Ritchie: $50,000 to Combat Black Lake Weeds

Grant to Boost One of New York’s Top Fishing Destination

State Senator Patty Ritchie announced that she's secured a $50,000 grant in the State Budget to combat invasive species in Black Lake, one of the North Country’s top fishing and tourist attractions.

“Black Lake has repeatedly been ranked as one of the top fishing destinations in New York State and the United States by fishing and sportsmen’s publications,” said Senator Ritchie. “Every year, it draws thousands of families to Northern New York, generating an estimated $7 million in tourism dollars a year. I have been working closely with sportsmen, the St. Lawrence County Soil and Water District and local officials to reduce the problems plaguing one of our region’s great natural treasures.”

Eurasian Milfoyle, a non-native nuisance weed, forms dense mats of vegetation that shades out native species. The heavy weed growth disrupts the lake’s water flow, hurts water quality, reduces boating, fishing and swimming in Black Lake.

Black Lake, often referred to as "Nature's Fish Hatchery," is the largest of the Indian River lakes. The 20 mile long lake, with over 60 miles of shoreline and numerous islands, offers anglers a variety of ideal fish habitats from rocky points and shoals, to sandbars, weed beds, shallows, and deep water up to 40 feet.
The lake's most dominant game fish are the smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, northern pike, crappie, and once again walleye.

“Black Lake is one of the region’s economic engines,” said Senator Ritchie. "It generates jobs and business opportunities for people in Hammond, Morristown, Oswegatchie, Macomb, Rossie, DePeyster and across the North Country.”

The dense weed canopies shade and crowd out native vegetation, creating pools of stagnant water, damaging fishing habitat.

Black Lake has been lauded by Fish & Game Finder Magazine, New York Fishing and Hunting News, New York Game and Fish, and Sports Afield Magazine which rated it one of the top 20 “Best of the Best” for bass lakes in 2002.