Hyacinth take over Dersley dam

Ward councillor Ramesh Sheodin holds a dead hyacinth in his hand and says it is an unhealthy situation for the fish in the dam.

According to the residents the plant can often cover an entire lake or dam if it is not bought under control.

Ward councillor Ramesh Sheodin sympathises with the frustrated residents who are complaining about the invasion of the water hyacinth.

He feels the growth of all the hyacinth should be treated as soon as possible as the plant rapidly spreads.

Read: Clean-up will cause odours

“The problem is that people use the dam to fish and there are usually younger children there as well.

“If they fall into the dam covered in hyacinth, nobody will be able to see or rescue them,” says Sheodin.

When the matter was reported to the metro previously, the weed buster team used poison to kill some of the hyacinth at the edge of the dam.

“This seems to be an on-going problem and needs to be looked at urgently before the plant takes over the entire dam.

“The metro only needs to leave one or two plants which will start the growth cycle again and I believe the plant multiplies fast,” says Sheodin.

Read: Hyacinth update

Low oxygen conditions develop beneath water hyacinth mats and create good breeding conditions for mosquitoes.

Despite questions sent to the metro a week ago, no comment was forthcoming by the time of publishing.

Water hyacinth, Eichornia crassipes, is known as the most productive plant on earth and forms dense mats and has a light-blue to violet flower.

The plant is a glossy green and the leathery leaf blades are up to 20cm long and 5-15cm wide and are attached to petioles that are often spongy-inflated.

Water hyacinth are seen as a severe environmental problem in dams as they spread rapidly.

Anna Robertson

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