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Overview of Invasive Species in Oklahoma

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1 Overview of Invasive Species in Oklahoma
Karen R. Hickman, Professor Natural Resource Ecology & Management Oklahoma State University President, Oklahoma Invasive Plant Council 1

2 Overview Terminology Background on Invasive Species
Oklahoma’s battle with invasives Sources of Invasives Why Invasives are Problematic Effects of Invasives Noxious Weed Lists (OK + neighbors) Major Challenges Oklahoma Invasive Plant Council Hydrilla Control Project 2

3 Terminology for Invasive Species
Non-native Exotic Non-indigenous species Alien Introduced Prohibited Nuisance Noxious Invasive Weeds Naturalized Encroaching Native, Invaders Poison Hemlock E. Redcedar

4 Background Since 1800, > 50,000 foreign plant and animal species established in the US Some are of benefit (i.e. food) Wheat, corn, rice, cattle, soybeans Others are problematic (i.e. noxious, invasive) USDA-APHIS (USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service) estimates annual cost: Greater than $138 billion/year In US: Focus on Agricultural Weeds & Aquatic Nuisance Species Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990: Defined an aquatic nuisance species as a nonindigenous species that “threatens the diversity or abundance of native species or the ecological stability of infested waters, or commercial, agricultural, aquacultural or recreational activities dependent on such waters.” Nepalese Browntop 4

5 Noxious vs Invasive Noxious weed = Legal Term
A noxious weed is any plant or plant product that can directly or indirectly injure or cause damage to crops (including nursery stock or plant products), livestock, poultry, or other interests of agriculture, irrigation, navigation, the natural resources of the United States, the public health, or the environment. Invasive Species = Descriptive Term Executive Order written by Clinton in 1999 was first official definition of an invasive species: “an alien species who does or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to animal or human health.” Musk Thistle 5

6 Oklahoma’s battle with invasives
: Thistle Law Prior to 2000: Concerns about out-of-control exotics, native pests, aquatic nuisance species 2000: Oklahoma’s Noxious Weed Law 2002: Eastern Redcedar Task Force 2008: Oklahoma’s Aquatic Nuisance Species Management Plan approved 2008: Oklahoma State Wildlife Action Plan 2008: Creation of Oklahoma Invasive Plant Council (OkIPC) 2010: Weed Free Hay Certification Act Feral Hogs Zebra Mussel 6

7 Sources of non-native species
- Ballast Water and ship cargo - Agriculture Use (e.g. forage species) - Horticulture and Landscaping - “Accidental” (e.g. seed contaminants) - Animal transport - Altered Land Management - Intentional release - Expansion of Range - Military exercises - Moving and depositing soil fill - Vehicular Transport Zebra mosquito Nutria 7

8 Why are we concerned with species that become invasive?
#1 Human health problems #2 Economic Effects: $$’s spent on control; eradication; loss of production and habitat #3 Displace the native community (reduce biodiversity) Alter fire frequency & intensity Hybridize with natives Create monocultures Decrease livestock production Disrupt natural nutrient & water cycles Compete with native pollinators Impact on Threatened & Endangered Species Replace complex communities with monocultures Salt Cedar 8

9 Harm to Human Health Kudzu Red Imported Fire Ants
Africanized Honey Bees 9

10 Economic Costs High cost of doing something about it!
US Fish and Wildlife Service Refuge System High cost of doing something about it! Add Michael Lusk’s slide here Source: Michael Lusk, USFWS, Washington DC Higher cost of doing nothing about it! Costs for control by project start year at 20 % annual expansion rate of weeds in Douglas County, NV.

11 Noxious Weed Lists: Oklahoma: 3 Canada Thistle Musk Thistle
Scotch Thistle Missouri : 11 Kansas: 12 Texas: 27 New Mexico: 32 Arkansas: Colorado: 71 Musk Thistle For more information: ODAFF; TPWD; TDA; OCES PSS-2776 & EPP-7318 & Roadside Weed Management (USDOT) Hydrilla 11

12 What are the MAJOR Challenges?
Within the state of Oklahoma (and elsewhere): - Adding species to the Noxious Weed/Nuisance Species Lists - Inconsistency in “ranking” among states, agencies, and organizations: Noxious; Nuisance; Prohibited; Problem species; Invasives - Incomplete mapping of occurrences Example: Kudzu - Millions of acres in the US invaded Costs US estimated $336 million/yr in lost production (not including control $$’s) Introduced to SE US in 1876 for ornamental, forage, and soil stability purposes - One of the Top 100 World’s Worst Invaders Listed as an noxious weed by 19 US states Legal in Oklahoma Kudzu

13 What are the MAJOR Challenges?
OK Biological Survey

14 OK Biological Survey; OkIPC Citizen Science
Bryan County (Durant) and Rogers County (Claremore)

15 What are the MAJOR Challenges?
Political: Prevention of introduction Legislative “issues” Internet Trade Conflicting Goals Lack of regulatory oversight (e.g. bait) Dept. of Transportation rules & regulations Jurisdiction (e.g. Purple Loosestrife) Didymo; “Rock Snot”

16 Purple Loosestrife Introduced as ornamental, crop seed
contaminant, and through ballast water from Eurasia Capable of invading any moist area From estuaries and wetlands to roadside ditches Can form extensive monocultures US spends $45 Million dollars in control ~ Rate of spread >250,000 acres/year Considered one of the Top 100 World’s Worst Invaders Pimentel et al. 2005 Thompson at el. 1987 Swearingen 2005

17 Purple Loosestrife

18 What are the MAJOR Challenges?
Political: Prevention of introduction Legislative “issues” Internet Trade Conflicting Goals Lack of regulatory oversight (e.g. bait) Dept. of Transportation rules & regulations Jurisdiction (e.g. Purple Loosestrife) Social : Valuation Neighbors # of Skilled and trained Inspectors Lack of Commitment; Agreement; Education Conflicting Goals: horticulture, landscaping, aquaculture Saltcedar; Tamarix

19 What are the MAJOR Challenges?
Ecological issues: Lack of control methods Lack of native seed Restoration efforts Fire resistances Seed sources Lack of Integrated Pest Management approaches Exotic grasses invading native rangelands Collateral damage from broad range treatment The “Unknown belowground” Biggest: Inconsistency Example: Exotic grasses (ODWC and OERB) Sericea lespedeza Giant Salvinia Bindweed

20 Sericea Lespedeza Native of eastern Asia
Brought to US in 1896 as potential forage Used for land reclamation, soil conservation, & forage production in eastern & central US Listed as a crop plant in some states (OK) Listed as a noxious weed in others (KS & CO) One person’s treasure…..

21 Oklahoma Invasive Plant Council
To facilitate efficient and effective management of invasive plants for the protection of the economic and natural resources of Oklahoma’s private and public land and water. Yellow Iris

22 Interested Parties Old World Bluestems State Agencies & Organizations:
OK Dept. of Agriculture, Food, and Forestry OK Dept of Wildlife Conservation OK Dept. of Transportation OK Farm Bureau OK Biological Survey Oklahoma-TNC OK Wheat Growers Association OK Association of Conservation Districts Osage Nation OK Native Plant Society OK Natural Areas Registry Kaw Nation University of Oklahoma Oklahoma State University University of Central Oklahoma Cooperative Fish & Wildlife Unit OK Conservation Commission OK Natural Heritage Inventory OK Recreation and Tourism OSU Extension Service Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation OK Vegetation Management Association OK Grazing Lands Association OK Association of County Commissioners OK Nursery and Landscape Association Blue Thumb Program OK Tourism OK Prescribed Fire Associations OK National Guard Troops Federal Agencies & Organizations : USDA-NRCS Bureau of Indian Affairs US Fish and Wildlife Services Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge US Army Corps of Engineers US Geological Service Dept. of Defense (Tinker) USDA-APHIS Dept. of Transportation National Association of Exotic Pest Plant Councils American Fisheries Society Society for Range Management The Nature Conservancy Others: Numerous Private Landowners & Managers Johnston Seed DOW Agrosciences DuPONT CLARKE Sunshine Nursery Holman Seed Old World Bluestems

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