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Invasive species in 2016

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Echinacea purpurea at Yellow Orchid Hill

Non-native and invasive species are present in many of our study sites and may compete with native species for resources, such as light, space, or pollinators. Some invasive species, such as brome (Bromus inermis) and sweet clover (Melitotus officinalis), are already so widespread and abundant that we don’t keep track of where they are. However, this summer we noticed new appearances of several other non-native species, Echinacea purpurea and Rudbeckia hirta*, that could become more dominant in years to come. We documented their presence by taking photos and shooting GPS points. Most of the places where we saw these species were nearby or part of a restoration where the non-native species was introduced as part of the seed mix. Going forward, we will return to the locations where these species were found in 2016 and monitor the expansion of their populations.

Year: 2016

Location: RRX (Rudbeckia hirta), north of WAA (Rudbeckia hirta), RLR (Rudbeckia hirta and Echinacea purpurea), YOHW (Echinacea purpurea), and the corner of Tower Rd and 27 (Rudbeckia hirta)

Data collected: The photos we took are stored in Dropbox (summer2016pics/invasives)

GPS points shot: We shot GPS points at: RRX (1 pt), RLR (approximately 10 pts), YOH (1 pt). The restoration near WAA had too many plants to shoot individually, so we just took pictures. We couldn’t find the Rudbeckia at the corner of Tower Rd because the area where it had been was disturbed by electrical work. These points are stored in the job ‘ECHPURP_RUDBHIRT_20160914_SULU.tsj’.

*You might be thinking, “Isn’t Rudbeckia native?” and the answer is yes, in other parts of Minnesota. However it is not present in any of the high-quality remnant prairies in our study area and so we consider it to be non-native to our sites.

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