Thursday, March 31, 2011

Ecological Dynamics Rap

This Ecological Dynamics Rap by two Antioch University students is great too.

You Just Have to See 'The Forest Pest Rap"

'The Forest Pest Rap', which was created to advertise the new FAO Guide re Forest Pests. "FAO Forestry Paper 164 - Guide to implementation of Phytosanitary Standards in Forestry" This is an important reference work that provides easy to understand information on International Standards for Phytosanitary measures (ISPM's) and how forest management practices can play a role in minimizing pest prevalence and spread. It is available in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish and can be freely downloaded.

People Will Protect What They Love

People will protect what they love. And if you love nature, then you will love this.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Seeking Miscanthus Invading Natural Areas

Lauren Quinn, a researcher at the University of Illinois, is looking for help to locate escaped individuals or whole populations of Miscanthus sinensis and/or M. sacchariflorus in natural areas in the U.S. These are large ornamental grasses commonly planted in gardens and used in landscaping. Unfortunately, many varieties of Miscanthus have the capacity to produce copious viable seeds which can establish in "natural" areas (e.g. roadsides, pastures, forest openings) to become invasive. As part of a large study aimed at describing the current distribution of naturalized Miscanthus populations, Lauren is planning to visit as many of these populations as possible this summer and next and needs help to build her database of locations.
More specifics on what she is looking for: The species: Miscanthus sinensis and Miscanthus sacchariflorus General info on M. sinensis and additional info on M. sinensis. 
General info on M. sacchariflorus.
Current known distribution of escaped, naturalized and/or invasive M. sinensis.
A side-by-side comparison of M. sinesis and M. sacchariflorus.
The environmental context: any Miscanthus individuals in "natural" areas. That is, plants that have established independently away from intentional cultivation. "Natural areas" can be roadsides, forest openings, pastures, etc. but not instances of "volunteer" plants growing in the same yard where they were planted in the first place. Lauren is looking for plants that have moved themselves (via seed dispersal or rarely rhizome dispersal) some substantial distance away from plantings (perhaps across some natural boundary) to establish healthy self-sustaining populations. Examples of such populations for M. sinensis.
The info Lauren would like: 
Location (GPS coordinates, if possible. If not, then an intersection, address or other landmark).
Description of environmental context (e.g. roadside, pasture, etc)
Population size (a rough estimate of the number of plants. E.g. one, a handful, a dozen, hundreds, etc)
If on private property, names/contact info of property owners.
An estimate of the history of the population (how long it has been there, where the nearest planting is and when it was planted)
A photo of the population
Your contact info
This would be easy to do in EDDMapS. All the required information can be added in the online data form. This would also make to information easy for Lauren to access and download in the format most useful to her. Training videos are available if needed for learning to use EDDMapS, but it is a very easy system to use.
For questions or to send information directly to Lauren.


Appalachian Trail Conservancy Uses EDDMapS

Appalachian Forest, photo by Paul Bolstad, University of Minnesota,

EDDMapS, the Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System, is being used to map invasive species along the Appalachian Trail. John Odell, Resource Management Coordinator for the Southern Region trains and organizes volunteers to identify, map and control invasive specie along the Appalachian Trail. To read more about this project in an article by Danny Bernstein click here.

Biological Science Technicians Openings

Multiple openings exist for seasonal Biological Science Technicians on the Ironton Ranger District of the Wayne National Forest, in southern Ohio. The duty station is located seven miles north of the historic city of Ironton, Ohio and the Ohio River on State Route 93 in Pedro, Ohio. Please respond by April 4th, 2011. For more information click here.

Call for Papers and Posters for Natural Areas Conference

SAVE THE DATE! The 38th annual Natural Areas Conference will be held November 1-4, 2011 in Tallahassee, Florida. Call for papers and posters. Download Abstracts Submission Guidelines.

NISAW Presentations Available

Presentations from National Invasive Species Awareness Week 2011 have been posted on the NISAW website. If you could not attend the meeting, here is your chance to catch up on what happened.

Sudden Oak Death Online Meeting & Webinar

The 2011 meeting of the California Oak Mortality Task Force will take place online this spring. On both Wednesday, May 25, 2011, and Wednesday, June 1, 2011, hour-long webinars on a variety of topics relevant to Phytophthora ramorum and Sudden Oak Death will be offered. While these sessions are free, advance registration is required. Further details on the agendas and registration.

