Warning over the danger of invasive species

Scots are being urged to be aware of invasive non-native species harm the environment and wildlife.

These plants can be costly to the economy and can even pose a risk to our health and way of life.

During Invasive Species Week, which runs from May 13-17, organisations across the country are working together to raise awareness and to ask everyone to help prevent their spread, to protect the environment and recreational spaces for future generations to enjoy.

Invasive Species Week coincides with the time of year when invasive plants begin to emerge and become more visible.

In Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, a project is working with community groups to help them record, survey and control invasive plants.

The North East Non-Native Invasive Species (NENNIS) project was established last year to help coordinate control of problem species, focusing particularly on giant hogweed, Japanese knotweed, Himalayan balsam and American Skunk cabbage.

The project is funded through the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development together with Aberdeenshire Council and Aberdeen City Council.

Project officer Estee Farrar said: ‘Many people in local communities want to do something about the problems of invasive species but can be put off because they don’t know what to do.

‘Our project aims to work with established community groups and enables them to take actions for themselves, whether that is just making sure that the problem plants are recorded, or they might want to get involved and actually carry out the control work. We can provide the training and equipment to
help that happen.’

The project officer post is hosted by the River Dee Trust can be contacted at invasivecoordinator@riverdee.org

Further information on NENNIS is available HERE.

For ways in which you can help, see: http://www.nonnativespecies.org/index.cfm?sectionid=132