horrible problem now, BUT it certainly can. I grew up in Florida in the 1960's and saw hydrilla blossom in some waters, such as Crystal River, to such an extent that you could unexpectantly run into a mass of plants while running at high speed and literally be stopped as though you'd run aground on a sandbar. It can fowl the prop to the point the engine is killed. -- Bass only love it when they can hide in it. But at it's worst there is nothing that can swim through it when it's a dozen feet thick and covering an area the size of a football field.

  • Hater like Darth Vader Aug 4, 2011


    Check the MSDS on Roundup. Copper is safer. If you look at the MSDS for any steel product it will say that it contains known carcinogens. You know anyway that got cut by steel that developed cancer?

  • Rebelyell55 Aug 4, 2011

    But.. But... think of the fishes.

  • tran Aug 4, 2011

    If WRAL reporters are looking for Hydrilla, try Hyco Lake up near Roxboro. Due to the power plants, that water stays tepid year round. Some coves are so grown up with it, you have to paddle in.

    Pouring chemicals on it will poison the lake.

  • jdtblueprint Aug 4, 2011

    PLEASE leave the hydrilla alone. The best duck hunting last year was on kerr lake and its because of the hydrilla. Once they killed all the hydrilla off lake gaston the ducks left. Now the place to go is kerr lake. There where thousands of ducks on kerr lake last year and expecting more this year. PLEASE LEAVE IT ALONE.

  • andyhilton2 Aug 4, 2011

    From the Komeen label:

    Corrosive to the respiratory system. May cause sensitization by inhalation. Exposure to decomposition products may cause a health hazard. Serious effects may be delayed following exposure. Corrosive to eyes. Causes burns. Toxic if swallowed. May cause burns to mouth, throat and stomach. Corrosive to the skin. Causes burns. May cause sensitization by skin contact.

    Sign me up.