Sudden oak death, photo by Joseph O'Brien, USDA Forest Service,

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Management of Invasive and Exotic Vegetation in Riparian Areas

River Course 435 - Management of Invasive and Exotic Vegetation in Riparian Areas
July 6, 2011
Where: NCSU Centennial Campus, Raleigh, NC
About the Workshop: The success of appropriate riparian vegetation is critical to the long term successful implementation of stream restoration designs. Engineers and designers often fail to properly consider the impact of exotic and invasive vegetation in restoration designs. This prevents the desired vegetation from becoming established, causing unplanned costs and even design failures.
This one-day course will introduce attendees to management considerations and techniques used in eliminating and preventing invasive and exotic vegetation in the riparian setting. Focused on riparian areas in the Southeast US, topics include identification of common invasive and exotic plants, ecological considerations, controls, costs, and tools of the trade. Outdoor field demonstrations will familiarize students various techniques used to control nuisance vegetation.
Who should attend: Engineers, designers, landscape architects, construction supervisors and anyone with an interest in having the appropriate riparian vegetation be successful.
Continuing Education: 6 CEUs are approved by the NC Board of Landscape Architects (Course #7569). Pesticide credits are pending approval.
For more information and to REGISTER ONLINE.

From Pest to Pesto

Kalamazoo Nature Center's original 24 page Garlic Mustard cookbook is available for a limited time.
Click here for order form.

13th Annual Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council Conference

Save the Date! May 3-5, 2011 is the joint meeting of the 13th Annual Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council Conference and the 2nd Kentucky Invasive Species Conference: This conference will encompass topics related to the research, management, outreach, education, and policy of invasive species in the eastern and central regions of the United States. Presentations will focus on the ecology of invasive species and their impact on ecosystem functions and processes, invasive species management, and invasive species education and policy. The conference will be held at the Hilton Lexington/Downtown, Lexington, Kentucky. To receive early registration rates, you must register by April 4, 2011. For additional conference information or to register, please visit

Arizona: Free Assistance when You Attend Invasives Workshop

For Arizona: Coronado Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D) in collaboration with the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, Cochise, Graham and Greenlee Counties, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), and southeastern Arizona Conservation Districts received funding from the Arizona State Forestry and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to provide a FREE Rapid Response System (RRS) that will protect the valuable grassland and forest habitats from invasive plants. There are five species that are becoming an increasing problem and that are being targeted through the RRS. They are Russian Knapweed, Onionweed, African Rue, Malta Starthistle, and Yellow Starthistle. The weeds are identified and treated best in March, April and May. For more information on how to register click here.
In order to be eligible for FREE herbicide or assistance in treating the targeted invasive weeds on your property, you must attend one of the educational workshops to help you identify weeds, correctly calibrate spraying equipment, and safely treat infected areas:
  • Safford Ag Center, 2134 S. Montierth Lane, Safford, on April 5 from 9 a.m. to Noon;
  • Duncan Jockey Club at the Fairgrounds, 1684 Fairgrounds Rd., Duncan, on April 6 from 9 a.m. to Noon;
  • Portal Library, 2393 S. Rock House Rd., Portal, Ariz., on April 8 from 10:30 a.m. to Noon;
  • Elfrida Community Center, 10566 N. Hwy. 191, Elfrida on April 20 from 9 a.m. to Noon;
  • Holy Trinity Monastery, Hwy. 80 South of St. David, on April 28 from 9:30 a.m. to12:30 p.m.;
  • San Simon School Computer Room, 2226 W. Business I-10, San Simon, on April 29 from 9 a.m. to Noon;
  • Cascabel Community Center on Cascabel Road from Benson, on April 30 from 9 a.m. to Noon;
  • Eagle Creek School in Clifton, on May 13 from 9 a.m. to Noon.
Yellow starthistle photo by Steve Dewey, Utah State University,

Watch for Cogongrass Blooming Soon!

Cogongrass will be blooming across the south starting now through June. Please be on the look-out for this terrible invasive grass while you are out in the field. Let’s keep cogongrass from devastating our natural areas and forests!
In Georgia report any suspected sighting to your county Forester or to your county Extension Agent.
To report any suspected sighting in South Carolina.
To report any suspected sighting in Tennessee.
To report any suspected sighting in Texas.
Click here to learn more about cogongrass.
Go to Bugwood Images for over 400 photographs of cogongrass. You can use these images free for educational purposes.

Cogongrass in bloom, photo by Chris Evans, River to River CWMA,

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

New Exhibits On Invasive Species Unveiled

The Everglades Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (ECISMA) in Florida has installed new exhibits at Big Cypress, Everglades and two other non-NPS sites that encourage viewers to quickly report observations of nonnative plants and animals.
Introduced species can sometimes threaten the health and function of South Florida’s diverse landscapes, requiring decades of expensive management. Early detection, followed by a rapid response, can help avert these costs and provide a greater chance for control. The “Florida Invaders” exhibit – now permanently installed at four venues around South Florida – showcases recent, unwanted arrivals to south Florida and encourages viewers to be on the lookout and report all observations by phone to 888-Ive-Got1 or online.
The Florida Invaders exhibit is currently on display at visitor centers at the Deering Estate at Cutler, Crandon Park, Everglades National Park, and Big Cypress National Preserve. The exhibits were fabricated and installed with funding from the National Park Service, and hosted in partnership with Miami-Dade County Parks and Recreation.
The exhibits are just one of a variety of communications tools developed by the ECISMA to foster greater understanding of invasive species issues and empower the south Florida community to take action. Online training, identification cards, iPhone apps and more are all available from the partnership website.
The Everglades Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area is a formal partnership among federal, state, and local government agencies, tribes, individuals, and various interested groups that manage invasive species and is defined by a geographic boundary.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Early Detection and Rapid Response Volunteers Needed

The Fairfax County Park Authority in Virginia is looking for volunteers to participate in their Early Detection and Rapid Response (EDRR) program. Survey Leaders and casual volunteers are needed to help conduct surveys on Fairfax County parkland that will look for new populations of invasive plants. The premise of this program is that if the populations can be found before they become established they can be prevented from becoming the next Japanese stiltgrass or garlic mustard. Volunteers must be able to identify native and non-native plants and be able to walk off trail.
The next training for those who wish to lead surveys is April 12th from 3-5 p.m. at Huntley Meadows Park in Alexandria, VA. For EDRR dates.
Please RSVP to the trainings and to the survey dates as space is limited. For more information or to RSVP.
Japanese stiltgrass, Microstegium vimineum infestation, photo by Chris Evans, River to River CWMA,

New Aquatic Invasive Alert for Florida

Red Root floater ,Phyllanthus fluitans, is a freshwater species native to South America and is the sole free-floating aquatic species of the large genus Phyllanthus. Common names of P. fluitans include red root floater and floating spurge. In 2010, red root floater was found growing in a canal and tributaries in, and near, the Peace River, Desoto County, Florida.
Because red root floater is a popular aquarium plant, it may have been introduced via the aquarium-plant trade. Red root floater can produce a closed canopy over water; and in backwater areas, small isolated populations can be difficult to find. Scientists fear if this species expands its range, it may become as problematical in Florida as have the South American water lettuce and water hyacinth, also canopy-producers.
Guide to Identification with pictures pdf which you can print.
Link to Red Root Floater page in IFAS, UFL, with more information including possible control measures.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Adirondack Aquatic Invasive Species Project Coordinator Position

The Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP) has an open position for the Adirondack Aquatic Invasive Species Project Coordinator. The position description can be viewed online, and applications should be submitted online, Job #13062. The deadline to apply is April 14, 2011.
The Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Project Coordinator is a team member of the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP), one of New York's eight Partnerships for Regional Invasive Species Management (PRISM). The APIPP facilitates the development and implementation of programs in the Adirondack region for invasive species prevention, monitoring, mapping, management, education, and restoration (more information online). The AIS Project Coordinator's primary role will be to lead APIPP's early detection and monitoring programs for AIS, coordinate partners in the region working on AIS prevention and management, and serve as a resource for partners and communities on AIS issues. This is an excellent opportunity for a motivated individual to work in a creative, team-oriented environment on an important and high profile conservation issue.

Call for Collaborators in Worldwide Garlic Mustard Study

One of the world's largest demographic surveys of an invasive species is looking for new and returning collaborators. The Global Garlic Mustard Field Survey is now beginning its third field season with demographic data and seed collections from over 150 populations across Europe and North America. This year we are working to double that number and we are particularly keen to increase collaboration in under-sampled regions. For previous sample sites and preliminary results, click here to see the map.
The project is an international collaboration aimed at obtaining much-needed data on the abundance and distribution of Alliaria petiolata, Garlic Mustard. It involves a very basic protocol that standardizes sampling across sites, and takes place in late spring/early summer making it ideal for incorporation into field courses, nature surveys, and long-term monitoring and management efforts. The estimated duration of sampling for a team of two people is 3-6 hours per population. Academics who contribute to this endeavor will have the opportunity to contribute to manuscripts resulting from the work.  For sampling protocol and additional information click here.
Alliaria petiolata, Garlic Mustard, photo by Chris Evans, River to River CWMA,

Guam Enacting Measures to Fund Invasive Species Council

Guam- Senator Chris Duenas has introduced a measure to establish the Invasive Species Council which it is hoped will provide a quick and coordinated response to the threats posed by non-native plants and animals that arrive on Guam's shores. Porposed Bill 111 will provide funding for those efforts by charging a one dollar fee per ton of cargo entering Guam's port. Read the article on this issue in PNC Pacific News Center.
Coccinia grandis, photo by Forest & Kim Starr, Starr Environmental,

Invasive vine found in Guam and Hawaii

Phragmites Symposium in Michigan

Phragmites Invasions in Michigan: A Symposium to Build Capacity for Management, to be held March 28-30, 2011 at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center in East Lansing, Mich. The symposium will feature plenary sessions on current and future invasive phragmites management and control efforts and technologies. In addition, a series of breakout sessions will be offered on topics including building organizational capacity, policy and regulations, case studies in collaborative management, and distribution and mapping. The symposium will formally convene at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, March 29 and conclude at 12:45 p.m. on Wednesday, March 30. An optional pre-symposium field trip showcasing invasive phragmites management and control efforts will be held on the afternoon of Monday, March 28. More information including a preliminary agenda is available on the symposium webpage.
REGISTRATION - NOW OPEN! The registration fee is $75 and includes lunch on Tuesday, breaks and all symposium materials. The deadline to register is Monday, March 21. Early registration is encouraged!

