Friday, December 21, 2007

Which candidate do you think understands Invasive Species?

I invite you to vote on which candidate you think understands the issues of invasive species best. Who would be the best person to bring all parties to the table for a common discussion about invasive species; who would support extreme points of views from any interested group or view point? Who do you think could best manage the issues surrounding invasive species on the national stage? Vote for the invasive species candidate which best serves your concerns.

I will attempt to find position or policy statements on or about invasive species from each candidate. If you find one please let me know so that I can add it.

"Secure our Natural Heritage for Future Generations. At every opportunity, George Bush has put narrow corporate interests ahead of regular families, causing new threats to our nation's great wildlife habitats. Edwards believes that protecting our natural heritage for future generations to enjoy is among our highest duties. He will protect much-needed resources for our national park, forest and wildlife refuge systems, restore balance to federal land management and protect America from invasive species."

"John McCain believes that we are vested with a sacred duty to be proper stewards of the resources upon which the quality of American life depends. Ensuring clean air, safe and healthy water, sustainable land use, ample greenspace - and the faithful care and management of our natural treasures, including our proud National Park System - is a patriotic responsibility."

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Invasive Species kudzu visits southwest; decides to stay

I find it interesting that some stakeholders continue to ask, correctly, for the science behind and underlying an invasive species, or perhaps invasive species issues in general. Not being a scientist, I am condemned to rely on my senses which could of course could and do lead me wildly astray from time to time. Noting that kudzu has made it to Arizona, I wonder if we all could agree that it is an example of a invasive species, and if that is true, could we use some of its attributes to help catagorize some other invasive species. More importantly, how much of a geographic area does an introduced species have to cover before wde can agree it is a problem? This goes to the question of EDDR, early detection and rapid response. Imagine the cost benefits of removing kudzu before it ate the confederacy. This nicely spills over into defintions of native, alien, exotic, weed and harm of which I have previously written much/

ARIZONA WEED NOTES 11 Dec 2007 Phoenix, AZ

ARIZONA KUDZU – One year UpDate
[ By Dr. Ed Northam, Weed Biologist, University of Arizona
Cooperative Extension – Phoenix, AZ 602/470-8086 ext 339
In September 2006, Arizona’s first reported population of Kudzu
[ Pueraria montana (Lour.) Merr. ] was discovered in Huachuca
City, Cochise County.
During early October 2006, plant samples collected from that unusual, sprawling, densely leaved, woody vine, plus photos by Jeffrey Myers, AZ Dept. of Agriculture, was enough evidence for Dr. Ed Northam, Invasive Plants Program Manager, University of Arizona Cooperative Extension Office, Maricopa County to conclude that Arizona had a population of Kudzu. Dr. Kelly Steele (plant taxonomist, AZ State University Polytechnic) also confirmed the initial vegetative diagnosis. DNA sequence analysis of leaf samples from Huachuca City by Dr. Martin F. Wojciechowski, Associate Professor, ASU Tempe, School of Life Sciences, matched published Kudzu DNA sequences. Kudzu attracts attention from Arizona plant scientists and land managers because this foreign vine has demonstrated its ability to dominate and smother both land and vegetation. Mature pine trees, roadsides, telephone poles landscape plantings in southeastern states have been buried under Kudzu’s invasive

Because of Kudzu’s reputation as a biotic invader, AZ Dept. of Agriculture personnel initiated an eradication process when identification was completed. This control measure is based on
a new herbicide from Dow AgroSciences called Milestone VM. Vince Aguiar, Dow’s range and pasture vegetation specialist for Arizona provided weed management expertise for eradication treatments that began in November 2006. Milestone was applied to the Huachuca City Kudzu at a rate of 7 oz. per acre. This application was repeated in March and June 2007. Visual estimates in August 2007 indicated >97 percent of Kudzu biomass died as a result of those three treatments (see photos provided by Arizona Dept of Agriculture).
Even though the Kudzu infestation appears to be controlled, treatments are planned for 2008 to complete eradication and will continue until new shoots cease to emerge; then occasional monitoring is needed to insure none of the underground root reserves survive and clone new Kudzu plants. Need information on how to identify Kudzu, contact ( ).

Thursday, December 13, 2007

NOBANIS Fact sheets on Invasive Species from NAL Site

From the National Agricultral Library site, we find that invasive species are not an "American" problem, and certainly, this information goes far in countering those who claim there is no science or problem.

