Collaborative Funding Makes It Possible to Restore 17 Acres of Wetlands

LAKE TAHOE, Calif./Nev. – The USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit (LTBMU), in partnership with the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA), has begun the largest invasive plant removal project at Lake Tahoe, the LTBMU said today. This new project will remove 17 acres of invasive plants in the Taylor and Tallac creeks and marshes as part of a comprehensive restoration of one of the last natural wetlands in the Lake Tahoe Basin. Left unchecked, aquatic invasive plants can have devastating effects on Tahoe’s ecosystem and recreational resources.

“Invasive plant eradication projects have typically been measured in single acres,” said Sarah Muskopf, Aquatic Biologist with the Forest Service. “Using new technologies, including larger mats, reduces the cost of implementation and allows us to meet restoration objectives more efficiently.”

Crews are staking large tarps known as bottom barriers to the bottom of the Tallac Marsh and hope to have all the tarps in place by early 2022. Bottom barriers starve invasive weeds such as Eurasian watermilfoil of sunlight and are commonly used in the Tahoe Basin to control infestations.

“Wetlands improve our region’s natural resiliency in the face of climate change by filtering runoff and other pollutants. The restoration of these marshes pays dividends in keeping the lake clear and improving wildlife habitat,” said Kat McIntyre, forest health program manager with TRPA.

This project falls under the Lake Tahoe Environmental Improvement Program (EIP), an unparalleled collaboration working to achieve the environmental goals of the region. Funding is provided by federal Lake Tahoe Restoration Act allocations as well as $100,000 in private contributions from the Tahoe Fund.

“We are thrilled to be able to support this absolutely critical invasive plant removal project thanks to the support of the Merrill Family Foundation,” said Amy Berry, CEO of the Tahoe Fund. “It is inspiring to see our public agency partners take on a project of this size as they continue to tackle this ongoing threat to Tahoe’s water quality.”

The Forest Service asks recreators to use caution when walking, snowshoeing, or cross-country skiing in these areas as the mats are very slippery when wet or covered with snow. Also, please respect the fencing around the project for public safety and to help ensure the project is successful. The project will not impede access to Kiva and Baldwin beaches and is anticipated to last through 2024.


Photo caption: Installation of bottom barriers is underway at Taylor and Tallac marshes as part of the largest aquatic invasive plant removal project at Lake Tahoe. Photo credit: Tahoe Fund.

Assets for Media Use


Media Contacts:
Lisa Herron, USDA Forest Service, 530-721-3898
Jeff Cowen, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, 775-589-5278
Jess Weaver, JVP Communications for the Tahoe Fund, 530-448-6981

The mission of the U.S. Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world. Public lands the Forest Service manages contribute more than $13 billion to the economy each year through visitor spending alone. Those same lands provide 20 percent of the nation’s clean water supply, a value estimated at $7.2 billion per year. The agency has either a direct or indirect role in stewardship of about 80 percent of the 850 million forested acres within the U.S., of which 100 million acres are urban forests where most Americans live. USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender.

The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency leads the cooperative effort to preserve, restore, and enhance the unique natural and human environment of the Lake Tahoe Region, while improving local communities, and people’s interactions with our irreplaceable environment.

The Tahoe Fund is a nonprofit founded in 2010 to support environmental improvement projects that restore lake clarity, promote sustainable recreation, create healthier forests, improve transportation and inspire greater stewardship of the region. Through the generous support of donors, the Tahoe Fund has leveraged more than $3 million in private funds to secure more than $50 million in public funds for more than 60 environmental projects. The projects include new sections of the Lake Tahoe Bikeway, restoration of watersheds, removal of aquatic invasive species, forest health projects, public beach improvements, and stewardship programs. Learn more at