Invasive Plant Mapping Handbook Now Available Online

A handbook with instructions for collecting data on invasive species and then entering that data into EDDMapS, the Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System is now available free online. To print your own pdf, click here.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Reducing the Risk of Biological Invasion

"Reducing the Risk of Biological Invasion by Creating Incentives for Pet Sellers and Owners to Do the Right Thing" is an article by Gad Perry and Michael Farmer in the Journal of Herpetology. They focused their study on reptiles and amphibians but intend this to stand as a model for the entire exotic pet and ornamental plant trade. They also recommend focusing primarily on a local level rather than at a national level. They propose collecting funds from the trade to apply specifically to support quote, "(1) a national resource center offering information and training; (2) programs to professionalize local education and response teams, focusing on pet store owners, hobbyist organizations, and first responders; (3) an incentive program to encourage pet stores to take back unwanted animals; (4) a tracking system for identifying and penalizing owners of newly released animals; and (5) a rapid-response system to address newly reported invasives. Participation by local entities helps them avoid uniform policies from the national level that are typically both more onerous and less effective. To provide an additional incentive for the industry at large to participate in the process, the level of taxation could decrease as problems diminish." While this may raise red flags in some groups, what they have to say makes a lot of sense. One point they make is that importing exotic plants and animals will continue because there is money to be made from it. What the authors propose is a multidimensional approach which brings together the pet trade, hobbyists, local enthusiast groups, such as the Dallas–Fort Worth Herpetological Society and local public officials to work together towards a solution. To read the entire article click here.

Python in the Everglades, photo by Lisa Jameson, U.S. Fish and Wildlife,

Celebrate Earth Day with a Free Lunch!

Join Nature’s Academy for Their Second Annual Earth Day Pepper Bust!The Brazilian pepper tree was brought to Florida from South America in the 1800s because people thought it looked pretty. The green leaves and bright red berries reminded Floridians of Christmas holly bushes. Instead of a nice Christmas present; however, Florida was in for a nasty surprise. The Brazilian pepper tree is now considered one of the most invasive species in the state. It damages or replaces native plant habitats that are food sources for native wildlife. This results in the displacement of wildlife, which negatively affects our natural system and ecosystem functions.
Do your part to protect Florida from species such as these at our invasive plant removal!
Help protect local water resources within Tampa Bay at this invasive plant removal.
Participants will learn:
  • How invasive plants harm water quality
  • The critical role native plants play in protecting water quality
  • How to identify invasive and native plants
  • How to properly remove Brazilian pepper trees
Come enjoy the outdoors, learn about your water resources and protect the environment.
When: Saturday, April 23, 2011
Time: 9 a.m. until noon (lunch to follow)
Where: Fort De Soto Park, 3500 Pinellas Bayway South,
Tierra Verde — Meet at East Beach for Registration
RSVP: Please call (941) 538-6829 or email to register for the invasive plant removal.
Please remember to wear a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, covered toe shoes, sunscreen and bug repellant!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

EPA Seeks Comments From Boaters

"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is seeking public comment from boaters and other stakeholders to help develop proposed regulations, as required by the 2008 Clean Boating Act, to reduce water pollution and the spread of invasive species in the nation's rivers, lakes and other water bodies. As an alternative to permits required for commercial vessels, the act directs EPA to develop and promulgate management practices for recreational vessels. The important input received through this process will help guide the development of proposed regulations to mitigate adverse effects from recreational boat discharges, such as bilgewater, graywater and deck runoff, that may contain substances harmful to water quality or spread invasive species. Public listening sessions and webinars are available to those who would like to provide input (various dates between Mar 18-Apr 29, 2011)" quoted from Southern Maryland Online. To read the entire article, click here.
Invasive plant tangled in boats propellers, photo by Wilfredo Robles,
Mississippi State University,

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Pollinator LIVE: A Distance Learning Adventure

Carpenter bee pollinating woody goldenrod
photo by Karan A. Rawlins, U.G.A.,
While pollinators may come in small sizes, they play a large and often undervalued role in the production of the food we eat, the health of flowering plants, and the future of wildlife. A decline in the numbers and health of pollinators over the last several years poses a significant threat to the integrity of biodiversity, to global food webs, and to human health, according to scientists.Check out this series of live interactive webcasts, web seminars, and satellite field trips about pollinators, gardening, and conservation. PollinatorLIVE is geared to grades 4 to 8. Click here for the website.

