Two organizations in the region have received national awards for their work to control and prevent the spread of invasive species.
The National Invasive Species Council, the Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force, and the Federal Interagency Committee for the Management of Noxious and Exotic Weeds presents annual awards in leadership, volunteerism, and outreach and education. This year, two groups in the Adirondacks received awards.
The Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program received the 2013 award for outstanding achievement in invasive species leadership. Director Hilary Smith explains that the program, founded in 1998, was the first of its kind in New York and has become a mentor for similar programs across the state.
The Lake George Association collaborates on numerous initiatives to prevent the introduction of invasives into that lake, including partnering with the lake’s Asian Clam Rapid Response Task Force, and sponsoring the Lake Steward Program to teach boaters about invasive species. The association was recognized for outstanding achievement in invasive species outreach and education. Executive Director Walt Lender calls the award an honor for the entire region.
The Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program is based at the offices of the Adirondack Nature Conservancy. Executive Director Mike Carr says the Adirondacks aren’t the only region benefitting from the program’s work.
Lake Champlain Basin Program Aquatic Invasive Species Management Coordinator Meg Modley says the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program is important to many of the regional watershed, river and lake associations.
The awards were announced during National Invasive Species Awareness Week, which was observed March 3 through March 8.