Ontario jumping worm invasion threatens to leap borders

For the first time, Asian jumping worms were found in Ontario in March. The discovery of the invasive worms follows sightings in all Great Lakes states except for Michigan, Pennsylvania and New York. Removal of invasive species once they are established is extremely difficult, making prevention essential.

May: Good fish, fun fish, bad fish, sunfish

May is a good time to look for sunfish nests. The sunfish family includes some of Michigan’s most popular sport fish: largemouth and smallmouth bass, bluegills, pumpkinseeds, crappies, rock bass and others. They are also among the world’s worst invasive fish species.

Emerald ash borer turns forest into wetlands

The invasive emerald ash borer has the potential to destroy over 3 million acres of black ash wetlands across the region, according to a recent study published in the journal Ecological Applications. 

The pandemic that closed the U.S./Canadian border to people may have opened it to the invasive sea lamprey

Great Lakes invasive species cling to shipments and navigate canals to migrate, but one aquatic invader – sea lamprey – benefitted from border closures instead. During 2020, 93 Great Lakes tributaries and 11 standing bodies of water were scheduled for chemical treatments for lamprey, but only 26 tributaries and six standing bodies of water were completed.

Invasive species now called spongy moth

The bothersome gypsy moth will now be known as the spongy moth. The Entomological Society of America made the change because the word “gypsy” is considered a derogatory slur against the Romani people. The word was dropped from its list of common names last July and the new name was just announced.

Hope spreads for infected trees

Researchers in Ohio are getting ready to expand one of seven treatments for a widespread disease that kills beech trees. The invasive beech leaf disease causes dark striping on leaves and makes them thick, leathery and disfigured before killing the tree.

More money allocated for Great Lakes research

Michigan Sea Grant recently announced four new research projects with one common goal — protecting the Great Lakes. It committed almost $1 million to the projects, including $225,000 from the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy. In addition, university research partners contributed over $500,000 in matching funds. Their major topics are water use, walleye, invasive mussel larvae and harmful algae blooms.

Grant program repels Great Lakes invaders

Grants are available to buy removal supplies, like sponges and towels, or host events teaching boaters how to properly clean off invasive species, according to a Department of Natural Resources press release.