Part of lake closed to fight invasive plant reopens to boats

May 2, 2019

BRANDON, Miss. (AP) — Officials are reopening boating in part of a Mississippi lake, as they continue fighting an invasive aquatic plant.

Giant salvinia was found last year in the Pelahatchie Bay area of Ross Barnett Reservoir, north of Jackson. The fast-growing aquatic fern is native to Brazil. It can form thick mats that choke aquatic life and hamper swimming and boating.

The Pearl River Valley Water Supply District in October closed Pelahatchie Bay to boating. The district said Thursday it will reopen about half the bay on May 14, inspecting boats as they enter and leave at one boat ramp.

Water levels will be kept low, with officials saying that will help kill remaining giant salvinia.

Boat travel between Pelahatchie Bay and the rest of the lake remains banned.