Looking for Healthy American Elm Trees

Before elm populations were reduced by Dutch elm disease (DED), American elm (Ulmus americana) trees used to be dominant in many of the areas which are now dominated by ash trees. DED-tolerant American elm trees could be a good planting option for areas where ash is currently being impacted by emerald ash borer. There is a small plantation of elms in various stages of testing for DED tolerance. Several genotypes have been shown to tolerate DED, and a large portion of the progeny from crosses among these trees are DED-tolerant as well. The potential of seedlings from DED-tolerant crosses to be used for restoration plantings are currently being tested. It is hoped that large, stately American elm trees will someday grace American floodplain and swamp forests once again.
American elm trees, photo by Joseph O'Brien, USDA Forest Service,

More DED-tolerant genotypes of American elm are currently needed for testing. The plan is to use them as parent trees for a plantation in order to have enough genetic diversity to use it as a seed orchard for large-scale plantings. Healthy American elm trees larger than 24 inches DBH (diameter at breast height) that are growing in areas that have had DED and that have not been treated with fungicides to prevent DED are needed. If you see a survivor elm that fits this description, please click here to enter its location and DBH at the USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station website.
All of the entries will be compiled in a database, prioritized for sampling, land owners contacted, and then small branches collected from the trees to propagate and test for DED-tolerance. Please forward to anyone who knows how to identify elm trees and might have interest in this project.

Lionfish Spread Unprecedented

Lionfish, Pterois volitans, NOAA Archives,

The lionfish is the only non-native marine fish species known to not only survive, but reproduce and thrive along the Eastern seaboard, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean. As predators lionfish have the potential to negatively impact these ecosystems. Lionfish are a popular aquarium species and it is believed this invasion originated when people dumped aquariums along with their living contents into the ocean. To read an article on lionfish in Science Daily, click here.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Spring is the Time to Watch for Cogongrass in Georgia

Spring is the time for cogongrass flowering. Now is the time to begin looking for cogongrass in its flowering stage. The flowers are 2-8 inches in length; light, fluffy dandelion-like seeds that are white in color and cylindrical in shape. Flowering time is dependent on the local climate, but is usually present from late March through early June.
Cogongrass flower photo by Rebekah D. Wallace, U.G.A.,
Landowners are encouraged to spend time on their property searching for this invasive grass. Normally, cogongrass grows in circular patches. Identification brochures are available at your local Georgia Forestry Commission (GFC) county office. Personnel from your local GFC office can make a positive identification on reported cogongrass finds.
Click the links for the Spring 2011 Update on cogongrass in Georgia, a public service announcement about cogongrass and an educational video to learn more about cogongrass.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Treasure Coast partnership recognized for actions to protect coastal environment

STUART — U.S. Department of Interior Deputy Assistant Secretary Eileen Sobeck was in Martin County on Friday to present the Treasure Coast Invasive Species Management Area partnership with the 2010 Coastal America Partnership Award.
The environmental award, the highest given by the administration, is for outstanding actions to restore and protect the coastal environment in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Indian River counties.
The ceremony, attended by approximately 70 members and guests of local parks and environmental agencies, was held at St. Lucie Inlet Preserve State Park.
The Treasure Coast partnership, established in 2007, is basically a group of "land managers working together," said Mike Renda of the Nature Conservancy. "This award is the result of multiple levels of federal, state local and nonprofit agencies working to get funding from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service."
In 2008, the federal service's Coastal Program funded a multiyear program, currently totaling $134,000, to target the removal of Scaevola taccada, or beach naupaka, as well as other invasive exotics in beach dune systems.
The Treasure Coast group has a mission statement to reduce and control invasive species, reduce new invasive species, build new relationships, spread information and perform applied research.
"The key is on-ground early detection and rapid response," Sobeck said. "This award recognizes people at the appropriate juncture, and embodies the principles that we at the federal government wish to show."
Virginia Tippie, director of Coastal America, said, "The efforts here are a striking example of environmental success and a model for others around the country to emulate."
Added Renda, "It's important to celebrate our success. We don't often do it. This lets everybody know it's hard to do, and it's a worthy effort."
Michael Yustin, Martin County Engineering Department environmental lands coordinator, was grateful for being part of the award.
"We hope this can be a mechanism to educate the public about the need to get rid of invasive plants," he said. "We're not going to be able to restore Florida without private landowners input and help."
The member organizations being recognized with plaques included representatives from the Nature Conservancy, Martin County, Florida Park Service, Department of Environmental Protection, St. Lucie County, University of Florida/IFAS, Treasure Coast Resource Conservation and Development Council, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Click here to view article. 

