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University of Minnesota Extension

Tracking invasive species

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You can get involved in the fight against invasive species in Minnesota.

Volunteer opportunities

Aquatic Invasive Species Detectors

Aquatic invasive species (AIS) detectors and trackers include professional AIS managers and citizen scientist volunteers. Detectors learn skills to recognize and report early infestations. Trackers monitor population and water chemistry changes in coordination with AIS management and research projects.

Extension partners with the Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center to organize these programs statewide.

Forest Pest First Detectors

Forest pest first detectors are trained to quickly detect and diagnose early infestations of emerald ash borer, gypsy moth, Asian longhorned beetle, Japanese barberry, Oriental bittersweet and other pests, so that state and federal agencies can control the spread.

This program is a joint venture between Extension, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture and Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Wasp Watchers

Citizen scientists help in the early detection of emerald ash borer (EAB) with the help of a native, harmless, beetle-hunting wasp called the smoky winged beetle bandit. Volunteers monitor the nesting sites of these wasps to see if they are capturing EAB.

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