Coastal ISC  

 April 2014 Newsletter

Yellow Loosestrife

I -   Coastal ISC News and Updates
II - Upcoming Events
III -Peo
ple in Action
IV - Regional News
V -   BC and International News
VI - Resources and Tidbits

Photo: Yellow Loosestrife (Lysmachia vulgaris) is a Proposed BC Prohibited Weed

I -  Coastal ISC News and Updates

Happy spring to all of you!

SAVE THE DATE, Thursday June 12th, Coastal ISC will host our Forum & Field Tour - Invasive Species: Current & Cultural at the Quw'utsun Conference Center in the beautiful Cowichan Valley. Join us in celebrating partnerships at work to reduce the threat of invasive species and catch up on the latest news  and tips from experts! Stay tuned for a list of speakers, field tour topics and locations. What better way to observe Invasive Species Week (June 9-15th)?

As the leaves unfurl around us and birds sing loudly in the morning, the sight of cherry blossoms, tulips and our native red-flowering currant are a welcomed sign of warmer days.  If you are getting ready to garden and plant seeds - please be sure to check out the Grow Me Instead brochure - these alternatives to invasive plants could save you time, money and headaches in the future. 
Coastal ISC staff and our dedicated Board of Directors have been working away this winter gearing up for a busy field season ahead.  Alison Millham has been hired on as Project Coordinator for another season; she states that "spreading the word about invasive species is rewarding because it plays a vital role in protecting the natural resources of local communities.  Many folks still don't realize the cumulative impact from having a bit of broom here or some ivy over there." 
We hope to build on last years' successful season, in which we conducted Inventories throughout our management area, treated over 5 hectares of lands containing Priority Invasive Species, responded to hundreds of invasive plant reports, hosted training workshops and offered presentations while educating the public at a number of community events,  created the Getting to Know Invasive Plants brochure, and partnered with local governments to carry out Knotweed Eradication Programs and create educational tools.
Finally, if you are undertaking invasive species project or activities, we’d love to hear about it! We believe that sharing knowledge with the community is an extremely important part of what we do and that working in partnerships are the key to solving many of our biggest challenges. So if you would like to explore the possibility of having us speak at an event, share your upcoming work party or are interested in partnering with us, simply contact

Looking forward to another successful season!


II - Upcoming Events

April 15, 2014 - Invasive Species Council of Metro Vancouver: 2014 Annual Spring Forum and AGM, North Vancouver, BC.
May 2014 - Broombusters begins Broom work parties from Campbell River to Cowichan Valley and west to Port Alberni.  Over 40 cuts will take place in May.

May 12-17, 2014 -  The Pacific Invasives Learning Network:Impact of climate change on biological invasions and population distributions, Banff, Alberta.
May 14 – 15, 2014 - Columbia Mountains Institute of Applied Ecology: Resource Roads in BC: Environmental Challenges at the Landscape Level, Nelson, BC.
June 9-15, 2014 - Invasive Species Week in BC
June 12, 2014 - SAVE THE DATE! Coastal ISC 9th Annual Forum, Field Tour, AGM and Evening Social, Cowichan, BC. Details coming soon.
October 6-10, 2014 - Society for Ecological Restoration Great Basin: Collaborative Restoration, Redmond, Oregon.

October 28-30, 2014 - Bi-Annual Integrated Vegetation Managment Association of BC Conference: New Technology, New Techniques, Richmond BC. (link to jpg)
III - People in Action

At the 2014 Invasive Species Council (IPC) of BC's Annual Forum, Carolyn Richman, of the Capital Region Invasive Species Partnership (CRISP) presented on how their working group was developed to include land owners and key partners.  As well she spoke about the training and resources for CRISP members, their educational outreach program, disposal issues and the pilot focus on knotweed. Challenges being overcome include gradually obtaining funding and managing the vast area they represent.  Overall this success story may inspire other communities!

From Broombusters:
The sun is shining today and it makes me think of....cutting broom! Having checked some of the areas where broom was cut last year to find these sites looking really good. A few plants have come back and there are also some new sprouts - but nothing like the broom we had at the beginning of the season.
There are are LOTS of broom cuts planned for May - from Campbell River to Cowichan Valley, west to Port Alberni, with over 40 cuts planned -  check website for details:
Once those yellow blooms start appearing we'll swing into full broombusting mode!
IV - Regional News

