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Tag: Introduced organisms
  • Flowering Rush Control in Hydrodynamic Systems: Part 2: Field Demonstrations for Chemical Control of Flowering Rush

    Abstract: A series of 10 water-exchange studies were conducted from 2019 to 2021 at two sites, Clover Island and Osprey Point, within the McNary Pool of the Columbia River on the Oregon-Washington border. Six of the studies incorporated a barrier curtain or bubble curtain, whereas the other four studies did not include any device to mitigate water exchange. Once annually, diquat aquatic herbicide was applied concurrently with rhodamine water tracing (RWT) dye at the Osprey Point site (2019–2021) to control flowering rush. An additional plot, Clover Island Reference, served as the nontreated control to the Osprey Point treatment plot. Pre- and posttreatment vegetation surveys were conducted in 2019, 2020, and 2021 to determine flowering rush control, treatment impacts to water quality, and nontarget species response. This study sought to (1) document the use of barrier curtains and bubble curtains as potential methods for reducing water exchange and increasing herbicide concentration exposure times within potential flowering rush treatment areas, (2) evaluate bulk water exchange and selective control of flowering rush under varying reservoir operations, and (3) use the results from these studies to provide guidance for managing submersed flowering rush infestations on the McNary Pool, Columbia River, and similar run-of-the-river impoundments.
  • Initial Rearing, Release, and Establishment of Biological Control Agent Pseudophilothrips ichini to Control Brazilian Peppertree (Schinus terebinthifolia) in South Texas Ecosystem Restoration Projects

    Abstract: Control of the invasive Brazilian peppertree (Schinus terebinthifolia) is a major cost component of US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) ecosystem restoration (ER) projects in South Texas, specifically the USACE Galveston district (SWG) Resacas at Brownsville, Texas, ER Project. Biological control has been developed as a sustainable tool to lower long-term weed management costs. Although a biological control program for S. terebinthifolia has been in operation in Florida since 2019, no similar program existed in Texas until initiated by the Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) in 2020. Since 2021, the biological control agent Pseudophilothrips ichini has been reared at ERDC. This technical report details rearing, release, and establishment efforts from fall 2020 to spring 2023 to provide control of S. terebinthifolia in South Texas USACE ER project locations. Initial observations on impact and potential limitations to biological control in hot climates such as those of South Texas are also discussed.
  • Estimating Present Value Cost of Invasive Emerald Ash Borer (Agrilus planipennis) on USACE Project Lands

    PURPOSE: The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is responsible for stewardship of approximately 12.5 million acres across the United States. USACE’s Environmental Stewardship program mission is to protect, preserve, and restore significant ecological resources on USACE project lands. Since the early 2000s, non-native and invasive Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) has killed hundreds of millions of ash trees in the US, becoming the most destructive and costly invasive forest insect in North America. This research effort estimates the cost of managing EAB damage to USACE projects including treatment, removal, or removal and replacement of dying/dead ash trees. The results suggest potential impact to more than 122,800 USACE project acres in currently infested counties including 181,000 ash trees. While not all damaged trees require removal, many USACE recreation sites have ash trees that pose an increased risk to humans and structures thus requiring removal of EAB infected trees. The widespread and pervasive impacts of EAB will have significant costs associated with removal and replacement of ash trees that could be hazardous to recreational users at the projects. Data from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) database, and methods developed by Kovacs et al. (2010) were utilized to calculate yearly present value costs of EAB to USACE projects from 2006-2026. Overall EAB impacts are estimated at $121.6 million across 201 USACE projects evaluated in this study. Increased efforts to limit EAB spread and perform measures of control are warranted to reduce potential cost to USACE.
  • Comparison of Generic and Proprietary Aquatic Herbicides for Control of Invasive Vegetation; Part 3: Submersed Plants

    Abstract: Herbicide selection is key to efficiently managing nuisance vegetation in our nation’s waterways. After selecting the active ingredient, there still remains multiple proprietary and generic products to choose from. Recent small-scale research has been conducted to compare the efficacy of these herbicides against floating and emergent species. Therefore, a series of mesocosm and growth chamber trials were conducted to evaluate subsurface applications of the following herbicides against submersed plants: diquat versus coontail (Ceratophyllum demersum L.), hydrilla (Hydrilla verticillata L.f. Royle), southern naiad (Najas guadalupensis (Sprengel) Magnus), and Eurasian watermilfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum L.); flumioxazin versus coontail, hydrilla, and Eurasian watermilfoil; and triclopyr against Eurasian watermilfoil. All active ingredients were applied at concentrations commonly used to manage these species in public waters. Visually, all herbicides within a particular active ingredient performed similarly with regard to the onset and severity of injury symptoms throughout the trials. All trials, except diquat versus Eurasian watermilfoil, resulted in no differences in efficacy among the 14 proprietary and generic herbicides tested, and all herbicides provided 43%–100% control, regardless of active ingredient and trial. Under mesocosm and growth chamber conditions, the majority of the generic and proprietary herbicides evaluated against submersed plants provided similar control.
  • Chemical Management Strategies for Starry Stonewort: A Mesocosm Study

