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by | February 17, 2021

National Invasive Species Awareness Week is February 22 – 28

Even though it is still winter in Alaska, the dormant invasive plants are just waiting for the snow to melt, sunlight to return, and to propagate like crazy. February is a busy time for the Kenai Peninsula Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (KP-CISMA), as we compile permits, hire seasonal field technicians, and discuss logistics for the 2021 field season. We are focused on the best management techniques for eradicating harmful invasive species that threaten fish & wildlife habitat in our region, and share these resources widely. Winter is also an excellent opportunity for us to network with invasive species professionals nationwide.

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February 22 through February 28 is National Invasive Species Awareness Week (NISAW), and the North American Invasive Species Management Association (NAISMA) will be hosting a series of webinars on invasive species prevention, removal, funding opportunities and outreach best practices.

The goal of NISAW is to raise awareness of the problems that invasive species cause to human health, ecosystems, and our economy; and provide resources and opportunities for individuals, organizations, and government leaders to be a part of the solution.

The Washington Invasive Species Council is also hosting a statewide awareness week and virtual events in conjunction with NISAW. Watch webinars on feral swine, spotted lanternflies, aquatic invasives, and Asian giant hornets. Learn about the simple things you can do to prevent the spread of invasive species!

“The public is key to the state’s success in the fight against invasive species,” said Derek Sandison, director of the Washington State Department of Agriculture. “Not only did a member of the public report the first-ever Asian giant hornet, but alert residents have been responsible for more than one-third of new invasive species detections in the state since 1990.

Asian Giant Hornet close-up
Photo of Asian giant hornet, courtesy of Karla Salp, Washington State Department of Agriculture, Bugwood.org

Stay tuned for future invasive species awareness events this spring, including Alaska Invasive Species Awareness Week in June. Follow us on Facebook to track events and opportunities to help with invasive species projects in your local community. In the meantime, as the sunlight returns to Alaska, learn about the things you can do here on the Kenai Peninsula to stop the spread and introduction of harmful invasive species. Thank you for doing your part to keep Alaska wild and free!

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