By working together, this past year has brought many successes in our efforts to protect our lands and waters from the threat of invasive species. Even with pandemic protocols still in place, Team SLELO and our partners made many accomplishments in 2021 that we wanted to share with you!
We’ve surveyed over 150 highly probable areas for invasive species threatening our region- finding 0 tier-one species and 2 notable natives. We’ve intercepted 436 aquatic invasive species and conducted 9,648 watercraft inspections preventing the spread of AIS across the SLELO region and beyond. We’ve suppressed 6 priority species at 16 Priority Conservation Areas. We’ve engaged 58,708 via education and outreach efforts and events. 3 local communities have participated in our Urban Forest Sustainability Initiative by planting native and non-invasive trees. 11,449 parasitoid wasps were released as part of a biocontrol program for the invasive emerald ash borer. 100% defoliation of invasive swallow-wort was observed at 1 out of 4 of the Hypena opulenta biocontrol research cages that were monitored in the SLELO region.
All of this work, combined with the work of our partners, has protected 5.7 million acres of connected lands and waters from the impacts of invasive species. Kudos to our team and all our partners & volunteers!