Puncturevine seeds are found on a dirt bike.

How you can help prevent invasive plant spread in the Kootenay

When it comes to the prevention of the spread of invasive species, there are many things we can do to help while enjoying the outdoors.

Close your eyes and picture this: it’s the first hot day of the year, the sun is shining, birds are chirping, and everything around is lush, green, and pristine. The lakes and rivers seem to sparkle and dance under the sun’s warm rays. You’re heading out to spend this Kootenay summer day with friends kayaking and mountain biking, taking advantage of all this incredible region has to offer. While we are extremely fortunate to live in an area with such incredible outdoor facilities, it is important to remember the impact we have on the environment around us, especially when it comes to the spread of invasive species.

Whether you’re into hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, or an array of other outdoor activities, the Kootenay region is the place for you. However what should we be keeping in mind in terms of our impact on the environment around us? When it comes to the prevention of the spread of invasive species, there are many things we can do to help while enjoying the outdoors.

Play-Clean-Go, an initiative dedicated to help curb the spread of invasives, states, “Invasive species have many pathways of spread. For instance, weed seeds move easily in soil so, muddy boots or vehicles can move weed seeds. Some weeds seeds have special hooks to help them hitch a ride. Thus, weeds seeds can spread on our shoes, socks, clothing, and pets.”

However, the transportation of pesky weeds through soil is just one aspect of our trouble with invasive species. The Central Kootenay Invasive Plant Committee has discovered many cases where water-born invasives have “hitched rides” on vessels such as; boats, kayaks, and other water equipment that have then been reintroduced into our lakes and rivers, thus causing damage. By learning how to inspect and clean our equipment and belongings, we can begin to reduce the chance of inadvertently spreading something that could harm the pristine outdoor environment we so cherish. Here are a few tips to keep in mind this summer;

• During campfire season use only local or certified firewood, if you are travelling make sure all the wood you bring is used before returning home

• While hiking, walking, or biking make sure to stay on designated trails designed for this purpose

• Leave clean! Before returning home make sure to check your belongings and remove any dirt, plants, or bugs to prevent an invasive species from tagging along.

Although summer is an amazing time of year in our Kootenay region, it is important to remember the impacts our outdoor activities have on the spread of invasive species. This is an issue that affects everyone, and in order to maintain our incredible surroundings it is up to us to become informed, attentive, and accountable in preventing the spread of invasive species.

You can help stop the spread of invasive plants. For more information please go to ckipc.ca or playcleango.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just Posted

Slocan Valley added to communities on flooding evac alert

Kootenay Lake is expected to reach flooding level in Nelson by Friday

UPDATED: Hwy 3 west of Creston remains closed due to mudslide

A detour is available on the Kootenay Lake Ferry, but commuters could see wait times

COLUMN: Making a wildlife smart community

David White writes how property owners can avoid conflict with nature

Police searching for Nelson man

Brent Mickelson hasn’t been heard from since February

Local police recognized for work

Eight officers were honoured for removing impaired drivers

VIDEO: After the floods, comes the cleanup as Grand Forks rebuilds

Business owners in downtown wonder how long it will take for things to go back to normal

UPDATE: Woman dies in ocean accident near Tofino hours before daughter’s wedding

“We are so thankful to everyone who helped our mom.”

Olympian sues USA Swimming, saying it failed to protect her

Ariana Kukors Smith alleges her former coach Sean Hutchison began grooming her for sexual abuse at the age of 13

Defence minister thanks troops for B.C. flood relief work

Harjit Sajjan says not only was military response quick, support from locals has been ‘tremendous’

Couple survives being buried in mudslide on B.C. highway

The couple, from Saskatchewan, were en route to Nelson when a tree fell in their path

‘So grateful:’ Injured Bronco hockey player glad he’s alive, works on recovery

Ryan Straschnitzki was badly hurt in the accident: a spinal injury, broken ribs, a broken collar bone, and punctured lung

PHOTOS: Floodwaters rise and fall in Grand Forks

The flood-ravaged Kootenay-Boundary region begins to heal

Martin Mars waterbombers’ firefighting days are done

Wayne Coulson said his company still hopes to find a new home for the vintage aircraft

NHL playoffs weekly roundup

Vegas Golden Knights have done the impossible and have a chance at hoisting the Stanley Cup

Most Read