Landscape-Scale Invasive Plant Control Projects




Chris Evans, Illinois Wildlife Action Plan
Nick Seaton and Caleb Grantham, Southern Illinois Invasive Species Strike Team, The Nature Conservancy
Cheryl Millett, Central Florida Lygodium Strategy, The Nature Conservancy
Carmen Chapin, Great Lakes Exotic Plant Management Team, National Park Service

Presentation Summary:

Strategic Management of Priority Invasive Species: Coordinated Control through the Southern Illinois Invasive Species Strike Team Caleb Grantham and Nick Seaton

The Nature Conservancy, in partnership with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the River to River Cooperative Weed Management Area, and the USDA Forest Service Northeast Area State and Private Forestry Program developed the Southern Illinois Invasive Species Strike Team (ISST) in 2008. The Strike Team deploys a highly trained, mobile force of two plant management specialists who assist with the mapping, monitoring, and controlling of invasive exotic plant species at state dedicated nature preserves, state parks, and adjacent private lands that serve as pathways onto these properties in the 11 southernmost counties of Illinois. Once a risk has been identified, ISST also serves as a Rapid Response Team. Applying the Early Detection & Rapid Response (EDRR) approach to invasive species management greatly improves the likelihood that invasions will be addressed successfully while populations are still localized and containable. Given the high quality of the sites in the project area, it is crucial to inhibit the spread of invasive exotic plant species to ensure the existence of diverse, naturally functioning ecosystems only found in Southern Illinois.

Central Florida Lygodium Strategy: A Partnership Approach to Stopping the Northward Spread of Old World climbing fern

Cheryl Millett has been a Biologist on the Lake Wales Ridge with the Florida Chapter of The Nature Conservancy for 10 years. She specializes in growing landscape-scale partnership projects over which she has no authority and transferring them to be continued by partners, such as Jay Watch, now run by Florida Audubon, and Python Patrol, now a program of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. She currently coordinates the Ocala Longleaf Local Implementation Team, the Heartland Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area, and the Central Florida Lygodium Strategy.

Moving/Targets: The National Parks Service Exotic Plant Management Team

Carmen Chapin is the Program Coordinator for The National Park Service Great Lakes Exotic Plant Management Team. The program augments invasive plant control efforts in 10 national parks in the western Great Lakes. In addition to running an on-the-ground program, Carmen works to promote cooperative invasive plant management efforts locally in northern Wisconsin through the Northwoods Cooperative Weed Management Area and regionally though efforts in the Midwest Invasive Plant Network.