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Lowering of Capitol Lake for screen replacement work postponed to end of July

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The Department of Enterprise Service has postponed plans to lower Capitol Lake to replace screens until the end of July to protect bats who rely more heavily on the lake as a food source in June and July when pups are nursing.

A contractor hired by Enterprise Services was scheduled to lower the lake by 2 feet on June 26 for work that would occur June 27 and 28. The work will replace the screens between Capitol Lake's mitigation ponds and the main lake. The screens are needed to reduce risk of Eurasian Watermilfoil fragments spreading from the ponds into the lake.

After Enterprise Services announced plans for lowering the lake, the agency received notification that bats are currently nursing their young and lowering the lake could have a negative impact on the flightless pups. Enterprise Services consulted with the Department of Fish and Wildlife who recommended the work be postponed to the end of July when the bat pups stop nursing and begin to fly.

Enterprise Services has an ongoing Hydraulic Project Approval for maintenance work on Capitol Lake, issued by the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife. Replacing the screens to reduce risk of Eurasian Watermilfoil fragments spreading to the lake is included under that permit.

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