Apr 12, 2016

SLELO PRISM Partners Adopt 2016 Work Plan

Unique natural landscapes along the Eastern Lake Ontario Region are host to rare, threatened and endangered species of plants and animals. Many of these aquatic and terrestrial places are being threatened by invasive species. Invasive species are non-native plants and animals that may cause environmental and economic harm and in some cases pose human health threats. To address this, a group of over sixteen partner organizations in a five county region have adopted a plan of work to mitigate the ongoing threat from invasive species. Formally known as the St. Lawrence, Eastern Lake Ontario – Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management (SLELO-PRISM), this group is one of eight regional partnerships throughout New York State who’s mission is to protect our lands and waters from the threat of invasive species.

Hosted by The Central and Western New York Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, the SLELO-PRISM is now in their fifth formal year of addressing invasive species threats. The partnership has representatives from various organizations throughout a five county area who have recently developed a robust annual plan of work for the 2016 field season. The plan will address invasive species issues such as spread prevention, early detection, strategic response and ecological restoration which in turn will help to preserve critical lands, waters and natural areas in the region.

According to Rob Williams, Invasive Species Program Coordinator - “Invasive species pose a serious threat to the diversity of our natural areas, our economy and our health – Our partners have adopted a collaborative work plan that will mitigate the impact of invasive species”. Some of the target invasive species that the SLELO partners plan to address include terrestrial plants such as swallow-wort, giant hogweed, and knotweed along with aquatic plants such as water chestnut and hydrilla. Forest pests to include the Emerald Ash Borer and Hemlock Woolly Adelgid are also in focus. Williams goes on to say “some of these species are not yet found in our region, and it is important that we remain proactive”. Last year the partnership was instrumental in protecting dozens of acres of freshwater resources, wetland habitats, forested lands and globally rare alvar lands.

For more information about upcoming PRISM events or for information on invasive species in our area, visit the SLELO website at www.sleloinvasives.org