Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Week of April 4, 2011

Updated 4/8/11. Recent additions are at the bottom of each week's post.

Register Your Invasive Plant Volunteer Group! (Mid-Atlantic Region)

Do you have a volunteer-based invasive plant management program in the mid-Atlantic region? If so, please register it!

If you oversee a group of volunteers who conduct invasive plant removals in DC, DE, MD, NJ, PA, VA, or WV, please take a minute to add your group to the Invasive Plant Volunteers Directory.

To register, click here to complete a short survey:

Why bother? Because understanding the number and distribution of volunteer groups in our area will help to:

Recognize the significance of volunteer efforts in restoring invaded lands,
Identify areas in need of volunteer assistance,
Help connect interested volunteers with a suitable group,
Build a stronger network of invasive plant workers in the region,
Build support for potential funding of volunteer-based programs.

The directory will eventually be posted to the Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council (MAIPC) website at www.maipc.org.

Special thanks to Karan Rawlins, University of Georgia Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health, for putting our survey into SurveyMonkey!

Thank you,

IPM & Invasive Species Specialist
NCR Center for Urban Ecology
Washington, DC 20007


Caterpillar infestation seen in midcoast Maine

The Associated Press
Posted April 06

AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine Conservation Department officials say an infestation of a noxious invasive caterpillar in the Brunswick area is worse this year than last.

Entomologists say web surveys during the winter show extremely high levels of brown-tail moth caterpillar webs in the tops of oak trees. Surveys were done in January and February in the southern Maine coastal area, from Belfast to south of Portland.

Entomologist Charlene Donahue says the number of webs in Brunswick, Bath, West Bath, Topsham and Bowdoinham appears to have doubled over last year. The caterpillar also is showing up in Falmouth, Turner, Augusta and Lewiston.

Read the full story here: link.


Controlling Invasive Species in Your Woodlot

9am to noon on Saturday, May 21st, Sodus, New York

This outdoor hands-on session will be at a woodlot in Sodus, NY so dress appropriately for weather conditions.

During the workshop we'll cover identification and control options for invasive species in the woodlot and introduce participants to crop tree management, a forestry method well suited for owners of small woodlots.

Registration deadline is Friday May 13th 2011.

To register send $10.00 per person along with your name address and phone number to Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wayne County, 1581 Rte 88N, Newark, NY 14513

Any additional questions please call (315)-331-8415 or e-mail mgwayne@cornell.edu For special needs contact us one week prior to this program.

Sponsored by:
New York Forest Owners Association
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wayne County Master Gardener/Master Forest Owner Programs


CT DEP training targets spread of zebra mussels in Candlewood Lake

The Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Candlewood Lake Authority (CLA) has announced that training is available for people interested in volunteering their time to monitor boat launches on Candlewood Lake for the presence of the invasive plants and animals, such as zebra mussels. Zebra mussels were discovered in Lake Zoar and Lake Lillinonah on October 2010. This is the first new report of zebra mussels in Connecticut since 1998 when they were discovered in East and West Twin Lakes in Salisbury.

The training will educate volunteers on how to identify and detect invasive species and also to instruct boaters on how to do the same. Volunteers will also be talking to boaters about ways they can prevent the spread of zebra mussels. Volunteers will receive a handbook, supplies and a t-shirt that identifies them as volunteers.

The first training session will be held Saturday April 9, 2011 from 9:30 AM until 12:00 PM at the New Milford Police Department located at 49 Poplar Street (Route 202) in New Milford. For more information or to volunteer, contact the CLA at 860-354-6298 or by email at clapad@earthlink.net.

Read the full story at: link.


Backpack and Spot Treatment Calibration Guidelines

Useful information from out West...

A simple, six-step method for calibrating your single-nozzle backpack or other spot-treatment spray equipment.



Maryland Invasive Plant Bill Set to Become Law

News from the Anacostia Watershed Society

The invasive plant bill (HB 831) we have worked on for the last two years has now passed both chambers of the Maryland General Assembly. The bill was sponsored by 19 Delegates and was passed unanimously in the State Senate yesterday, 46-0! AWS staff is thrilled to see this bill passed since we brought back the conversation to the table at the Maryland Invasive Species Council (MISC) two years ago. At that time we came up with a proposed bill we crafted with the valuable help of one of our best interns ever: Leena Chapagain. Thanks you so much, Leena! Almost at the same time another bill was being proposed by a lawyer from Baltimore and his visionary school-age son! Consensually AWS decided to sit down with all the stakeholders and craft a new bill, that's the HB 831. The other stakeholders were the representatives from the following organizations: Maryland Department of Agriculture, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Anacostia Watershed Society, The Nature Conservancy, Sylvan Green Earth Consulting, Maryland Nursery and Landscape Association –among other representatives of the horticultural industry--, and Whiteford, Taylor & Preston LLP.

Read the full story here: link.


Nature’s “Melting Pot”: Invasive Species and Ecosystem Value

Courtesy of the Southern IPM blog

In Friday’s OpEd section in the New York Times, writer Hugh Raffles offered an interesting–but somewhat inaccurate–view on exotic invasive species. His premise was that invasive species can provide diversity and benefits to the earth, just as new immigrants contribute to the diversity and health of society. You can read the full article here: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/03/opinion/03Raffles.html?_r=2

Since the article was published on Friday, several of our colleagues who work in the area of invasive species have developed responses to the article. The following is by Sylvan Kaufman of Sylvan Green Earth Consulting in Maryland:

"Although the author is correct that many non-native species provide beneficial goods and services, there is a fundamental difference between the melting pot of humanity and the melting pot of a community of plants and animals. Humans are all one species even if they have different cultural backgrounds. Communities are made up of many species. If a non-native plant or animal threatens the continued existence of one that has lived here for thousands of years, do we just let that species disappear or do we decide that it may have some value and that we should protect it? For many species, we don’t yet know what value they may provide humans. It takes years of research to determine whether the chemical compounds of a particular plant might yield a life-saving drug, or if the pollinator services offered by honeybees are more valuable than those offered by a diversity of native insects. "


Virginia Invasive Plant Removal Day, May 7

Join volunteers for the 3rd annual event at sites throughout Virginia on an endeavor to stop the spread of non-native invasive plants.

Virginia Invasive species are recognized nationally and locally as a costly and leading threat to healthy ecosystems. The estimated annual cost of invasive species in Virginia is $1 billion (Va Dept. of Conservation & Recreation). Non-native invasive plants, animals, and diseases occur in all of Virginia's ecosystems and negatively impact water quality, wildlife populations, and other natural resources. Virginia's citizens can improve the situation by not planting or spreading invasive plants, by removing invasives on their own properties, and by helping to remove them from parks and other public areas. Help us spread more awareness and understanding to engage Virginians in these efforts.

Invasive plants are threatening Virginia's natural areas from Norfolk to the Shenandoahs. Plant invaders alter wildlife habitats and reduce biodiversity. They can kill trees, picture kudzu climbing to the tops of trees, and cost money, like hydrilla depressing fisheries or getting caught in boat props. But volunteers like you can make a difference. In 2009, More than 400 volunteers contributed more than 1300 hours of service and removed more than 250 bags of invasive plants. In 2010, more than 300 volunteers contributed more than 750 hours of service in works sites covering more than 50 acres. Their service and additional in-kind donations are valued at more than $15,000. We need your support again in 2011.

For more information, see link.