National Invasive Species Awareness Week (NISAW) raises awareness about invasive species, the threat they pose, and what can be done to prevent their spread. The term "invasive" is used for aggressive species that grow and reproduce rapidly, displace native species, and cause significant disturbance to the areas in which they are present.
The North Dakota Parks & Recreation Department works hard to prevent the spread of invasive species in North Dakota. In the campgrounds, the agency provides locally sourced firewood in order to reduce the spread of emerald ash borer, a beetle that feeds on ash trees. Throughout park properties, the agency also sprays for noxious and invasive weeds annually to prevent and reduce the spread of invasive species. These weeds can choke out native species and habits that animals need for survival and impact forage production. This year the department has partnered with the North Dakota Game & Fish Department on installing a new Aquatic Nuisance Species (ANS) spraying station at Lake Metigoshe State Park. This will allow anglers to rinse their boats off to help prevent the spread of nonnative plants, animals, or pathogens that threaten North Dakota's waterways.
“As an agency that helps manage our state lands and waterways, we take the management and prevention of invasive species very seriously,” stated Andrea Travnicek, Director of the North Dakota Parks & Recreation Department. “We continue to work with our partners to preserve the native species and landscape our state has to offer.”
The department would like to remind visitors that they have a vital role in helping prevent the spread of invasive species across North Dakota. Clean off your boats and recreation vehicles after every use, clean off your shoes between hikes, buy local hay and firewood, and leave flowers and plants where you find them. These quick and easy tasks can have a huge impact on the fight against the spread of invasive species. To learn more about invasive species in North Dakota, visit https://gf.nd.gov/wildlife/invasives.
The mission of the North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department is to offer a diversity of recreation opportunities and sustainably manage resources.