Friday, March 26, 2010

Week of March 29, 2010

Updated 4/1/10

Invasive fish hunted by woman armed with bow and arrow leaps out of the water to smack her in the face

A carp hunted by a woman armed with a bow and arrow has got his own back – by delivering a well-aimed slap to the face of his pursuer.

The bizarre shot was caught on the reservoirs of the Illinois River, where the population of Asian carp, an invasive species, has exploded.

The fish, who have habit of jumping out of the water when boats approach, are regarded as a nuisance, which has led to the sport of hunting them.

By providing participants with bows and arrows, Chris Brackett and his team have coined the term ‘extreme aerial bowfishing’ – conducted from a moving speedboat.

But while the sport is rapidly catching on, it is fraught with danger – for the hunters as well as the hunted. Indeed Brackett’s fiancĂ©e, Jodi Barnes, was pictured being hit in the face by a flying carp as she prepared to take aim and fire an arrow at it.

While Barnes’ prey managed to score a direct hit against his assailant, it is not known if the flying carp managed to leap back to the safety of the river following the daring move.

Read more at link.


Insect to fight Japanese knotweed released in UK

By Rebecca Morelle
Science reporter, BBC News

A tiny Japanese insect that could help the fight against an aggressive superweed has been given the go-ahead for a trial release in England.

Since Japanese knotweed was introduced to the UK it has rapidly spread, and the plant currently costs over £150m a year to control and clear.

But scientists say a natural predator in the weed's native home of Japan could also help to control it here.

The insect will initially be released in a handful of sites this spring.

This is the first time that biocontrol - the use of a "natural predator" to control a pest - has been used in the EU to fight a weed.

Wildlife Minister Huw Irranca-Davies said: "These tiny insects, which naturally prey on Japanese Knotweed, will help free local authorities and industry from the huge cost of treating and killing this devastating plant."

Alien invaders

Japanese knotweed was introduced to the UK by the Victorians as an ornamental plant, but it soon escaped from gardens and began its rampant spread throughout the UK.

It grows incredibly quickly - more than one metre a month - and rapidly swamps any other vegetation in its path.

It is so hardy that it can burst through tarmac and concrete, causing costly damage to pavements, roads and buildings.

But removal is difficult and expensive; new estimates suggest it costs the UK economy £150m a year.

However, in Japan, the plant is common but does not rage out of control like it does in the UK, thanks to the natural predators that keep it in check.

Scientists at Cabi - a not-for-profit agricultural research organisation - used this as their starting point to track down a potential knotweed solution.

They looked at the superweed's natural predators - nearly 200 species of plant-eating insects and about 40 species of fungi - with the aim of finding one with an appetite for Japanese knotweed and little else.

After testing their candidates on 90 different UK plant species, including plants closely related to Japanese knotweed such as bindweeds and important crops and ornamental species, they discovered a psyllid called Aphalara itadori was the best control agent.

The little insect feeds on the sap of the superweed, stunting its growth.

Dr Dick Shaw, the lead researcher on the project from Cabi, told BBC News: "Safety is our top priority. We are lucky that we do have an extremely specific agent - it just eats invasive knotweeds."

Read more at link.


Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program recruiting IS Project Coordinator

The Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP), a partnership program protecting the Adirondack region from non-native invasive species, is now recruiting for a full-time 6-month position for a Terrestrial Invasive Species Project Coordinator (Job ID 11873). The main responsibilities will be surveying, mapping, and managing terrestrial infestations and facilitating community-based inventory and control efforts. The position is posted online at, with a start date in May and end date in October. Applications are due by April 2, 2010. All applications must be made online via EOE


From the New York Flora Association Blog...

Invasive Plant Identification Workshop in CT

workshopDistinguishing between invasive plants from native lookalikes in late winter/early spring: a 1-day Workshop in Connecticut.

Date & time: Saturday, April 10, 2010, 8:30 AM – ~5:00 PM. Tuition: $75.00.

