So, what are invasive species?
And what’s the big deal?

Invasive species have been called the bullies of the natural world. The official definition is: a species that is non-native to the ecosystem under consideration whose introduction causes or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health.

They’re plants, and they’re insects. They’re fish, and they’re animals. They’re all sorts of living things that are not native to our region and cause significant harm.

They choke our lakes and rivers. They take over our forests, fields, wetlands, and properties — and they don’t care what town or county they land in. 

Why should you care?

Say you like to boat or fish. An invasive plant such as Eurasian watermilfoil can clog up your boat’s propeller or favorite fishing spot.

Say you like to hike. Invasive insects can destroy the forests you hike through. We can all agree that’s not a good thing.

Bottom line:

They hurt recreation — think boating, hiking and hunting.

They damage habitat for plants and wildlife — think forests, lakes and rivers.

They hurt industry — think forestry, agriculture and tourism.

And they can even hurt you  —  think burns, rashes and diseases.

Invasive species are primarily spread by human activities. So this is everyone’s problem.

The good news is: you’re a big part of the solution. There are many small, simple steps you can take to protect your Adirondacks. 


Photo: ©Paul Rischmiller