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  • Writer's picturemariagross

Found new plant, Common Duck-meal

Updated: Sep 18, 2023

On Sept 1st I started the patrol off near Boynton Island (grid #249/251) and had both zone 9 and 10 in front of me. Spotless sky, no wind, and clear view of the lake’s floor. I did not see any worrisome plants or animals.

After circling Boynton Island, I ventured into the cove just south of it. I was pleased to find a new aquatic plant that moves as a colony and is known as Duck-meal (pirodela polyrrhiza.) It is also called Common Duck-meal according to the site, Go Botany. I found it tucked way into the sheltered end of the cove (grid #252). The mass was made up tiny plants (1/8” in diameter) with no true stems, of a vibrant green, and could be quickly scattered by boat or wind. It is reported to be found usually in still or stagnant waters of small coves or wetlands. Common duck-meal is distinguished from the other duckweeds and water-meals by having thalli (leaves) that are red or reddish purple on the underside and have multiple roots hanging from them into the water. See photos below.

Continuing further south to grid #257 I crossed over to the west side of the lake and started north from grids #315, 316. I circled the next island north and at the tip of it was a Fresh Water Bryozoan at (#319.)

Zigzagging up to and along the south side of Near Isle I was struck that there was very little submerged or floating aquatic plant life to be found. That said, I did find a good number of individual floating blobs of Rivularia, a nontoxic form of Cyanobacteria we have seen in the lake over several seasons, but it does seem that I have found more of it this year, presenting just this way. Throughout the patrol I have also found more patches of Fresh Water Sponge on different size rocks and boulders than I have seen earlier in the season.

I crossed back over to the east shore from grid #335 to #238 and continued south to where I had put in.

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