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Top Ten Best Management Practices for Invasive Species

Click to report suspected finds of invasive species

Best Management Practices

The "Top Ten" List

1. Develop an organizational Invasive Species Stategy:

  • Goals
  • Objectives and Priorities
  • Tactics - Policies and Procedures on:
    • Employee education & training
    • User education
    • Contracting & sourcing
    • Monitoring
    • Prevention
    • Control projects
  • Schedule regular assessments - Measure and celebrate your success!

2. Create and maintain an IS knowledge base:

  • Maps - Where are current infestations
  • Reporting & mapping process for staff and users
  • Documentation of control projects - exact location, treatment protocol, dates, herbicide concentrations, weather and soil conditions, etc. - and assessment of results initially and after additional growing seasons

3. Think ahead. Pre-plan major land development or maintenance activities:

  • Avoid disturbing heavily infested areas when possible
  • Pre-treat areas that must be disturbed well in advance
  • If possible, conduct such activities when seeds are not easily movable
  • If possible use existing roads, trails, landings, staging areas, and designated equipment cleaning areas

4. Use native plants and seeds - and make sure they are from "weed-free" sources:

5. Use uncontaminated construction/landscaping material (mulch, fill, gravel, straw, etc.):

  • Find certified or guaranteed sources when possible Indiana Certified Weed Free Program
  • Use trusted sources whenever possible
  • Ask for guarantees or make-good provisions in sourcing contracts
  • Look to create on site sources if possible
  • Monitor stock piles regularly

6. Keep tools, equipment, vehicles and clothing clean:

  • Require contractors to bring clean vehicles and equipment to your site
  • Designate contained areas for cleaning and disposal
  • Educate and encourage users to inspect and clean clothing, equipment, pets, etc. before and after entry

7. Have a long-term plan for managing Invasives:

  • "An ounce of prevention..."
  • Prioritize locations and species - taking into account severity of infestation, degree of invasiveness, feasibility of control, "value" of habitat at risk, etc.
  • "Optimize" treatment timing and technique
  • Evaluate, measure, and document success

8. Monitor disturbed locations and high risk areas:

  • Monitor regularly and frequently
  • Especially important following natural disasters and major development or maintenance projects

9. Require contractors to follow BMPs:

  • Incorporate BMP requirements into RFPs and contracts
  • Inspect and document infestations before and after contractor activity
  • Ask for guarantees or make-good provisions

10. Educate recreational users (and neighbors) on Invasive Species BMPs:

  • Provide basic education when possible:
    • What are invasive species?
    • Why are they bad?
    • How to identify key species
  • Offer a mechanism for reporting invasives
  • Provide cleaning stations at key entry and exit points
  • Regulate entry of infested material when possible (campfire wood, hay, bait, etc.)

And one to grow on: Actively look for funding opportunities, partnerships, and volunteers to assist in preventing and reducing invasive species!

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