A fundraiser has been set for Sept. 26 to help defray the costs of raising weevils in the fight against giant salvinia on Lake Bistineau.
Sponsored by the Lake Bistineau News community, the meet and greet fish fry will be at 1 p.m. at Our Place Bar and Grill, located at 300 Cryers Camp Road, in Elm Grove. Fish plates will be $8, and the fundraiser will include a live auction, silent bake auction, a 50/50 cash giveaway, raffle, door prizes, fun and games and entertainment.

“This is one of many fundraisers that we plan on doing to take matters into our own hands,” Weldon Thomas, founder of the Lake Bistineau News community, said. “We cannot just wait for the lake to fix itself. Pete Camp has started the weevil project with the help of the Bistineau Task Force, Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, and we want to do our part. We need the community to step up and help as well.”

The money will be used for supplies like Berlese funnels, what’s used to count weevils, microscopes and other items. It will also go towards hiring an entomologist, an insect professional.

While they have several items already donated for the fundraiser, such as a Dean acoustic guitar and case, Mud Zappa 50-gallon salvinia spray and Amsec safe, gift cards and Lake Bistineau prints, more items are needed.

Volunteers are needed as well.

The Red River Waterway Commission donated roughly 36,000 weevils that were transported to Lake Bistineau where they were deposited into areas cordoned off with booms. One of those areas is at the camp of Pete Camp, member at large of the Bistineau Task Force.

It’s located in the bar pits so the current lake drawdown doesn’t affect the project, Thomas said.

“If we use all methods available, maybe we can control the giant salvinia to where we can have the lake open year round,” he said.
As of now, there are three test areas at Camp’s Lake Bistineau camp where the weevils were introduced: one with just weevils, one with salvinia, weevils, larvae and eggs and the control group which has no weevils.

“The idea for this project is to test the effectiveness of the salvinia weevil in Lake Bistineau during the growing season,” according to a Trailblazer news release. “The project team will monitor the release sites on a regular basis; hopefully new colonies will be established in the coming weeks.”

Thomas says state Rep. Gene Reynolds, along with other running politicians, will be on hand to discuss the issue.

To volunteer, or to make a donation for the event or cash or prizes, Thomas can be contacted through the Lake Bistineau News Facebook page, www.facebook.com/groups/lakebistineau