There are a number advantages to doing invasive plant control outside of the growing season, (e.g., no disturbance of breeding birds, student volunteers more available, less disturbance of native vegetation). But it requires more advanced field identification skills to avoid throwing native babies out with the bath water, when working at sites with a significant native plant component, e.g., especially, “early intervention” sites with intact natural communities. This workshop focuses on field identification of woody invasive plants in late winter/early spring, prime season for pulling invasives but a difficult time to identify many woody plants using guides and manuals, as many are somewhere between dormant and leaf-on state. The venue is presently planned to be White Memorial Conservation Center, a 4000-acre preserve in Litchfield, CT, and at least one riparian site in Torrington, CT. The venue may be relocated northward 20-30 miles, if we have an unusually warm early spring. The workshop will run from 08:30 to ~17:00. The running of the workshop is conditional upon a minimum enrollment of 15 people. Final decision as to whether or not the workshop will run will be made on April 3nd. Enrollment is limited to 20 people, so those who are sure they want to take the workshop should register as soon as possible as possible to reserve their space. In the event of extremely unfavorable weather conditions for field work all or part of the day, all or part of the workshop will be changed into a lab/classroom session, using collected specimens.

For more information contact the instructor, Bill Moorhead (860-567-4920, or John Anderson, Executive Director, Aton Forest Inc. (860-542-5125,

Photo of instructor Bill Moorhead


Invasives discussed in Lake Placid

Senior Staff Writer
Adirondack Daily Enterprise

LAKE PLACID, NY - Representatives of several watershed protection groups and experts in the management of aquatic invasive plants met with the village Board of Trustees Monday to discuss how to prevent another infestation of invasives in Paradox Bay on Lake Placid.

The panel discussion, which was requested by Lake Placid Shore Owners Association President Mark Wilson, focused on steps the village could take to prevent the spread of invasives through the village boat launch on the lake. The invasive plant variable-leaf milfoil was found in Paradox Bay last summer.

Read more at link.


SE-EPPC-SERI meeting reminder

Join us May 11th through 13th for the first joint meeting between the Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council and the Southeast Chapter of the Society for Ecological Restoration International

Submit those abstracts and take advantage of the early registration rate now!

This will be an exciting meeting that brings together practitioners and researchers from the fields of restoration and invasive plant species management. Take this unique opportunity to network and learn together. The meeting will be held at the historic Sheraton Read House Hotel in the heart of downtown Chattanooga, Tennessee.

For more information about the meeting and instructions on abstract submittal, go to the meeting web site at

Abstract submission deadline extended to April 1.
Early registration available through April 2.
Conference room rates available through April 16.

Terri Hogan
Stones River National Battlefield
Murfreesboro, TN 37129


Cooperative Weed Management Area (CWMA) Workshops

There are a few seats available if you would like to come to a workshop to learn about Cooperative Weed Management Areas (CWMAs) on April 6 (Hadley, MA) or April 8 (Augusta, ME) and discuss the opportunities and benefits of starting one of these partnerships. The U.S. Forest Service and the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge are collaborating on offering these workshops, with the Forest Service providing funding. See below for more information about CWMA’s and the focus of each workshop. See registration information at the end of this message. Space is limited; please register by 4pm Friday, April 2.

DATE: April 6, 2010
PLACE: Hadley, MA, Northeast Regional Office of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
FOCUS: The "what, how and why" of forming a CWMA with a focus on collaborations in
the Connecticut River watershed

DATE: April 8, 2010
PLACE: Augusta, ME, Pine Tree Arboretum
FOCUS: The "what, how and why" of forming a CWMA with a focus on collaborations
in New England with a focus on Maine and New Hampshire

TIME (for Both Workshops): 9am -- 3:45pm

Please send the following registration information to:

Kate Howe, Midwest Invasive Plant Network

Choice of April 6 (MA) or April 8 (ME):
CT River subwatershed name (for April 6th workshop):
Lunch order *($10 - see below): Vegetarian or Carnivore

*Lunch will be provided for $10.00 (pay at workshop) or please bring your own. Coffee will be provided.

*** Please call or email to cancel if you cannot attend.***

If you need details on agenda or directions or to cancel at a late date:

For April 6:
Cynthia Boettner
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Phone: 413-548-8002 ext. 115
For April 8:
Florence Peterson
U.S. Forest Service
Phone: 603-868-7714


Invasive Plant Council of New York State disbanded

The Invasive Plant Council of New York State has disbanded. The baton is now passed to the eight Partnerships for Regional Invasive Species Management (PRISMs):


Second Edition of the Federal Noxious Weed Disseminules of the U.S. announced

CPHST announces the release of the second edition of Federal Noxious Weed Disseminules of the U.S. (FNW E2), a tool for the identification or verification of plant disseminules (seeds and fruits) of taxa on the U.S. Federal Noxious Weed List, Federal Noxious Weed Disseminules of the U.S., Edition 2.0


Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Week of March 1, 2010

Greetings. The Eastern Invasives blog will be down for a week or two. I may be able to post a few news items, but not many for a couple of weeks.