Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Pythons Eating Native Mammals in the Everglades

Michael E. Dorcas along with fellow authors of a recent study are reporting "severe apparent declines in mammal populations that coincide temporally and spatially with the proliferation of pythons in Everglades National Park (ENP). Before 2000, mammals were encountered frequently during nocturnal road surveys within ENP. In contrast, road surveys totaling 56,971 km from 2003–2011 documented a 99.3% decrease in the frequency of raccoon observations, decreases of 98.9% and 87.5% for opossum and bobcat observations, respectively, and failed to detect rabbits. Road surveys also revealed that these species are more common in areas where pythons have been discovered only recently and are most abundant outside the python's current introduced range."
Read this article in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Video of Everglades biologists hunting and capturing a python.

Monday, January 23, 2012

10 Ways to Observe NISAW - National Invasive Species Awareness Week

Ten Ways to Observe National Invasive Species Awareness Week
  1. Do some research
  2. Join in an eradication effort
  3. Become a citizen scientist
  4. Visit a garden, park or nature center
  5. Read a book
  6. Donate
  7. Start a garden
  8. Legislate
  9. Take the invasive species challenge
  10. Spread awareness
Click here to read the article in NISAW

Friday, January 20, 2012

Grassroots Session at NISAW: Webcast

The 2nd Grassroots Invasive Species Forum and Webcast will be held on March 1, 2012 during National Invasive Species Awareness Week (NISAW) in Washington, DC.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Ban on Import or Transport of Four Giant Snakes that Threaten the Everglades

"The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has finalized a rule that would ban the importation and interstate transportation of four nonnative constrictor snakes that threaten the Everglades and other sensitive ecosystems across the United States, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced today."
Read the Press release from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Burmese python
image by Bob DeGross, National Park Service, Bugwood.org

Monday, January 9, 2012

New Years Resolutions: Simple Measures to Stop Invasive Species

A great idea in the Maui News today suggest ways we can each make a difference in the fight against invasive species each month. The article focuses on what to can be done on Maui but the suggestions can easily be adapted for any part of the United States.
  • January-check your backyard and remove any invasives
  • February-National Invasive Species Awareness Week: learn about the invasives in your area
  • March-buy local: using locally grown products including firewood reduces the chance of moving pests to a new area
  • April-clean your gear: hunting, fishing, hiking, biking, four wheeling, boating, diving 
  • May-volunteer: contact local parks, Master Gardeners or Department of Natural Resources
  • June-survey your trees for invasive pest damage
  • July-travel smart: check twice and have proper inspections for produce and wood
  • August-take a hike but survey along the way for invasive plants and report them
  • September-be neighborly: a neighborhood group working towards controlling invasives will be much more effective than one person alone
  • October-go native in your yard: plant some of the many beautiful native species
  • November-eat an invasive: feral hogs, lionfish, Asian carp are just a few of the many edible invasive species
  • December-use an invasive tree as a Christmas tree or as a yule-tide log in your fireplace
To read the original article by Lissa Strohecker in the Maui News.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

More People Power with AmeriCorp Teams

AmeriCorp's National Civilian Conservation Corps (NCCC) team of a dozen young people volunteered at Shaw Nature Reserve from mid-November to mid-December. This is the fourth year the 2,400-acre Nature Reserve has had an AmeriCorps team volunteer.
Read the article in emissourian.com about the work accomplished by the AmeriCorps team as they whacked bush honeysuckle and invasive privet shrubs at Shaw Nature Reserve.