Corps plans to restore lake with native American Water Willow

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MODOC, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) -- Aquatic vegetation at Clarks Hill Lake has declined over the past few years. Declining vegetation is the result of carp being added to the lake to eradicate Hydrilla, an invasive aquatic plant that contains a harmful cyanobacteria that infects waterfowl and kills Bald Eagles.

The carp have done their job and reduced the amount of hydrilla, but now there are few aquatic plants left. To help fix that, the Corps is growing American Water Willow to plant across the Lake.

Evan Brashier, a conservation biologist for the US Army Corps of Engineers, says, "it's a native species here which naturally occurred in the river system and creek runs".

Adding this vegetation will also help improve the quality of fish. Brashier added, "it will create immense cover and create food opportunities for fish species at the lake".

The best part about the American Water Willow is that the carp do not eat it, so the plant will be able to thrive.

The Greenbrier High School fishing team also helped the Corps obtain a grant to pay for the potting soil in this project.

The Corps has already planted 200 American Water Willow plants at the Lake this summer and will add an additional 2,000 plants in September.