"Fact sheets on Invasive Alien Species
The NOBANIS project provides fact sheets on some of the invasive alien species of the region, covering both animals and plant as well as microorganisms. We are currently in the process of uploading the fact sheets - so please visit this page regularly.
The NOBANIS fact sheets

The species profiles below follow the same format and provide information on the biology, ecology and distribution of the invasive alien species as well as on the impact of the species in the recipient habitats. Furthermore, management approaches are suggested. Important resources such as contact persons, links and references are also presented in the fact sheets. The fact sheets are written by experts of the region and all fact sheets are furthermore refereed by scientific experts from all NOBANIS (North European and Baltic Network) countries - thus ensuring that the collated regional knowledge is reflected in the fact sheets.
The fact sheets presented below are not to be regarded as a consensus list of "worst invasive alien species" for the region. The fact sheets fall in several categories, some can indeed regarded as the worst invaders of the entire region, while others are only a problem in one or a few countries. In each case the impact and status of the species should be clear from the fact sheet. The fact sheets are organised as pdf-files with bookmarks for the 6 section "headings.

1. Acer negundo »
2. Acer pseudoplatanus »
3. Amelanchier spicata »
4. Anguillicola crassus »
5. Anthriscus sylvestris »
6. Aphanomyces astaci »
7. Arion lusitanicus »
8. Arthurdendyus triangulatus »
9. Azolla filiculoides »
10. Bunias orientalis »
11. Cameraria ohridella »
12. Campylopus introflexus »
13. Castor canadensis »
14. Cercopagis pengoi »
15. Chattonella cf. verruculosa »
16. Craspedacusta sowerbyi »
17. Crassostrea gigas »
18. Dreissena polymorpha »
19. Eriocheir sinensis »
20. Fallopia japonica »
21. Galinsoga quadriradiata »
22. Gyrodactylus salaris »
23. Heracleum mantegazzianum »
24. Heracleum sosnowskyi »
25. Homarus americanus »
26. Impatiens glandulifera »
27. Lepomis gibbosus »
28. Lupinus nootkatensis »
29. Lupinus polyphyllus »
30. Marenzelleria neglecta »
31. Melampsoridium hiratsukanum »
32. Mustela vison »
33. Neogobius melanostomus »
34. Nyctereutes procyonoides »
35. Oncorhynchus mykiss »
36. Ondatra zibethicus »
37. Pacifastacus leniusculus »
38. Paralithodes camtschaticus »
39. Phoxinus phoxinux »
40. Phytophthora ramorum »
41. Pinus mugo »
42. Pontogammarus robustoides »
43. Procyon lotor »
44. Prunus serotina »
45. Pseudorasbora parva »
46. Rosa rugosa »
47. Salmo salar »
48. Sambucus nigra »
49. Sander lucioperca »
50. Sargassum muticum »
51. Senecio inaequidens »
52. Solidago canadensis »
53. Spartina anglica »
54. Teredo navalis »
55. Trachemys scripta »

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Invasive Species Fill my Time

I thought I should post something about my activities on and about invasive species issues as way of apology for having been rather absent from regular writings on this web log.

First, I have been well engaged in the efforts of the Sustainable Sites project serving on a technical sub committee and recently back from a meeting at the LBJ Wild Flower Center with the entire membership of the several sub committees. Please take the time to review the draft now available for public comment at Invasive species conversations sometimes seem to suggest that we should revert to completely “natural” landscapes, without actually working through some of the human and development design implications and needs. Sustainable landscapes would address eco-service considerations as well as design needs. And invasive species would be specifically considered and motivation supplied to find alternatives.

Second, I recently returned from a meeting at the Missouri Botanical Garden which set up a steering committee under the guidance of Dr. Peter Raven to assess the need and start the process to create a Cultivated Flora of North America. I look forward to working with the steering committee and writing about this in greater detail in the near future. Before we can legislate or regulate or even educate, we will need to know what it is that we are dealing with.

Third, I have been working with Dr. Thomas Elias of the National Arboretum to offer a conference/workshop on gaps in knowledge in invasive species science. I hope to write about topics to be considered in the near future. Cultivars and sterility will top the list for consideration as well as discussion about the need for a Cultivated Flora. In addition I hope to work in conversation about climate change and the implication for invasive species.

Fourth, I am concerned that the USDA Systematic Entomology Laboratory position at the National Agricultural Research Center in Beltsville (see links below) in Scale Insect Systematics (formerly filled by Dr. Douglass Miller) has been abolished. The duties associated with this position are critical to US biosecurity and pest management, because the USDA must be able to identify and provide information on these highly invasive pests.

And fifth, I continue to be working to find answers and support for the continuing decline of funding for both BARC and the National Agricultural Library. I hope to find sometime in the next week or so to write in greater depth on each of these topics.

Invasive Species Complexities: A Wicked Inconvenience
Invasive Species (Kudzu) Meets Fox News
National Agricultural Research Center; Invasive Species, Climate Change & Poison Ivy
BARC: Funding for Research Continues to Fall
BARC-National Agricultural Research Center Alliance NARABHomeland security; E. coli, and diminished funding & BARC