State Gets A- for Invasive Species Fight

SALEM, Ore. — Oregon’s battle against invasive species in 2012 received an overall grade of A-. The Oregon Invasive Species Council gave the annual report card, assessing the state’s battle against invasive species.

Oregon was assessed on its work to keep the top 100 invasive species out of the state, maintaining an invasive species reporting system, outreach and education, the statewide action plan and administering the council’s trust account.

The state improved its grade in 2012 in its success at preventing the establishment of invasive species. To prevent invasive species from moving into Oregon, legislation was passed requiring imported firewood to be heat-treated and labeled, preventing the introduction of wood boring pests, including the emerald ash borer and Asian longhorn beetle.

Oregon was successful in preventing the introduction of marine aquatic invasive species from the Japanese dock that washed ashore on Agate Beach in June. The dock contained numerous live marine invasive species, which were buried in the sand before the dock was dismantled.

The state was given a B+ for its reporting system for invasive species. Oregon was rated on its website hotline www.oregoninvasiveshotline.org, which received 1,038 reports since its introduction. The OISC launched a tri-state Squeal on Pigs campaign in 2012 that provided a hotline for people to report suspected feral swine. The OISC also launched a “Firewood Buddy” application for smartphones.

Oregon maintained an A grade in the Outreach and Education category for its work within the state and with surrounding states. Oregon’s statewide action plan received a A- to A grade for its work to reinstate the Aquatic Invasive Species Task Force.

Oregon maintained a B grade in the trust account category. The Invasive Species Control Account currently has $353,556. For Oregon to improve this grade in 2013, it needs to develop ways to secure $5 million in the account.

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