Burmese Pythons Eating Native Birds in the Everglades

A recent study reported in The Wilson Journal of Ornithology, shows that at least 25 species of birds are part of the diet of the non-native Burmese pythons (Python molurus bivittatus) in Everglades National Park, Florida. Of the 25 bird species, four species of birds identified in this study are of special concern in Florida and a fifth, the Wood Stork (Mycteria americana), is listed as federally endangered. To read the article, 'Birds Consumed by the Invasive Burmese Python (Python molurus bivittatus) in Everglades National Park, Florida, USA' by Carla J. Dove, Ray W. Snow, Michael R. Rochford, and Frank J. Mazzotti, click here.

Invasive Species Conference June 9th, 2011

Online registration is now open for the June 9th, 2011 Fort Detrick/Forest Glenn Invasive Species Conference in Maryland. This year’s focus is the use of Strike Teams to Prevent and Manage Invasive Species. The conference will be held at the Armed Forces Pest Management Board, Fort Detrick, Forest Glen Annex (Formerly Walter Reed Annex), Bldg. 172 - Forney Rd in Silver Spring, MD. Click here to see the current agenda and to register. Registration closes on June 1st and is limited to the first 50 registrants. Registration is $20 with refreshments, lunch and T-shirt included in the registration fee. Please email Steven Manning if you have any questions.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Didymo: Identification and Specimen Collection Protocol

Didymosphenia geminata is a nuisance freshwater alga, commonly referred to as "didymo". It is found in streams and rivers in much of North America. Didymo increasingly poses a threat to aquatic ecosystems because it forms extensive mats on stream beds. Decontaminating equipment between uses in different freshwater systems is important to prevent the spread of didymo.
Dr. Sarah Spaulding has provided this description for how to collect and report voucher material for Didymosphenia geminata. Report occurrences or suspected growths of didymo by collecting a small sample (put a pinch of the material in a vial with 90% ethanol or thoroughly dry material and fold inside a business card). Label samples with the date, latitude, longitude (provide detailed accurate site information). Note that the reports of samples can not be confirmed without a voucher specimen.
Send reports and samples to:
Dr. Sarah Spaulding
US Geological Survey, Fort Collins Science Center
1560 30th St.
Boulder CO 80309
Click here for a guide to field identification of didymo. Click here for more information on didymo.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A Management Guide for Invasive Plants in Southern Forests

The U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station is distributing free copies of a new management guide which provides information on controlling and removing invasive species in the South. The Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health also has the publication in their BugwoodWiki database. For free copies of the management guide call (828) 257-4830. Click here to view the publication via BugwoodWiki.

Invasive Mussel Found

An invasive quagga mussel was found on a sailboat this past weekend at the Dayton Yacht harbor on Flathead Lake in Montana. The mussel, found during an inspection, was an adult, 1/4 of an inch long and attached to the stern of the hull. Click here to read more.

Firewood Threatened By Invasive Pests

Firewood may contain non-native insects and plant diseases. Bringing firewood into the park from other areas may accidentally spread pest insects and diseases that threaten park resources and the health of our forests. Click here to view a PDF on the issue.

2011 NAEPPC Hoops for Habitat

Are you a fan of March Madness? (Or know someone who is?) Enter the “2011 NAEPPC Hoops for Habitat” to help state Invasive Plant Councils put a full-court press on wildland weeds!
Here's a way to put that passion for college basketball into play for some environmental good. Donate $25, pick the winners for the 64-team tournament, and vie for: a $100 gift certificate to Forestry Suppliers, REI, Trader Joe's, or the state Invasive Plant Council of your choice. Plus, the national title! (Of “National Champion Hoopster for Habitat" that is.)
Bracket selections can be made from 8:00 am ET Monday March 14 - 12:20 pm ET Thursday March 17! Sign up now at Cal-IPC's online form! Sponsored by the California Invasive Plant Council on behalf of the National Association of Exotic Pest Plant Councils (NAEPPC).

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

International Conference: Ecology and Management of Alien Plant Invasions

The 11th International Conference on the Ecology and Management of Alien Plant Invasions under the title
"Bridging the gap between scientific knowledge and management practice" will be organized in Szombathely, Hungary from 30th August to 3rd September, 2011. The 'Call for Abstracts' is now available. Abstracts may be submitted via the online abstract submission system only. For further details please click here.

Florida's Nonnative Pet Amnesty Day is March 12

In an effort to keep unwanted exotic pets out of Florida's native habitats, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and Zoo Miami will host Nonnative Pet Amnesty Day on March 12 at Zoo Miami.
Burmese python, Python molurus ssp. bivittatus (Squamata: Pythonidae)
Pet Amnesty Day at Zoo Miami is free and open to the public. Pet owners can surrender exotic animals to FWC representatives from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. next Saturday, with no questions asked and no penalties. The zoo is located at 12400 S.W. 152nd St.
A veterinarian will examine each animal, and the FWC will attempt to place all healthy animals with qualified adopters. Amnesty Day is also a family event featuring live animals and experts who will provide information about caring for exotic pets.
Anyone interested in adopting nonnative pets should click here to download the adoption application. Adopters must have knowledge of a species' natural history and caging requirements and have proper facilities for the animals they are interested in adopting. There is no fee for being an adopter.