Eradicating invasive plants an ongoing battle in Alberni
by  Susan Quinn - Alberni Valley News, March 9, 2014
Eradicating invasive plants is an ongoing process for the City of Port Alberni’s public works department, says horticulture/ parks superintendent Jacob Colyn.
The city attacks invasive and noxious weeds on three fronts, although there is no specific funding set aside for the task.
For noxious or poisonous weeds such as hogweed and Japanese knotweed, the city will use a backhoe to dig up offending weeds and properly dispose of them by bagging them and burying them in the landfill, Colyn said. Read the full story here 
Burnaby garden centre commended for action on European Fire Ants
by the Invasive Species Council of BC, April 3, 2014
The Invasive Species Council of BC commends the Burnaby garden centre which recently went public about its troubles with an infestation of European Fire Ants. GardenWorks talked to local media to highlight why it’s so important for gardeners and the horticultural industry to be aware of the dangers of invasive species to our province.
We believe that province-wide cooperation and coordination is needed.... Read the full story here 
Feral pigs: B.C. allows hunting 'anywhere and at any time'
by CBC News, March 20, 2014
Licensed hunters can now take aim at feral pigs in British Columbia, which have been officially designated as invasive, problem wildlife.
The animals, which can be aggressive and weigh up to 350 kilograms, have been included on a provincial list that allows them to be hunted "anywhere and at any time" by anyone possessing a valid hunting licence.
In a written statement, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, said feral pigs are an invasive species that go after the eggs of ground-nesting birds, that competed with native wildlife, and that can cause damage to native vegetation and crops. Read the full story here
V -  BC and International News

Alert issued over European fire-ant invasion in B.C.
by Susan Lazaruk, The Province, April 1, 2014
Homeowners are being urged to remain vigilant against an invasion of European fire ants, an aggressive, stinging pest that is establishing colonies across Vancouver and Victoria.
The reddish-brown ants were first identified in B.C. in 2010 and have been found in 24 areas, said Prof. Rob Higgins of Thompson Rivers University, an expert on the ant.
“There’s a lot more out there,” he said. Read the full article here
Boat Infested with Invasive Mussels Stopped at BC Border
by Invasive Species Council of BC, published March 24, 2014, 
OSOYOOS—Detection, team work and new provincial regulations successfully worked together to prevent a mussel infested boat from entering BC last week.
On the evening of March 12th, 2014 provided the first test of BC’s invasive mussel emergency response plan. At the Osoyoos border crossing, a Canada Border Services Agency guard inspected an incoming commercially hauled boat and found visible mussels on the hull. Read the full article here 

Invasive pest, plants cost US economy
by RFD-TV News Staff, April 7, 2014
The U. S. Department of Agriculture has proclaimed April as invasive plant pest and disease awareness month.
The cost to the U.S. economy from invasive plant pests and disease is staggering. Researchers say it’s almost $120 billion a year.
“Each year invasive species cost America dearly. They damage crops, kill trees, and cause for costly response. But also, invasive species could lead to closing markets to U.S. products from infested areas,” said USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Deputy Administrator Osama El-Lissy.
That’s why USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, or APHIS, is devoting the month of April to telling the public about invasive pests and how they can affect consumer products. Read the full article here 
Invasive Asian Carp Found in "Surprising" Location

by Brian Howard, National Geographic, March 11, 2014
One of the most reviled invasive fish in North America has been unexpectedly found in the upper Mississippi River, raising concern about its spread, federal scientists announced Tuesday.
The invasive Asian carp has been breeding and spreading across the U.S. for more than 20 years, "but we were surprised that they got up so far," says Cindy Kolar, a science adviser on invasive species for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).
On Tuesday, USGS said its scientists found Asian carp eggs, including late-stage embryos nearly ready to hatch, in samples taken in 2013 from the upper Mississippi River in Lynxville.  Read the full story here
The Joy of Cooking Invasive Species
by Brian Barth, Modern Farmer, March 27, 2014
Eating your enemies used to be the stuff of cannibal horror movies. Now it's actually condoned by many authorities and can be practiced openly at barbecues, potlucks and picnics. As long as we're talking about consuming invasive plants and animals, that is.
Andrew Deines, a post-doctoral researcher who studies invasive species at Michigan State University, has been known to eat African caterpillars for breakfast and enjoys invasive garlic mustard ice cream for dessert.
Deines heads up a group of biologists from around the world who run, a site that tracks news in the field and provides seasoned advice on controlling invasive species by dining on them. Read the full article here

VI - Resources and Tidbits

How will you celebrate Earth Day?
There are events happening in almost every community, including the online community these days.  Here are a couple of offerings:

The Robert Bateman Center celebrates Earth Day. To express our love of nature the gallery is offering free admission ALL DAY (10am -5pm) on April 22, 2014! Find out more here.
Many communities are extending celebrations this year to celebrate Earth Week!  In Victoria you are invited to join the Third Annual Creatively United for the Planet Arts & Sustainability Festival, taking place on April 25 & 26, 2014.  Activities are scheduled for Friday (7-9:30 pm) & Saturday (noon-8:30 pm) at St. Ann’s Academy, 835 Humboldt Street, Victoria BC.  If you are in the Victoria area, come out to celebrate where you live, eat, work, play and study! 
 On the Lighter Side:

Why do melons have fancy weddings?
- Because they cantaloupe!
New gardeners learn by by trowel and error.
"A weed is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except for learning how to grow in rows."   -  Doug Larson

- Gary Larson
Thank you for helping to Spread the Word, not the (invasive) Species!

Coastal ISC Staff and Partners in Action!

Jenny Balke on Denman
Island removing Spartina

Jen Grenz of MVIPC
demonstrates knotweed
stem injection

Coastal ISC Staff investigate invasive plants