We’ve been traveling to Cobbosseecontee Lake for 25 years. Other families we know have been fishing here for generations as well. We all appreciate that the lake is gorgeous and home to some of the best bass fishing in the state. However, the recent discovery of Eurasian watermilfoil in the lake has many concerned. If milfoil is not controlled, it can negatively impact the recreational use of the lake for everyone who enjoys Cobbossee.

Some who live in the area say bass fishermen don’t care. As a bass fisherman, I know that cannot be further from the truth; we all have to do our part to protect the lake. We all have to embrace the responsibility to stay away from yellow buoys and other markers that indicate the presence of milfoil. And it’s not just fishermen who have to be alert. Anyone in a boat, jet ski, kayak, and even swimmers can unknowingly spread milfoil if they get too close to these infested areas. Even the smallest fragment of a plant caught on a boat or other gear can re-root in the lake, or be carried to other lakes.

We can stop the spread of milfoil, and protect our aquatic life and the sustainability of our lakes if we all do our part. All of us who use the lake must clean, drain, and dry our boats before they go in and when they come out of the lake. And we know it’s best to use the public launches in Winthrop and Monmouth, where trained inspectors will doublecheck our boats, trailers, and gear and remove any invasive plants. We deeply appreciate the work of the Cobbosseecontee Lake Association, Friends of Cobbossee Watershed, and Maine DEP for their tireless stewardship of this magnificent natural resource.

Another important reality is the economic impact fisherman and all other water recreation enthusiasts bring to the small and large businesses alike throughout the lakes region of the beautiful state of Maine. If the milfoil goes unchecked, it threatens the healthy weed growth that not only bass but other fish species rely on to survive.

We hope everyone who considers Cobbossee a treasure, whether from out of town or a local resident, will take seriously their role in the sustainability of this incredible resource.

Mark and Coleen Fabrizi

Burdett, N.Y.

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