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Follow These Actions to Protect Your Favorite Outdoor Spaces

posted by Slelo Prism at 2024-02-28 18:37:00

 Winter is here and there are many fun activities that you can enjoy this season like snowshoeing, cross country skiing, ice fishing and much more! While you’re spending time outdoors this winter there are some simple actions you can take to protect your favorite hiking trails, forests, and waterways.


The Issue: Hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA) is an invasive forest pest that kills hemlock trees. Hemlocks are an important tree species that provide many ecoservices for both nature and people.  HWA is known to be present in NYS. In the St. Lawrence Eastern Lake Ontario region, HWA is confirmed present in Oswego County and is thought to be spreading along theEastern Lake Ontario shoreline.
How You Can Help: Participate in a Virtual Hike Challenge to learn how to survey for HWA, to find suggested survey trails, and to win prizes (sign up HERE ) !


Join guided hikes to get hands-on training to learn to survey for HWA. Walk & Talk Schedule (REGISTER)
  • 12/13/23 Salmon River Falls, Orwell
  • 1/10/24 Trenton Greenbelt, Holland Patent
  • 2/14/24 Forest Park, Camden
  • 3/13/24 Great Bear Rec. Area, Fulton
The Issue: Invasive fish outcompete native fish and disrupt the aquatic food web. Impacts of invasive fish can reduce fish populations which can have negative effects on the fishing industry. 
Invasive fish can be intentionally introduced as sport fish or food sources or dumped into waterways as unwanted aquarium pests. They can also be unintentionally spread by the bilge water of boats or by people who unknowingly use an invasive juvenile fish as bait. 

How You Can Help: 
  • Learn to recognize and report invasive fish and keep an eye out for them while fishing.
  • Report sightings of invasive fish you encounter to iMapInvasives.org
  • Dispose of unwanted aquarium animals and plants in the garbage, not in waterbodies. 
  • Use local bait and dispose of unused bait in the trash or above the waterline on dry land. 
  • Clean, drain and dry your boat and equipment. 
Northern snakehead (Channa argus), and tench (Tinca tinca), are two invasive fish that are not yet known to be established in the St. Lawrence Eastern Lake Ontario region but could easily be spread to the area. u can help by keeping an eye out for these species and reporting sightings.

If you believe you have caught a northern snakehead:

If you believe you have caught a tench:
  • Note your location.
  • Do not release the specimen, put it on ice.
  • Take close-up photos of the specimen.
  • Notify the SLELO PRISM Program Manager Rob Williams at  rwilliams@tnc.org
  • Learn more about tench on the SLELO PRISM website   
Did you enjoy this blog post?

Take the Pledge to Protect and get monthly email blogs showcasing actions you can take to protect your favorite hiking trails, paddleways, forests, garden, and community from the impacts of invasive species! The Pledge to Protect was developed by the St. Lawrence Eastern Lake Ontario Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management (SLELO PRISM) as a resource intended to inform and inspire you to protect your lands and waters from the impacts of invasive species.
About Invasive Species

Invasive species are non-native species that cause harm to the environment, economy, or human health. Invasive species are easily spread by people and can have huge consequences when introduced to natural ecosystems.


The St. Lawrence–Eastern Lake Ontario Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management (SLELO PRISM) is one of eight PRISMs that span the state of New York. The PRISM network stemmed from recommendations from the NYS Invasive Species Task Force in 2005 and became fully established in 2014. PRISMs are funded by the NYS Environmental Protection fund in coordination with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation and various partners. PRISMs have made tremendous progress towards preventing the introduction and spread of invasive species and mitigating the impacts of existing invasive species within the state.

SLELO PRISM is hosted by The Nature Conservancy and was formally recognized by NYS in 2011. Their mission is to protect native habitats, biodiversity, natural areas, and freshwater resources, utilizing a collaborative and integrated approach to invasive species management with an emphasis on prevention, early detection, rapid response, education, and outreach.
posted at: 2024-02-28 18:37:00, last updated: 2024-04-09 17:40:06

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