NPS - National Park Service

06/14/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/14/2021 11:42

Voyageurs National Park Staff Manage Cattail Mat in Sullivan Bay

June 14, 2021
Contact:Tawnya Schoewe
Contact:Reid Plumb, 218-283-6694

On May 27 a floating cattail mat temporarily blocked off the Ash River navigational channel in Sullivan Bay. The mat was pushed to the side of Ash River by local business owners and the public where it was staked in place by Voyageurs National Park staff to prevent further movement. On Wednesday, June 16, park staff will de-anchor the mat and push it back into park waters in Sullivan Bay where it can be secured until it can be treated and removed later this year.

Hybrid cattails have invaded approximately 500-acres of wetlands in Voyageurs, displacing native communities of plants such as wild rice, sedges, rushes, and native cattail. The hybrid cattail can grow into floating mats that can break free and cause navigational hazards, cause damage to shoreline infrastructure, and proliferate the spread of the invasive species. This long-term project will improve fish and wildlife habitat, reduce the probability of floating mat detachment, and help restore wetlands to a more diverse, natural state. More information on the project can be found at:

This project is funded by a variety of organizations including the Outdoor Heritage Fund as part of the Clean Water, Land, and Legacy Amendment, Minnesota Environment and Natural Resource Trust Fund, Initiative Foundation, Voyageurs Conservancy, National Park Foundation, Clean Air Act Settlement Fund, and the National Park Service.