Eat Invasive Species the website all about Eating Invasive Species. From thier website: From prehistoric times, humans have had an amazing track-record of severely reducing the populations of species we eat. Indeed, it seems that much of the time we can’t stop ourselves. Can we tap that hunger to reduce the impacts of harmful invasive species? We think the answer is Yes! Click on to check them out.

"If You Can't Beat It, Eat It!"

The Mother Nature Network released six edible invasive species recipes yesterday. The recipes consist of fennel-infused vodka, nopales rancheros, lionfish nachos, garlic mustard pesto, Himalayan blackberry cobbler and wild boar confit with gnocchi and maple glaze sus scorta. Click here to read more.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Invasive Species Rap Song

Click here to watch a video of an invasive species rap song. Two girls made the song for a science project.

The Importance of Biodiversity

There has been an ongoing debate on just how important biodiversity actually is to the functioning of our ecosystems. An article in the American Journal of Botany, 'THE FUNCTIONAL ROLE OF PRODUCER DIVERSITY IN ECOSYSTEMS' which is based on two decades of research and data, states, "we can say with certainty that biodiversity does indeed regulate several processes that are essential to the functioning of ecosystems and that many of these functions are important for humanity." American Journal of Botany 98(3): 000–000. 2011. This article is available for free through the end of March, 2011. To read the article click here.

UH Provides Invasive Species Classes

The University of Hawaii Master Gardeners and the Hawaii Invasive Species Council have teamed up to provide classes and demonstrations to the public on home gardening and knowledge when choosing plants and plant material. These organizations understand the importance of keeping Hawaii's native plants from being destroyed by invasive species. Click here to read more.

Job Posting: Invasive Species Coordinator

In Minnesota the North Shore Stewardship Association is filling an invasive species grant coordinator position. This is a six month, full-time temporary, grant-funded position. The coordinator is directly responsible for assuring that the tasks outlined by Sugarloaf, in coordination with the Cook County Invasive Team (CCIT), are achieved in a timely fashion.
Timeline: Full-time, grant funded position runs from mid-April 2011 to September 30, 2011.
Application Process: Applicant must submit: (1) resume; (2) letter of application that matches abilities with the knowledge / skills listed and (3) names, addresses and phone numbers of three references.
For more information click here.

Spider Causes Vehicle Recall

2009-2010 MAZDA6 sedans have been recalled due to a yellow sac spider (Cheiracanthium inclusum). The spider can weave a web in the evaporative canister vent line which may cause a restriction of the line. This restriction could prevent air from getting into the gas tanks, resulting in a crack in the gas tank that could cause a fire. Click here to read more.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Boat Traffic Between Lakes Spreads Invasives

Boaters and fishermen have a direct impact on whether invasive species are spread from one body of water to another. Simple guidelines are: drain your boat; never move live fish; never move live bait or water from bait containers; and clean plants off your boat after removing it from the water and before moving it to another location. A recent survey in Wisconsin shows that the majority of people are following these guidelines to protect our waterways. To learn more about how to protect our waterways click here.

Great Lakes SmackDown! Terrestrial Terror Invaders

Join the Great Lakes SmackDown! Terrestrial Terror. Which terrestrial invasive species is the most ecologically destructive to the Great Lakes watershed? You get to decide. Click here for The Contenders. Click here for instructions on how to make your choices. 

Last Day of NISAW

Cuban tree frogs, island applesnails and Brazilian peppertree are a few of the invasive species battled by Loret Setters at her home in Florida. Read her article at the Wildlife Garden: Redefining Beautiful website.

Native Plants: Nursery Grown or Nursery Propagated?

Do you know the difference between “nursery grown” and “nursery propagated?” is an article on the Ecosystem Gardening website. It is good to know the difference when shopping for native plants to replace all the invasive plants in your landscaping. Click here for the answer.

Biocontrol Reduces Tamarix & Slows Water Loss in the West

A research article 'Early impacts of biological control on canopy cover and water use of the invasive saltcedar tree (Tamarix spp.) in western Nevada, USA.' in Oecologia, 2010; 165 (3). The study by Robert R. Pattison, Carla M. D’Antonio, Tom L. Dudley, Kip K. Allander, Benjamin Rice shows that the saltcedar leaf beetle (Diorhabda carinulata) reduces the canopy cover of the salt cedar trees by over 90% and reduced stem water use by 50 to 70%. More research needs to be done to determine long-term reduction of water use from reducing the salt cedar canopy, but based on these results it looks promising. To read the article click here.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Success of Introduced Amphibians Increases in the Presence of Similar Native Species

'Establishment Success of Introduced Amphibians Increases in the Presence of Congeneric Species' is the title of a research article published this month in The American Naturalist. The ability to predict the invasive potential of a species has become one of the central goals of conservation efforts. This study suggests that preadaptation is a factor in a species successful establishing in the new environment. So basically, if there are already native amphibians in the same genus as the introduced species living successfully in the habitat, then the introduced species stands a better chance of being successful in that habitat, too. To read the article by Reid Tingley, Benjamin L. Phillips, and Richard Shine click here.

