Herbicide spraying began Monday in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to control water hyacinth, an invasive water weed that has exploded in the region over the past nine months.
The California Department of Boating and Waterways began the spraying program in a zone extending east and south of Medford Island, and also along the San Joaquin River as far as Friant Dam.
Spraying will not begin in the north Delta, from about Franks Tract north to Sacramento, until June 1 to protect Delta smelt, a threatened native fish species.
The agency is spraying the herbicides 2,4,D and glyphosate from boats, under the terms of a five-year permit granted March 13 by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Contact The Bee's Matt Weiser at (916) 321-1264. Follow him on Twitter @matt_weiser.