Change Is In the Air
PlayCleanGo is proud to announce that this winter, the North American Invasive Species Management Association (NAISMA) and the Canadian Council on Invasive Species (CCIS) will be launching parallel campaigns, in the United States and Canada respectively, to expand PlayCleanGo across the continent. Both organizations are committed to furthering the great work and positive messaging started by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and will be taking the campaign to new heights with the passion and commitment of their respective members.
In order for these two campaigns to support partner organizations like yours with services like high quality graphic designs, outreach materials, resources, and networking with other PlayCleanGo partners, both organizations need a strong foundation which combines partner and sponsor contributions, and outside grants. In working with the PlayCleanGo Advisory Council, both organizations have agreed to keep access to the PlayCleanGo graphic library free to all PlayCleanGo partners. However, other partner benefits will be made available on an annual fee-for-service basis. The available benefits have been organized into tiered structures which allow each partner organization to select the tier best suited to their needs. We ask all existing partners to select the tier that works best for them and renew their partnership for the up-coming year.
For Partners in the United States and Mexico
A letter will be sent out in November, 2018 with an explanation of the tiered benefits and instructions on how to sign-up. We ask that you renew your partnership by January 1, 2019 following the letter's instructions. The instructions will include how to set up your own password-protected account in order to access PlayCleanGo graphic material. In the meantime, the graphic library, currently housed on Dropbox, will be moved to the PlayCleanGo website so all partners can access our materials. This will remedy the problem many federal employees faced in the past because of internal concerns about Dropbox security. Your new user name and password will then gain you access to the library's search engine to view and/or download PlayCleanGo graphic files.
Also in November, NAISMA will be taking over all partner services. This includes orders for PlayCleanGo materials, requests for graphic support and new partner sign-ups. As before, contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or requests.
For Partners in Canada
CCIS is putting the final touches on their tiered structure of benefits. Once they have those complete and set up on their website, they will be sending a letter to all Canadian partners. Because their tiers are not yet final, we don't have the final ETA for their letter or their renewal date. So stay tuned and they will be in touch with you. When the Canadian website is formally launched, we will put an announcement with the link on the U.S. website.
PlayCleanGo will bulk upload the email addresses for all current enewsletter subscribers. So you do not need to renew your subscription. The winter issue of the PlayCleanGo Partners’ enewsletter will be moving from GovDelivery to MailChimp. While you might not even notice the change, the new platform gives us more flexibility in how we share important information. If your friends and coworkers are not receiving our current enewsletter, have them go to the Join page and click the Partner Newsletter Sign-up button at the bottom of the page to become a subscriber.
News from PlayCleanGo Partners
Never Too Young
The Central Kootenay Invasive Species Society (CKISS) is an active PlayCleanGo partner who strives to keep British Columbia's lakes pristine, forests lush, mountains healthy and economies thriving through hands on education programs. An example of this is when CKISS worked closely with students from the Rossland Summit School. These adorable kindergarten students engaged community members by setting up at a local trail head and offered to brush people’s shoes and bicycle tires as they came and left the trails. It was great to see the students take an active role in talking to community members about what they were doing and why. The brushing station offered students hands-on experiences that provided opportunities for them to see the importance of minimizing the spread of invasive plants. For more information and to see photos of kids in action.
Sea to Sky Invasive Species Council
By: Claude-Anne (Clo) Godbout-Gauthier, Whistler, BC Canada
The Sea to Sky Invasive Species Council (SSISC), recently partnered with BC Parks and the Community Foundation of Whistler to have educational boot brush stations installed at select trailheads throughout the region.
The signs are designed to educate visitors about the dangers that invasive species pose to the Sea to Sky landscape. Clare Greenberg, SSISC’s Executive Director pointed out that, "the purpose of the signs is to remind people that invasive plant seeds can hitch a ride on boots, bikes and gear."
The three trailhead locations where these signs have been installed include: Elfin Lakes, Garibaldi Lake and Brandywine Falls; which have all seen significant increases in numbers of visitors and trail users in recent years.
The boot brush stations aim to encourage visitors to clean their footwear before they enter the trail to minimize the risk of invasive plants spreading along the trail. The trails at these parks often lead to alpine wildflower meadows. These sensitive ecosystems are extremely vulnerable to invasive species such as orange hawkweed. "Invasive plants, like orange hawkweed, are prolific seeders, and are very successful at spreading along hiking and biking trails," explained Greenberg. "We hope that these signs will increase awareness, reduce the amount of invasive plant seeds making their way up the trails, and in turn help to protect the sensitive ecosystems in these parks."
Combating Invasive American Bullfrogs Using Citizen Science
By Laurie Frankom, Central Kootenay Invasive Species Society (CKISS)
One concern is that American bullfrogs are asymptomatic carriers of the deadly chytrid fungus. They can spread this fungus, which has been described as “the worst infectious disease ever recorded among vertebrates in terms of the number of species impacted, and its propensity to drive them to extinction” (Gascon et al, 2007).
The Central Kootenay Invasive Species Society (CKISS), has been working to prevent the invasive frogs from heading north into Creston. An early detection and rapid response (EDRR) surveillance program has been implemented, and the area has been under regular monitoring since the summer of 2015. Thanks to funding from Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) PromoScience Program, CKISS developed a ‘Citizen Science: Frog Watching Program’ that was delivered to grade five and six students at the Yaqan Nukiy School on June 4, 2018.
