Understanding How The Eco-Harvester Pulls & Skims Aquatic Plants
Conceptually speaking, it is easy to understand that the Eco-Harvester “pulls” aquatic vegetation by the roots. But how does it actually do it…pull aquatic vegetation by the root system you ask?
It is a good question and the answer is tied to the reason why the Eco-Harvester is patent protected. You’ve seen the Eco-Harvester pull aquatic vegetation or skim floating weed mats and algae blooms in the numerous videos listed on our website at www.ecoharvester.net or www.weedersdigest.com but the objective in developing the Eco-Harvester was for harvesting Eurasion Milfoil. Fortunately for everyone it can handle removing most underwater weeds that are close enough to the surface.
Eurasian Milfoil is one of many invasive aquatic plants that plagues many freshwater lakes throughout North America. Our goal at Weeders Digest was to develop a harvester that could effectively remove this invasive yet still be an affordable option for lake home owners, lake associations, and municipalities alike.
We were successful in reaching our goal however what we didn’t factor into the equation is that the Eco-Harvester also successfully pulled most every other submersed aquatic plant as well like Hydrilla, Torpedo grass, Sargassum, etc! The other unforeseen benefit would be that it can also skim floating weed mats, floaters and fragments, duck weed, and algae blooms.
Even though the Eco-Harvester is 96 % effective at pulling most any submersed plant by the roots, it is even better at skimming because you can skim at a faster speed then harvesting vegetation which is why its so much more efficient and productive than other skimmers!
The blue drum you see on the front of the Eco-Harvester is what generates what we refer to as “Dynamic Flow Intake” which basically creates water current that “draws-in” the aquatic vegetation to the roller and conveyor mounted offset below the drum. The dynamic flow created by the drum enables the bottom roller and conveyor to “grab” the aquatic plants and “pull” similar to how the old fashioned washers squeegeed clothes through the rollers.
What makes this technology so unique is that the roller/conveyor only needs to reach down and “grab” the plant in order to pull it by the root. Even though the Eco-Harvester’s drum goes down to 4’ water depth, it can still operate in deeper water depths to be effective. Keep in mind that harvesting is usually done in water depths from 1’ to 6-8’, where aquatic weeds can be problematic. For example, if you are harvesting in 6’ water depth and the submersed vegetation is growing 4’ up from the bottom, then the drum/roller/conveyor only needs to go down 2’ in order to grab the plant.
The fact that the Eco-Harvester grabs and pulls plants by the roots eliminates the issue of leaving cut weed fragments and floaters behind that traditional cutting harvesters create. This is an issue because the floaters and fragments left behind and regrow in other parts of the lake which in essence spreads invasive vegetation instead of eliminating it.
Lake Weed Skimmer
If you want to use the Eco-Harvester to skim algae or other floating weeds and debris the operator simply needs to raise the drum out of the water and lower the bottom roller/conveyor about 6-12 inches below the water surface.
The dynamic flow that the drum creates for harvesting/pulling isn’t needed for skimming because you don’t need additional flow, the intake roller working in unison with the conveyor create more than enough intake flow for skimming. Because of this the operator can increase the speed from 1-2 mph for harvesting and pulling to 4-6 mph to skim algae and other floating weeds and debris.
The question that is always asked is how much can the Eco-Harvester harvest or skim in an hour or day? For pulling aquatic vegetation a good rule of thumb is between 1-1.5 acres/hour and 1.5-3 acres/hour for skimming algae and any other floaters. The variables that affect productivity include type of plant harvested, operator skill level, and offload site for unloading a full load of aquatic vegetation.
For instance if you intend to pull vegetation the operator can be far more effective and productive if there is a transport barge, large boat or dumpsite in close proximity of the harvesting operation. In other words, if the operator has to travel 1 mile to offload a full bunk of weeds, then productivity is greatly reduced. However, the operator could keep harvesting if the dumpsite is close to where the operator is harvesting which greatly increases productivity.
To learn more about the Eco-Harvester call toll-free @ 877-224-4899.