Residents urged to assist with invasive weed detection
Invasive weeds raise seasonal fire danger and threaten lake water quality, according to the Lake Tahoe Basin Weed Coordinating Group.
By identifying new infestations early and controlling them quickly, landowners can protect their properties and the lake and avoid the control costs associated with larger infestations.
The group has introduced a new online tool to make identification and reporting weeds easier.
The website, http://www.tahoeinvasiveweeds.org, provides maps of known invasive weed sites and allows landowners, concerned citizens and land managers to report sightings of new infestations. Users will also find weed identification tools and photos to help recognize the area’s priority invasive plants. All reports are verified by a team member. Group members then determine the best way to control the weeds before they become established.
Left unchecked, invasive weeds can damage forests, roads, trails, parks, neighborhoods and natural areas. Once established, weed infestations are difficult and expensive to control and can reduce land values, damage water quality and clarity, contribute to soil erosion, displace native plants and degrade wildlife habitat.
Area residents can help stop the spread of invasive weeds by making sure they are not moving seeds or plant parts that can start new weeds in uninfested areas. Hikers, bikers and fisherman should remove all plant parts and seeds from their boots, clothing and equipment before leaving an area to prevent weed spread. Vehicle undercarriages and tires should be checked before moving from a weed-infested area and seeds and plant parts should be removed, bagged and placed in a garbage receptacle.
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