Weed Watcher Program

Learn how you can help prevent the spread of invasive weeds in Massachusetts waters.


A key goal of DCR's Lakes and Ponds Program is to prevent further infestation of Massachusetts' lakes and ponds by invasive plants. We also work towards controlling and removing existing populations of invasive plants.

To meet this goal we have developed a program to train local lake groups to monitor their ponds for the presence of invasive plants and to develop a removal plan if an infestation is found. If a pioneer infestation of invasive plants is identified early, there is a greater chance that the plant can be eradicated before it becomes established in the lake or pond. Once invasive plants are established they are almost impossible to remove and very expensive to control. Invasive plants spread rapidly and form dense mats that can make boating, fishing and swimming impossible. As the recreational and aesthetic value of the lake declines, property values around the lake also decrease.

By monitoring your lake or pond you are taking an active role in ensuring the protection of your lake for the future.

Request a Weed Watcher Training

Lakes and Ponds Program staff will bring live plant specimens to the training location for a hands-on identification workshop.  Trainings are conducted at a time, date, and location of your choice but keep the following guidelines in mind: 

  • Location should be a public space (no private homes please). 
  • Dates for trainings should fall between the last week of May and the end of September. 
  • Trainings can be requested for any weekday during normal business hours or Monday through Thursday evenings beginning no later than 6:00 PM. 
  • Trainings typically last between two and three hours depending on the size of the group. 
  • Five to twenty participants is ideal.

Email jim.straub@state.ma.us or tom.flannery@state.ma.us to set up a training for your lake group.

Contact   for Weed Watcher Program

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