“There’s two kinds of lakes in the South: them that’s got giant salvinia and them that’s about to have giant salvinia.” Caddo Lake is the only natural lake in Texas, but its delicate ecosystem is threatened by a seemingly unstoppable invasive species of floating fern: giant salvinia.
A Quick Q&A with the team behind There’s Something in the Water:
How did you learn about this issue and what gave you the idea of animating the interviews in order to communicate the issue of giant salvinia?
Shannon S. Wynne, who is also a producer of the film (and financed it) has a long-time second home at Caddo Lake and has watched as the Salvinia has become a permanent fixture on the lake. He’s seen first hand, over the years, how it affects the lake’s businesses, recreation, ecosystem, and local community. The infestation has been written about lots, and documented in media but he was eager to share the issue in short film format.
How is the salvinia problem today? Has the community been able to effectively manage the salvinia?
As Laura Ashley states in the film, they understand eradication is unlikely and they will be faced with managing salvinia, possible forever. When there has not been a hard freeze (or a few) during the winter (which is more and more often) salvinia takes over the lake. During years where freezing weather has occurred enough, the infestation is not as bad (but still present).
What do you hope the DCEFF audience will take away from the film? and/or What are some additional thoughts about the film that you would like to share with the DCEFF audience?
Our film has a couple of main messages. One is the specific issue of the Giant Salvinia and Caddo Lake Organizations and Texas Parks and Wildlife efforts to manage it. The other is the general message of the potentially catastrophic effect of introducing non-native species into an environment. That can mean plants, tress, grasses, ground cover, and even floral. When we bring in something that doesn’t belong and it reproduces there is no telling what toll it will take on an ecosystem.