National Invasive Species Awareness Week kicks off February 25 and runs through March 3.
So what is an Invasive Species?
Invasive species are non-native organisms that, often because they’re free from natural controls they had in their native lands, cause ecological, economic or human harm in the new lands they’ve been introduced into. They often have several traits in common besides freedom from their original natural controls. They often reproduce very quickly and out compete native fauna and flora. Though some, such as many exotic invasive plants introduced for the horticultural trade, may look harmless, they can cause great harm. The National Wildlife Federation estimates that 42% of threatened and endangered species are at risk due to invasives.
Arlington’s Invasive Plant program
Arlington County, like all our region’s jurisdictions, recognizes these threats. In fact, page 21 of the Arlington County Board approved Natural Resources Management Plan has this statement: “Invasive plant species represent the greatest and most immediate threat to the continued survival of Arlington’s natural lands and native plant communities.” Arlington, like so many neighboring jurisdictions, has committed many resources and efforts to manage invasives.