Prevent the Spread of Terrestrial Invasive Species
Invasive plants can be spread by seeds
stuck to clothing.
People unknowingly spread invasive pests during everyday outdoor activities. You can help prevent the spread of terrestrial invasive species by following the quick and easy tips below.
Learn and Gear Up
- Often overlooked, your first step should be to learn about the invasive species in your area. The web is full of useful resources, but you can start with the DEC Invasive Species webpage and The New York State Invasive Species Clearinghouse (leaves the DEC website) to begin your search.
- Wear outer clothing that is not "seed-friendly." Wool, fleece, Velcro® and other fabrics that seeds easily cling to should be covered by jackets, pants and gaiters* made of smoother materials, like nylon. *Gaiters are garments worn over shoes and the lower part of the leg to protect from water and mud.
- Avoid wearing footwear with deep tread, which collects plants, mud and other debris. When conditions/terrain call for deep tread, clean footwear thoroughly.
- Carry a brush, small scissors, and other tools for cleaning clothing/gear.
- For specific tips relating to bicycling, hunting, camping, and other activities, see pages 71-100 of the USDA Forest Service's Non-Native Invasive Species Best Management Practices (PDF, 3.8 MB).
- For specific tips relating to gardening, see Plantwise by the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas (leaves DEC website).
Before and After Outdoor Activities
- Look for and remove
e seeds, plant pieces, and insects on:
Cleaning boot treads can prevent the spread
of invasive species.
- Hair and clothing,
- Gear and equipment,
- Vehicles and trailers,
- Dogs, horses and other animals.
- Hair and clothing,
- Clean off dirt/mud which could harbor unseen pests.
- Dispose of debris at designated cleaning stations or waste-disposal areas. If these areas are unavailable, clean in parking lots or driveways where invasive pests are unlikely to spread.
- Avoid cleaning near waterways; invasive species may spread to new areas downstream.
Follow State Regulations
- Invasive insects and diseases spread through the movement of firewood. Before bringing wood with you when camping or vacationing, check NYS's firewood regulation.
- Before buying and relocating plants or animals, check the NYS Regulated and Prohibited Invasive Species list.
- Hunting and possession of Eurasian boar is regulated in NYS. Check NYS's Eurasian boar regulation for more information.
Spread the Word
- Share what you learn about invasive species with your friends, family and coworkers.
- NYS is divided
into eight Partnerships for Regional Invasive Species Management (PRISMs) which conduct management activities and provide volunteer opportunities on a regional basis.
Invasive species can be transported by
cars, bikes, and other vehicles.
- To submit specimens or pictures for identification, contact the Forest Health Diagnostic Lab.
- Try native plants. The following are examples of native plants that work well in home gardens and landscaping. Additional information about gardening with native plants can be found at bookstores, online and at your local library.
For questions or to report an invasive species sighting, call the Forest Health Information Line toll-free 1-866-640-0652.
- Stop the Spread brochure (PDF, 3.1 MB) - Printable 8.5 x 11" PDF on above tips
- Terrestrial invasive species - More information on terrestrial invasive species
- Aquatic invasive species - Information on aquatic invasive species
Rakes and other yard tools can transport invasive
species from one property to another.