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February 28, 2006

The Southwest Florida Water Management District will be treating water hyacinths and water lettuce on portions of the Braden River March 6-9. The sites are located south of State Road 70 in Manatee County.

Treatment involves the spot application of the aquatic herbicide Reward to scattered infestations. Treatment areas will be posted with warning signs displaying treatment dates and applicable restrictions. Restrictions on Reward include no livestock watering for one day, no irrigation of crops for five days or lawns and ornamental plants for one day. Treated river water should not be used for drinking for two days. This does not apply to tap or well water.

Water hyacinth is a troublesome aquatic plant from South America that was brought to Florida in the late 1800s. It is a fast-growing plant that expands quickly.

Water lettuce is a troublesome floating aquatic plant from South America that was first discovered in Florida in 1765. It is considered one of the worst weeds in the subtropical and tropical regions of the world and can double its population in less than three weeks.

If these aquatic plants are not controlled, recreational activities, navigation, flood control and fish and wildlife populations may be negatively impacted. The management of these plants on the Braden River is a cooperative effort between the District and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

For more information, please call the District at 352-796-7211 or 1-800-423-1476.

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