Control Invasive Species

A few steps to follow to protect native biodiversity, by preventing the spread of exotic, invasive species.

Exotic, invasive species are organisms that arrive in an area far from their home and then succeed in surviving, reproducing, and spreading. In fact, these species become so successful in this regard that they outcompete native species in this new area, and in so doing disrupt ecosystems and habitats and reduce native biodiversity.

Each of us can help to control and reduce the spread of exotic, invasive species, and thereby help to protect native biodiversity, habitat, and ecosystems.

 

What You Can Do

After working in a wetland covered in the exotic, invasive species Purple loosestrife, a volunteer cleans her shoes to avoid spreading the plants' seeds elsewhere.

After working in a wetland covered in the exotic, invasive species Purple loosestrife, a volunteer cleans her shoes to avoid spreading the plants’ seeds elsewhere.

  1. After you go for a walk, drive, bike or boat ride through areas infested with exotic, invasive species, make an effort to clean your clothing (including shoes) and equipment before entering other areas. Avoid spreading the seeds of exotic, invasive plants.
  2. Plant native plants in your yard, and encourage your neighbors, friends and family to do the same. These plants will provide habitat and food for native species. They also will grow easily, as these species adapted to local conditions over many thousands of years.
  3. Learn to identify and control exotic, invasive plants, and then remove and properly dispose of any you find growing in your yard or neighborhood. Your efforts will help to prevent these plants from spreading elsewhere.
  4. Learn about and participate in exotic, invasive species control projects and ecological restoration projects around the region. Contact your local conservation group, conservation commission, conservation agent, or land trust to get involved.

Resources

  1. Massachusetts Prohibited Plant list
  2. Exotic, invasive plants of New England
  3. Native plants for your yard
  4. Descriptions and images of exotic, invasive marine life
  5. Learn to identify and control exotic, invasive plant species
  6. Examples of a few exotic, invasive species in the Neponset River Watershed: