Thursday, April 21, 2011

Upcoming Southern Illinois Weed Watcher Training Session and Vounteer Party

You Are Invited!!
Weeds and Wine
Volunteer Recruitment &
Invasive Plant ID Party!

Why: Invasive plant species are invading our beautiful natural areas. They are aggressively overtaking or displacing native species causing a drastic reduction in our native biodiversity and natural beauty. Discovering weeds before they become well-established is critical to reducing damage to ecosystem integrity, preventing the loss of habitat for rare plants and animals, and preventing costly natural resource management.

Everyone who has been, currently is, or wants to be
involved in the Weed Watch Project.

What: Invasive Weed ID and Wine Party.

When: Sunday, May 15 from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Where: Pomona Winery, 2865 Hickory Ridge Road, Pomona, IL 62975

What to Bring:
Drinking water for the trail and some cash to buy yourself a glass of delicious Pomona Winery apple wine or non-alcoholic soft drink. Snacks and munchies will be provided-but extra contributions won’t be turned down! We’ll kick off the party by explaining what WeedWatch is and the various ways you can get involved, then professional botanists will lead an invasive weed identification training. Following the training we’ll gather back at the winery to celebrate the accomplishments made over the past three years, to celebrate the future of the project, to get acquainted with old and new friends, and to have fun!

Please RSVP to or 618-521-1030.

The Illinois WeedWatch Project has been made possible through a grant from the
Illinois Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Preservation Fund.

Directions to Pomona Winery
The winery is easily reached from Highway 127 by following the wine trail signs and arrows. If you haven’t been to the winery before look forward to a scenic 25 to 35 minute drive through the lovely Shawnee Hills Forest once you leave Highway 127 (either the southern or the northern routes off the highway take about the same time). And, yes, from Highway 127 it is the longest 9.1 miles that you will ever drive--so relax, enjoy the scenery, and travel safe!

Changes Coming to WeedWatch
We are developing some new approaches to data collection that will accomodate a broader range of physical ability, interest level and time commitment. If you can’t come to the party, but are interested in learning more about how you can get involved in WeedWatch, please contact Terri at or 618-521-1030.

WeedWatch Accomplishments
WeedWatch Volunteers have contributed hundreds of hours in the field collecting hundreds of points and polygons. This data, all entered into a central database, has been used by agencies to treat infested areas, or in the case of the Shawnee National Forest, to help in the development of the Invasive Species Plan. This plan is due to be released soon for public comment and implementation (barring any major public resistance).

Monday, April 18, 2011

Updated Emerald Ash Borer website for Illinois

The Illinois Department of Agriculture has updated their Emerald Ash Borer website. It can be found at:

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Upcoming Invasive Species Conference in Chicago

From May 11th through May 13th, 2011, the Program on the Global Environment at the University of Chicago is hosting the conference "Invasive Species in a Globalized World".

The goal of the conference is to bring together people working on invasive species from a broad range of perspectives, including ecologists, economists, legal scholars, historians and outreach/communication specialists.

The conference begins on Wednesday the 11th at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago with a keynote address by Rick Shine (University of Sydney, Australia): Invasive Cane Toads in Australia: the ecological, evolutionary and social effects of a tropical amphibian in a strange land.

This will followed by sessions at the University of Chicago all day Thursday (12th) and Friday (13th.

More detail, including the full list of speakers, is available at: This website it being regularly updated, and will soon have the full schedule.

All sessions of the conference, including the keynote, are free and open to the public.

Please contact Reuben Keller ( if you have any questions.