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Please consider participating in the 2014 Secchi Dipin
June 28 - July 20

(click here for info)

Learning about Aquatic Invasive Species

Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) are plants and animals that have been introduced into new ecosystems, resulting in harm to the habitat or species there, as well as human use of those resources. Invading species often displace beneficial native species, and reduce overall biodiversity. Recognizing new invasions early can allow for prompt control efforts, and perhaps even eradication, protecting the environment and reducing costs. A number of aquatic invasive species (both plants and animals) are already found in Rhode Island's waters, and preventing their spread to additional waterbodies requires us all to be aware and vigilent.

Aquatic plants, often called "weeds" when they grow at densities that interfere with swimming, fishing and crowd out native species, are an important part of our lake and river ecosystems. Plants not only provide food for many animals, but also hide young fish and take up excess nutrients preventing algal blooms. Unfortunately non-native plants that are introduced into our waterbodies do not typically have their natural predators to help keep a natural balance, often resulting in nuisance conditions.

Click here to view a slide presentation on "Identification and Management of Aquatic Invasive Species"

Boaters, sailors, anglers, paddlers …every time you leave a launch:

INSPECT boat, trailers and equipment and REMOVE plants, animals, and mud.

  • DRAIN water from your boat, motor, bilge, live wells, and bait containers.
  • DON'T MOVE live fish away from a waterbody.
  • DISPOSE of unwanted bait in the trash.
  • RINSE boat and equipment with hot or high pressure water OR dry for at least 5 days.

Eating invasives - New "management" technique Click here to learn more

Online sources for more information:

RI Department of Environmental Management - Aquatic Invasive Species http://www.dem.ri.gov/programs/benviron/water/quality/surfwq/aisindex.htm

RI Department of Environmental Management Factsheets:

RI Marine & Estuarine Invasive Species Site - Narragansett Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve: http://www.rimeis.org/

RI Coastal Resources Management Council Invasive Species: http://www.crmc.ri.gov/invasives.html

Non-Native Invasive Freshwater Aquatic Plants Found in Rhode Island ans Neighboring States (pdf): http://www.uri.edu/ce/wq/ww/Plants/aquatics_handbook_2011.pdf

University of Rhode Island Cooperative Extension's Watershed Watch Aquatic Plant Survey Manual (pdf): http://www.uri.edu/ce/wq/ww/Publications/AquaticPlantProtocol.pdf

Additional Resources for Information on Aquatic Invasive Species (pdf): http://www.uri.edu/ce/wq/ww/Plants/Resources-Plants.pdf

New York Invasives Channel on You Tube: Each month, a featured presentation is posted (and archived) http://www.youtube.com/NYinvasives

National Aquatic Invasive Species Database (now part of the New York Invasive Species Clearinghouse): http://nyis.info/ai/default.aspx

A Guide to Selected Invasive Non-native Aquatic Species in Massachusetts:
http://www.mass.gov/dcr/watersupply/lakepond/downloads/aquatic_species.pdf

Eutrophication and Aquatic Plant Management in Massachusetts:
http://www.mass.gov/dcr/watersupply/lakepond/downloads/main_geir.pdf

Center for Aquatic Invasive Plants (Universtiy of Florida, IFAS): http://plants.ifas.ufl.edu/

A Field Guide to Invasive Plants of Aquatic and Wetlands Habitats for Michigan: http://web4.msue.msu.edu/mnfi/education/AquaticsFieldGuide.pdf

A guide to aquatic plants identification & management (Minnesota Department of Natural Resources): http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/shorelandmgmt/apg/index.html

Guide To Aquatic and Wetland Plants of West Virginia: http://www.wvu.edu/~agexten/wildlife/803.pdf

Aquatic Plants, Algae & Lakes (Department of Ecology, Washington State): http://www.ecy.wa.gov/Programs/wq/links/plants.html

Pesticides and Aquatic Animals: A Guide to Reducing Impacts on Aquatic Systems: http://www.ext.vt.edu/pubs/waterquality/420-013/420-013.html

A Field Guide To Aquatic Invaders (Minnesota Sea Grant Program): http://www.seagrant.umn.edu/ais/fieldguide

Identifying and Managing Aquatic Plants in Ponds (video series):
http://extension.psu.edu/water/resources/videos/aquatic-plants

Aquatic Plants and Algae Publications (Penn State Cooperative Extension):
http://extension.psu.edu/water/resources/publications/pond-management/aquatic-plants

National Invasives Species Information Center - USDA:
http://www.invasivespeciesinfo.gov/aquatics/controlplans.shtml

Narragansett Bay Estuary Program Bay Science - Marine Invasive Species:
http://www.nbep.org/bay-science-marine-invasive.html

Invasive Species of Long Island Sound: http://www.seagrant.uconn.edu/whatwedo/ais/listour.php

Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force, an intergovernmental organization dedicated to preventing and controlling aquatic nuisance species. This site has links to educational resources as well as to an "Experts" database: http://www.anstaskforce.gov/default.php

 

Links to resources that show you how to safely dine on invasive species:

 Questions, comments, or problems with the website? Email our Webmaster. Last updated 7/2/2014.
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