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.
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This page updated:
26 October 2006
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.
Suggested citation for this article:
Benjamin, P., and R. Hiebert. 2004. Assessing the invasive plant issue. Park Science 22(2):27–31.
Available at http://www.nature.nps.gov/ParkScience/archive/PDF/Article_PDFs/ParkScience22(2)Fall2004_27-31_BenjaminHiebert_2433.pdf.
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