What is an invasive species?
Invasive species are introduced species of animals, insects, plants, fungi, pathogens, and other organisms that if not controlled spread to negatively impact resources. Agriculture, gardens and landscaped areas, and natural resources including fish, game, berries, and other vegetation are often what land managers seek to protect from invasive species impacts. If management does not occur significant changes to affected ecosystems, farms and landscaped areas can cost land owners, managers, and land users significant money to manage or to supplement lost resource use. For more information on invasive species visit the Alaska Division of Agriculture and Alaska Department of Fish and Game web pages. A list of non-native plants and profiles that describe their invasive nature as well as an interactive map of places non-native plants are documented is found at the Alaska Exotic Plant Information Clearinghouse.
Aquatic Invasive Species Information
Elodea species are an emerging issue for aquatic invasive species management in Alaska. The Alaska Division of Agriculture is leading efforts to manage Elodea. Get more information and find out how to help here.
For additional information on protecting your waters from all aquatic invasive species go here.
Photo of Elodea in the Chena Slough courtesy Fairbanks Soil and Water Conservation District.
Gardening and landscaping
Noxious and invasive weeds, plant diseases, and insect pests are accidentally spread through garden and landscape activities. We can help by planting alternatives to known invasive ornamental plants, inspecting potted plants for unwanted weeds, and ensuring purchased plants are pest and disease free. For more information on landscaping plants to avoid and their alternatives see the Division of Agriculture brochure and the Extension Service publication "Don't Plant a Problem".
Report invasive species locations and get pest identification help
Extension staff and faculty around the state work with partners to identify thebugs, weeds and plant diseases that are affecting your garden, farms or wild plants. We encourage sightings of priority invasive species and curious observations. To access this free service simply fill out the online form, including pictures of the pest, here.
For questions about invasive fish, marine life, and animals call the Alaska Department of Fish and Game at 1-877-invasiv (1-877-468-2748)
Get your free pocket weed guide!
Need a pocket field identification booklet for invasive weeds in Alaska to know what that weed is in your yard, garden, farm, or to help land managers document invasive weeds on public lands. Contact us for a guide here.
You can also download the pocket weed guide online at the Forest Service website.
Annual Invasive Species Workshop
The 2014 workshop is scheduled for October 28-30 in the City of Anchorage at the Anchorage Marriott Hotel.
The Anchorage Borough has an active invasive species management group which, in conjuction with various other partners, works through CANWIN (Citizens Against Noxious Weeds Invading the North). Anchorage offers a unique perspective on invasive species management considering the it is the largest urban area in the state and has a variety of invasive species management issues ranging from aquatic species such as Northern Pike and Elodea to upland species such as European bird cherry and thistles. This year's conference will host a variety of topics highlighting invasive species management and science in Southcentral Alaska as well as emerging issues statewide.
For more information about the conference visit our workshop page.