Archive for the ‘Invasive Species’ category

Information on New Hydrilla Infestation in Cayuga Lake

October 7, 2011

The invasive aquatic plant Hydrilla has been found in the inlet to Cayuga Lake in Ithaca.  This may have a big impact on the lake and its native aquatic flora in the future.  For a 40 minute video about the infestation CLICK HERE.

iMap Invasives Program Now Has a Facebook Page

September 13, 2011

Get the latest information about what invasives are being mapped, where new invasives are turning up, announcements and more.  CLICK HERE to see the page and become more involved in helping iMap locate invasive species.

Screenshot of the iMap Facebook page

Our Disappearing Flora and Deer

August 1, 2011

The deleterious effect of too many deer on native vegetation has been known for some decades now and many studies have been done in New York. Unfortunately we are still unable to change policy and practices to reduce the deer herd to levels where our vegetation can recover.  Two recent articles have come out demonstrating how far we have to go to tackle this problem and save our flora from the ravages of overabundant deer.  One is a report by Tom Rawinski on his visit to see deer exclosures on Shelter Island.  The other is a pair of articles about the loss of the flora from deer herbivory in Letchworth State Park by Doug Bassett and Steph Spittal. – Steve Young

CLICK HERE for the Shelter Island story.

CLICK HERE for the Letchworth story.

CLICK HERE for a deer story from East Hampton.

Some rare plants must be fenced in at Mashomack Preserve on Shelter Island to protect them from the deer.

How Phragmites REALLY Gets Around

June 11, 2011

This photo from a saltmarsh on Long Island caught Phragmites in the act of spreading from one marsh to another. It probably happens under the cover of darkness but this crew was headed out in broad daylight.

Click for a larger image. Photo Steve Young

An Interesting and Well-done Phragmites Video From Michigan Featuring Tony Reznicek

May 18, 2011

Running time about 11 minutes. This explains the biology of the plant and the consequences of different control techniques.

Information Needed on Callery Pear Cultivars Escaping in New York

May 17, 2011

The Bradford Pear, a cultivar of the Callery Pear (Pyrus calleryana), is a popular landscaping tree in the United States. It is a widely used street tree and parking lot tree in most areas of New York State although it is not cold hardy below -28 degrees thus restricting its use in northern New York. The species was originally imported from China to serve as a rootstock for the edible pear when it became susceptible to fire blight in the early 1900s. It was also found to be a good tree for landscaping because of its compact form, profuse white flowers (but with a acrid smell), absence of fruit, and ability to survive in many harsh environmental conditions including along streets and parking lots. Eventually it was found to be susceptible to breakage after about 15-20 years and many other cultivars of the Callery pear were developed to use instead of the Bradford Pear. Even though the Bradford Pear is self-incompatible and does not produce fruit, it is compatible with other cultivars and with the original Callery pear rootstock that often grows into mature trees if left unattended. Fruit from these cultivar crosses are eaten by birds (mostly invasive starlings) and have been germinating in natural areas where they have become invasive. In the Midwest and Southeast they have become a serious problem in natural open habitats.

Is it invasive in New York State? On Long Island there are some reports that show this tree to be spreading into open natural areas.

We need to have more information and evidence that fertile trees are escaping into natural areas in New York so we can evaluate the invasiveness of this species here.
We would like to know the following:
– in what habitats does it occur?
– does it create a new vegetation layer in the habitat?
– does it have an impact on other species?
– are there large dense stands over one quarter acre?
– are the trees primarily in disturbed, weedy areas or in undisturbed areas with few weeds?
– is germination occurring?

If you have a suspicion or know of any places in New York where this tree has escaped into natural areas, please let us know by sending an e-mail to Steve Young   Thank you.

For more articles on its invasiveness see:

Use as a street tree. Photo

Trees escaping into the wild. Photo

Is Wild Chervil Exploding in New York?

May 6, 2011

Wild chervil, Anthriscus sylvestris, a non-native plant from Europe seems to be exploding in numbers and range across the state. It can be seen flowering along roadsides, fields and forest edges in late May or early June. I became aware of this plant in the late 1990s when Ed Ketchledge showed me plants that had colonized the road up to Whiteface Mountain. It is getting fairly common in some areas of the Adirondacks now. If you find it outside these areas it would be good to collect a specimen and let the local invasive species coordinator know. Or you can join iMap invasives and map it yourself. They need more data on the species – Steve Young

Here is a video on how to identify it: