This summer, Lower Trent Conservation in partnership with the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (O.F.A.H.) are working together to educate the public on invasive species as well as monitoring populations of invasive species in the Lower Trent watershed.
Every year non-native species are introduced to Ontario’s waters and forests through a variety of pathways. These invaders have profound ecological, economic, and recreational impacts on our ecosystems.
Unfortunately, once established, these invasive species can be impossible to eliminate. The active participation of the public is vital to prevent the spread of these invaders.
Listed below are some tips you can follow to limit the spread of invasive species!
When adding new plants to your garden, consider purchasing plants that are native to the area. By buying native, you are preventing the potential spread of invasive plants. If you already have invasive species in your garden, keeping them away from natural areas and/or disposing of them properly (i.e. in the garbage, not by compost) can make huge a difference.
Look Before You Leave
When you load up for the cottage or a camping trip, you could unknowingly be carrying stowaways. Mud left on equipment, bikes or ATVs could carry seeds of invasive species, such as Garlic Mustard and Dog-strangling Vine. Even seeds stuck in a beloved pets fur could aid in the spread. Take a few moments to inspect and clean your belongings before moving to a new location.
Tree-killing insects and diseases can lurk in firewood. These insects and diseases can’t move far on their own, but when people move firewood they can jump hundreds of miles. New infestations destroy our forests and cost huge sums of money to control. Buy local firewood to limit the spread.
CLEAN, DRAIN and DRY Your Boat
Clean your boat by removing visible plants and animals at the boat launch. Later wash your boat, trailer, and equipment to kill harmful species that were not visible at the boat launch.
Drain water from the motor, live well, bilge and transom wells while on land immediately before leaving the waterbody.
By taking the time to complete these preventative measures, you could avoid the introduction of invasive species like zebra mussels or water soldier into new waterbodies.
Don’t Dump Your Bait!
By emptying your bait bucket into water, you could be facilitating the spread of invasive species. Empty your bait bucket on land at least 10m from water. Rinse your bait bucket with hot water (greater than 50°C) before further use. Never release live bait into water, or release aquatic animals from one water body into another.
Report Sightings of Invasive Species
By reporting sightings, you could potentially alert the right people before an invader takes over. If you think you have found an invasive species, please call the Invasive Species Hotline 1-800-563-7711 or track the invader by visiting http://www.EDDMapS.org/Ontario!
We need your help to protect our natural heritage from foreign invaders. Follow these tips and make a difference!
For more information, please visit http://www.invadingspecies.com.