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From the Fall 2009 Conservationist for Kids

image of the water chestnut not wanted card

Become an Invasive Species Detective

By Gina Jack

An outdoor detective does many things. They observe the world around them. They investigate things they're curious about and record their observations. Become an invasive species detective and go a step further. Share your findings with others and work to combat invasive species. Here are some ideas to get you started. What else can you do?

  • Watch for invasive species in your neighborhood. Learn what to be on the lookout for, including native look-alikes. If you find something suspicious, report it to DEC's Office of Invasive Species Coordination.
  • Become a Weed Warrior and help organized groups in your area to remove invasive plants.
  • Don't spread invasive animals and plants. Don't move firewood. Clean and dry your equipment (boats, fishing gear, boots, etc.) if you've been in or near water.
  • Use native plants in the garden instead of non-native species.
  • Make a "Not Wanted" poster to teach others about invasive species.
Not Wanted Poster


Make a "not wanted" poster about an invasive species in your area. Include a picture or drawing of the invasive. Describe what the plant or animal looks like, where it came from, and how to prevent it from spreading further. Use your poster to let your friends and neighbors know how they can help stop the spread of invasive species.