Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council

REGION 8, USDA-FS STATE AND PRIVATE FORESTRY, FOREST HEALTH PROTECTION NON NATIVE INVASIVE PLANT PROGRAM. John W. Taylor, Jr., Southern Region, USDA-FS State and Private Forestry, Forest Health Protection, Atlanta, GA 30309 (


Invasive species threaten the sustainability of our forest ecosystems, regionally, nationally, and globally. Forests within the thirteen states of the Southern Region are rich in biological diversity and provide vital goods and services. The current infestations and growing threat of non-native invasive species, especially on non federal lands, can displace diversity and habitats, disrupt vital ecosystem functions, and degrade productivity and recreational benefits. Beginning in FY 2003, Forest Health has been actively involved in supporting selected activities in the non native plant arena, especially on non-federal lands, including early detection/rapid response, survey, monitoring, and operational control. Nine of the thirteen sates in the Region have established at least one project.

Cooperators include State Forestry Agencies, State Departments of Agriculture, non profit organizations, land grant colleges, and county governments. Most significant non native invasive plants of concern to forest managers in the Southern US are included in a least one project. Projects have resulted in over 2,000 acres being treated for non native invasive plant control, over 850,000 acres being surveyed for non native invasive plants, restoration of native vegetation on over 300 acres, and training of over 2,300 land managers or personnel interested in identifying and controlling non native invasive plants. Forest Health Protection funds have leveraged an additional 1.3 million dollars for use in non native invasive plant management.

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