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Volume 22
Number 2
Fall 2004
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[Thumbnail of flow chart]. Prioritizing weed management sites begins by categorizing alien plants known to exist within the geographical area of an I & M network. Assessing the invasive species issue

By Pamela Benjamin and Ron Hiebert
Published: 15 Jan 2014 (online)  •  30 Jan 2014 (in print)
Pages
 
Abstract
  Introduction
Importance of establishing a baseline
Guidelines for inventory, mapping, and monitoring
Identifying priority species and priority areas for treatment
Assessing the restoration potential of weed-infested sites
Future steps
Conclusion
References
About the authors
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Introduction

As a major focus of the Natural Resource Challenge, management of alien species has begun to receive an increasing amount of support throughout the National Park Service (NPS). In particular, the establishment of Exotic Plant Management Teams (EPMTs) is a major contribution to increasing our ability to control invasive weeds. However, an array of assessment tools is needed in order to ensure that these teams, as well as monitoring network and park staffs, target the control of invasive plants of highest priority, in areas of greatest value, and with the highest potential for restoration.

Several approaches have begun to provide consistency in the inventory and mapping of weeds (Beard et al. 2001, Benjamin 2001), to establish guidelines for long-term monitoring (Hiebert 2002), and to assist in the assessment of the restoration potential of weed-infested sites (Benjamin 2004). Yet, despite these substantial advances, limitations remain that significantly jeopardize our attempt to win the battle against invasive plants.

This article focuses on the role of weed assessments in developing effective weed management strategies at multiple levels throughout the National Park Service. It also summarizes the benefits of emerging guidelines for the inventory, mapping, and monitoring of invasive weed species, and for assessing the restoration potential of weed-infested areas. Furthermore, it provides specific recommendations on future steps needed to ensure that the National Park Service continues to serve its role in preserving the natural and cultural heritage of this nation.

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This page updated:  26 October 2006
URL: http://www.nature.nps.gov/ParkScience/index.cfm?ArticleID=117&Page=1



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