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Invasive Species Resources

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DHS. Customs and Border Protection.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agriculture specialists have already intercepted a dozen significant and potentially destructive pests this year at various ports of entry in Florida as part of the agency's all-encompassing efforts to safeguard American agriculture.

Unknown pests pose a significant risk in agriculture due to a lack of knowledge in controlling the pests and the extent of damage they can cause to crops. U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) entomologists recently classified eight pests discovered by CBP agriculture specialists in Florida as first-in-the-nation interceptions and another pest as a new species.

U.S. Government Printing Office. Federal Depository Library Program Electronic Collection Archive.
Compiled and Edited by: Gregory Ruiz and David Reid, NOAA Technical Memorandum GLERL-142.
See also: GLERL Technical Reports for more reports
USDA. FS. Rocky Mountain Research Station.
Rocky Mountain Research Station personnel have scientific expertise in widely ranging disciplines and conduct multidisciplinary research on invasive species issues with emphasis in terrestrial and aquatic habitats throughout the Interior West, Great Plains, and related areas.
USDA. FS. Southern Research Station. CompassLive.

White-nose syndrome (WNS) has killed more than six million bats over the past decade. WNS is caused by the fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans (Pd). Studies show that bats eat enough insect pests to save the U.S. corn industry more than $1 billion a year in crop damage and pesticide costs, and more than $3 billion per year to all agricultural production including forests.
 

To help fund the research needed to combat this deadly disease, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced $2.5 million in grants for research of high priority questions about WNS that will improve our ability to manage the disease and conserve affected bats.

USDA. FS. Southern Research Station. CompassLive.

Laurel wilt has devastated plants in the Lauraceae family – redbay, sassafras, pondberry, avocado, and others – since it was first detected in the southeastern U.S. around 2002. There is no widespread, effective treatment for laurel wilt. Genetics research is focused on learning more about the pathogen's genetic structure in order to improve detection methods and screening for possible resistance in Lauraceae host species. "We have developed genetic markers to describe the population of the pathogen in the U.S.," says USDA Forest Service plant pathologist Tyler Dreaden. "Knowing which genotypes to use contributes to a quicker, more cost-effective resistance screening process." Dreaden led a new study to shed light on the genetic structure of the pathogen and its reproductive strategy. The research team included Marc Hughes at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Randy Ploetz and Jason Smith at the University of Florida, and Adam Black, horticulture director of the Peckerwood Garden Conservation Foundation in Texas. Their findings were published in Forests.

DOD. USACE. Buffalo District.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Buffalo District is on a mission to fight hydrilla, an aggressive plant species that has wreaked havoc from Asia to every continent except Antarctica. "Hydrilla completely chokes out our waterways and impacts all the things we enjoy,” said Michael Greer, USACE Buffalo District project manager." It affects water quality, the economy, businesses, hydropower and flood reduction - ultimately our health and our wallets." Buffalo District’s main projects to eradicate hydrilla are at the Erie Canal and Tonawanda Creek, Tonawanda, NY, as well as on Cayuga Lake near Aurora, NY and Ithaca, NY. The District provides assistance on Pymatuning Lake which borders Pennsylvania and Ohio, and at Raystown Lake in south central Pennsylvania. Buffalo District is also lending expertise to a project on the Connecticut River. Funding for the project is available through the Corps of Engineers Aquatic Plant Control Research Program and Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

USDA. Blog.

Early in October 2016, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) was faced once again with New World screwworm, which had been eradicated from the United States more than three decades ago. Infestation of this flesh-eating parasite was confirmed in deer from the National Key Deer Refuge in the Florida Keys.

 

USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) immediately began releasing sterile male flies in Florida’s affected areas as part of an aggressive eradication campaign. By March 2017, the screwworm had been successfully eradicated from Florida.