WNY PRISM recently partnered with the Town of Amherst to further develop an educational campaign aimed at raising awareness on invasive plant species found in our local communities. This campaign was launched by the Invasive Species Plant Committee (ISPC) which was created last fall by the town Amherst to unite both residents and employees on issues surrounding invasive plants impacting the community.
On Tuesday, June 14th, Andrea Locke, WNY PRISM Coordinator, was invited to lead a workshop for town officials of the highway and parks department of Amherst to focus on the identification of species and methods to prevent the spread of invasive plants. Several prominent plant species found in our area were profiled during the workshop such as canada thistle, phragmites, black and pale swallow-wort, and knotweeds. The workshop was aimed at emphasizing the importance of invasive species management in our region and simple ways maintenance crews can minimize the spread of these plants by identifying infested areas and regularly cleaning their equipment.
In addition, director of WNY PRISM, Dr. Christopher Pennuto, is in the process of installing Boot-Brush Stations throughout the region and one is scheduled to be placed at Amherst State Park this summer. Boot Brush Stations are an easy way to not only educate residents and park visitors, but also prevent the spread of invasive plants species by cleaning off seed and plant materials before leaving one natural area and entering another. Dr. Pennuto is also conducting an experiment to see what is left behind at the boot-brush station, in order to test the effectiveness of this prevention method. He and one of his students will be collecting the seed and growing it out in the greenhouse at Buffalo State.
The next Invasive Species Plant Committee meeting will be held in Amherst this fall and will be open to the public. Click the link below to see the article in the Amherst Bee highlighting the partnership between the town of Amherst and WNY PRISM!
This article was written by Emily Dyett, WNY PRISM Invasive Species Management Assistant.