The objective of the program is to provide teachers and students with a hands-on and interactive experience that will give them the knowledge, tools and resources they need in order to make vital contributions to invasive species early detection, monitoring and management by becoming citizen scientists. Students received training on how to identify both native and invasive frogs using a dichotomous key and by listening to their different calls. They were advised on how to report invasive bullfrog sighting and what steps to take in order to upload frog observations to the provincial wildlife database that biologists use to manage wildlife in BC. After their training was complete, the students along with CKISS staff took a field trip to the Creston Valley Wildlife Centre Management Area (CVWMA) to put their training to the test. During the field trip, the students received an additional hands-on learning experience by conducting an inventory of the invasive plant species that they observed at the wetland using field guides and Invasive Alien Plant Program forms. Students stepped into the role of ‘invasive species technician’ by recording the density and distribution of the high priority invasive riparian plant yellow flag iris that has sadly found its way into the CVWMA.
Yellow flag iris must be controlled immediately because it is capable of invading new areas quickly as it can spread by seeds and rhizome fragments. Once established it outcompetes native plant species and ultimately disrupts an area’s ecosystem complexity. These disturbances result in reduced habitat suitability and support for wildlife – especially for breeding, staging, and migrating waterfowl. In addition, the plant can sicken livestock if ingested and can cause skin irritation in humans.
You can be a citizen scientist too by visiting www.ckiss.ca for information on how to identify bullfrogs, yellow flag iris and other invasive species.
Bullfrog sightings can be reported to:
** when reporting sightings, please note where and when you spotted/heard it and take a photo if possible.
As shout out to our finders!
This program would not be possible without the support of the Columbia Basin Trust and Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) PromoScience Program
"Hi, I'm Tucker the Turtle". I'm starting my most ambitious project to date! I'm partnering with the campaign PlayCleanGo: Stop Invasive Species In Your Tracks® to educate outdoor recreationists about non-native invasive species and what they can do to stop them. Together, we will reach lots more people AND expand our resources. I'll be learning about new species and I'll update my book, coloring book, and field guide to include 9 more species. It's going to be epic!
Will you help me out? I want to spend the next few months traveling the country and seeing new places. I can spread awareness and have fun too. Just click on my picture, print and cut it out, and take me some place amazing. Then, take my picture with your friends and family! You can send me a quick note about where "we" went together along with the photo at:Tuckertheturtle1@gmail.com. I'll post some of my favorite pictures on my website. Thanks for helping a turtle out! I can't get too far on my own. And, don't forget to visit PlayCleanGo at www.playcleango.org.
The Pests that Girdle the Home of Tucker the Turtle, a wonderful children's reading book has been updated and co-branded by PlayCleanGo. With all original artwork, the book is a beautiful way to introduce children to the impacts of invasive species. You can purchase the book for $12.50, (proceeds go to the Potomac Highlands CWPMA) by going to Amazon.
Also available is Tucker the Turtles Field Guide. PlayCleanGo partners can download the graphic files to print themselves from the PlayCleanGo graphic library, where it can be found in the folder "Children's Matls". Or you can order preprinted field guides using the PlayCleanGo Order Form.
Western province interests – Andrea Altherr
Andrea Altherr moved to the Yukon in 2000 and got involved in the Yukon Invasive Species Council (YISC) in 2008. Since then she has worked as the coordinator for the council and manages all its projects. YISC recognizes the importance of being connected with other jurisdictions and participates actively in the Canadian Council on Invasive Species and the Canadian working group to set up PlayCleanGo in Canada. Andrea has a background as a teacher and outdoor guide. Her love for the pristine Yukon is contagious and motivates her to take on the invasive species challenge!
2018 National Trails Conference
Join us for the 16th National Trails System Conference (formerly National Scenic and Historic Trails Biennial Conference) in Vancouver, WA from October 22nd through October 25th, 2018.
The Partnership for the National Trails System (PNTS) and River Management Society (RMS) will host co-located events in Vancouver, WA to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the National Trails and Wild & Scenic Rivers Systems Acts. These side-by-side events will bring together private and public organizations and Federal agencies dedicated to the preservation of the nation's wild, scenic, and historic places.
Trail conference and river symposium themes and tracks will differ, however, there will be several joint sessions offered. For those interested in attending both events, dual registration will be available at an additional cost.
Learn more about how you can take part in the 50th Commemoration of the National Trails System Act.
Free OHV Summit
The Nevada Off-Highway Vehicles Program is hosting its first annual OHV Summit in Ely on November 1-3, 2018. The Summit is free to anyone who is interested in attending. The Summit will start at 1:00 p.m. on Thursday and run until 6:00 p.m.. It will resume at 8:00 a.m. on Friday and conclude at noon. A group ride is scheduled for Saturday, November 3.
Topics covered during the meeting portion of the Summit are:
- Trails in Your Area
- Upcoming OHV Projects
- Rider Safety
- Avoiding Hitchhikers – Noxious Weeds and the PlayCleanGo Program
There will also be educational booths on Thursday and Friday at the Convention Center. Eastern Nevada Landscape Coalition will have a booth displaying PlayCleanGo materials and staff will talk about how not to transport invasive species on your equipment.
For more information on the Summit or to register use this link: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/northern-nevada-off-highway-vehicle-summit-tickets-49904173727 or go to ohv.nv.gov.
Sponsors for the event are: Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Ely All Aboard, and Off Road Nevada.