Alabama Invasive Plant Council 9th Annual Conference

The Alabama Invasive Plant Council will hold it's 9th Annual Conference on April 20th at the Auburn Hotel and Conference Center in Auburn, AL. The meeting has been approved for a wide range of CEU points, including pesticide recertification for Florida, Mississippi and Georgia. See the ALIPC web page for more details.

Georgia No Child Left Inside Coalition

Georgia No Child Left Inside Coalition: Connecting Georgians with nature! People will protect the things they love. Teach a child to love nature. Click here for Georgia's website. Other related sites: Reversing Nature Deficit and  The Green Hour and a pdf 'Connecting Kids with Nature'.

South Georgia Native Plant & Wildflower Symposium

Want to know more about native plants? How to integrate them into your existing garden? Do you long for an oasis that is alive with plants and pleasant sounds of life? You will want to attend this Symposium! Arrive early, shop the plant sale, explore exhibits. UGA's Tifton Campus Conference Center is the place to be Wednesday, March 23, 2011. For details and to register click here.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Habitat Restoration Always Begins the Same Way

I have had the privilege of participating in meetings of the Georgia Plant Conservation Alliance over the last couple of years. It is inspiring and interesting to hear reports on what different groups around Georgia are doing to restore and protect rare plant habitat. The sad part is that every project begins the same way...the removal of invasive species. The invasive species invading these remote natural areas came out of our backyards. Birds and other wildlife eat fruit from the plants we chose for our landscaping and later deposit those seeds, often many miles away. Click here to read an article on '5 Star' recognition for habitat restoration projects in Georgia. Way to go Dr. Jenny Cruse-Sanders and Dr. Mincy Moffett! Click here for a pdf of  'A Homeowner’s Guide to Preventing the Introduction and Spread of Invasive Plants in Georgia: You Can Make a Difference in Your Backyard'.

Aiding and Abetting Invasive Species

'Aiding and Abetting Invasive Species' an article in The Prairie Ecologist by Chris Helzer. Chris poses a question I have heard asked by many people, 'It’s bad enough that invasive species are taking over our prairies and other natural areas.  Why do we insist on helping them do it?'.  He makes the point that plants known to be invasive are still being promoted and sold. Why does this happen? Laws, rules, regulations always follow behind research and knowledge. The more folks who know which plants are an invasive problem and how they can help make positive changes, the more quickly those changes will happen. Great article Chris. To read Chris' article click here.

Bugwood Image Slideshow

From Bugwood Images: One of the most requested features has been the ability to show a slideshow of images from the Bugwood Database on any other website WITHOUT having to download the images or be an IT guru. We finally have some new tools that make this possible! Read the article on pages 5 and 6 in the NPDN newsletter by Joseph LaForest to learn how.

The Art Of War On Invasive Species

'The Art Of War On Invasive Species',  an article on NPR  by Linton Weeks tells the story of artist Patterson Clark. He harvests invasive species in a park near his home which he then turns into art and art supplies. The message is to take something negative and use it in a positive way. To read the article click here. Clark also has a website called Alienweeds.

Animal Record Holders

Click here to see a video of seven animal record holders. They range from the dog with the longest ears to the shortest horse.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Asian Carp Crisis Caused By Animal Import Law

In 1900, a law governing animal imports was passed and Asian carp was allowed into the United States. To date, this law remains unchanged. Now with two species of Asian carp invading the Great Lakes, conservation groups are asking federal officials to update import screening laws before a new invader begins corrupting our ecosystem. Click here to read a press release on this issue.

National Invasive Species Awareness Week 2011

National Invasive Species Awareness Week is Feb. 28-March 4, 2011. There will be a WebEx on March 1st covering the State and Regional Invasive Species Workshop being held during National Invasive Species Awareness Week. NISAW will be hosting and broadcasting two panel discussions during the afternoon:

1:15 - 2:45 pm - Session #1: Elements of Effective State and Regional Coordination and
3:00 - 4:30 pm - Session #4: Strengthening Grassroots Partnerships CISMA/PRISM/CWMA

This will be an audio broadcast only, so you do not need to phone in or VOIP in - just need speakers or headphones to listen and watch from your computer. You can join in for either or both of the sessions by registering for this event. Simply log on during the time of the session you are interested in. Click here to register.