It’s spring in the Upper Peninsula and Memorial Day is next weekend. It’s also National Invasive Species Awareness Week. Invasive species are a continent-wide problem that starts at home. Invasive species can destroy many habitats. They can spread by boat, tires, and foot. But the spread can be prevented.

The North American Invasive Species Management Association has declared May 15-22 as National Invasive Species Awareness Week, an international event to raise awareness about the threat these species pose and what can be done to prevent their spread.

According to NAISMA, invasive species – those that are not native and can cause harm to the environment, economy or human health – cost the U.S. $120 billion annually.


Adopt eco-friendly habits

No matter what type of outdoor recreation you enjoy, you and your friends and family can take simple steps against invasive species:

  • Hikers: Keep a scrub brush in your vehicle to clean off boots and gear before and after you hit the trail.
  • Bikers and motorized trail users: Wash off mud and debris from bikes, ATVs and trailers between rides.
  • Boaters: Remove drain plugs, drain all water from tanks and wells, and remove all weeds and debris from your boat and trailer before getting on the road.
  • Campers: Choose certified, heat-treated firewood when available or buy firewood at or near your destination. Don’t take leftover firewood to a new location.

“Everyone can do something to prevent invasive species from taking over agricultural and natural environments, and we encourage organizations and individuals to take leadership teaching their community about how to solve invasive species issues locally,” said Bergner.

For more information on how to prevent the spread please visit: