Palike finds way to check growth of weeds in City lakes

Palike finds way to check growth of weeds in City lakes

The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) says it has found a way to control the growth of aquatic weeds, the wild plants which pose a big challenge to revival of the City’s vanishing lakes. 

In this regard, it is planning a tie-up with the Directorate of Weed Science Research (DWSR), Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh. The idea took shape recently when Mayor B S Satyanarayana and Palike officers attended a presentation by the DWSR Principal Scientist, Sushil Kumar, on ‘Management of Aquatic Weeds.’ 

The presentation suggested measures such as chemical management, biocontrol and chemical control integration for the control of the aquatic weed menace. Kumar maintained that the manual removal of weeds would not help much in reviving the lakes as they grow back at a fast pace. “Controlling their growth is the only viable solution,” he added. 

Satyanarayana described the measures as “good and cost-effective” and said they would be implemented after discussions were held with Commissioner M Lakshminarayana and the BBMP gave its approval. “The Palike spends lakhs of rupees on manually removing the weeds from lakes but has not adopted any measures to check their growth,” he told Deccan Herald, recalling the presentation. The mayor, however, said the estimated cost of adopting such measures in each lakes had not been looked into yet. The BBMP maintains almost 55 lakes. 

According to Palike sources, Rs 50,000 to Rs one lakh is spent on one-time removal of weeds. The cost includes payment to workers. Kumar, who has surveyed Allalasandra, Puttenahalli, Ramagondanahalli, Sampigehalli and Yelahanka lakes — all in northern parts of Bangalore — said: “While Ramagondanahalli lake is infested with water hyacinth and Ipomoea, Puttenahalli lake is full of alligator weeds called ‘Typha angusta weeds’. Allalasandra lake is infested with alligator weeds and water hyacinth.” 

Former president of Indian Society of Weed Science and Board Member of Horticulture Department, T V Muniyappa, who also attended the presentation, said weeds were dangerous as they lead to mosquito accumulation in lakes, fish vegetation among others. 

To begin with, the aquatic weed control solutions will be adopted in lakes under the Palike limits and extended later to water bodies maintained by the Bangalore Development Authority, the Lake Development Authority and the forest and minor irrigation departments. 

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