    Abstract: US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) approved algaecides and herbicides are frequently utilized to manage nuisance algae and aquatic macrophytes. However, there is limited information available on the effectiveness of these products for the management of starry stonewort. Thus, the goal of this research was to discern effective chemical control products for later growth stages of starry stonewort using mesocosm studies. Eleven treatments were evaluated using various combinations of four copper-based products, endothall, diquat, and carfentrazone – all with USEPA registrations for use in aquatic sites. To assess treatment efficacy, water quality, photophysiology, biomass changes, and bulbil viability were evaluated. Nine of the eleven treatments yielded lower dissolved oxygen concentrations and higher specific conductance when compared to the control. Photophysiological response varied by condition, but seven of eleven treatments resulted in significantly lower fluorescent and maximum fluorescent yield. Five of these also exhibited significantly lower average photosynthetic yields, with combination treatments resulting in more drastic decreases. Ten of the eleven treatments had significantly less biomass compared to the control when measured via wet weight; however, only four treatments were significant when measured via dry weight. Lastly, all conditions utilizing copper-based products significantly reduced bulbil viability while non-copper products had no impact.
  • Comparison of Generic and Proprietary Aquatic Herbicides for Control of Invasive Vegetation : Part 2. Emergent Plants

    Abstract: Aquatic herbicides are one of the most effective and widespread ways to manage nuisance vegetation in the US After the active ingredient is selected, often there are numerous proprietary and generic branded products to select from. To date, limited efforts have been made to compare the efficacy of brand name and generic herbicides head to head; therefore, at tot al of 20 mesocosm trials were conducted to evaluate various 2,4 -D, glyphosate, imazapyr, and triclopyr products against alligatorweed (Alternanthera philoxeroides (Mart.) Griseb.), southern cattail (hereafter referred to as cattail, Typha domingensis Pers.), and creeping water primrose (hereafter referred as primrose, Ludwigia peploides (Kunth) P.H. Raven). All active ingredients were applied to foliage at broadcast rates commonly used in applications to public waters. Proprietary and generic 2,4 -D, glyphosate, imazapyr, and triclopyr were efficacious and provided 39 to 99% control of alligatorweed, cattail and primrose in 19 of the 20 trials. There were no significant differences i n product performance except glyphosate vs. alligatorweed (trial 1, Rodeo vs. Roundup Custom) and glyphosate vs. cattail (trial 1, Rodeo vs. Glyphosate 5.4). These results demonstrate under small -scale conditions, the majority of the generic and proprietary herbicides provided similar control of emergent vegetation, regardless of active ingredient.
  • Aligning Research and Management Priorities for Nitellopsis obtusa (Starry Stonewort)

    Abstract: In 2018, the US Army Corps of Engineers and Washington and Waukesha Counties in Wisconsin hosted a workshop on the invasive macroalga starry stonewort (Nitellopsis obtusa). Leading water resource managers (agencies and commercial applicators), researchers, regulators, and other interested parties discussed issues surrounding starry stonewort invasions in the Great Lakes Region (GLR). Technical sessions presented information on current research, invasion monitoring, early detection, rapid-response efforts, and operational management activities. Research summaries included invasion in Lake Ontario, prediction of invasion risk in Minnesota and Wisconsin using water chemistry data, and bulbil efficacy and distribution modeling in New England. In addition, the workshop offered summaries of attempted chemical and mechanical control tactics. Following presentations on previous studies, workshop participants identified research and management priorities. Critical research gaps identified from this workshop include (a) better understanding of the biology, invasion ecology, and management of starry stonewort; a greater understanding of distribution and movement, especially in the Great Lakes basin; enhanced population monitoring, applied research, and management strategies; and increased technical cooperation across government, academia, industry, and nonprofit organizations. Conclusions from this meeting will help prioritize future efforts focused on the adaptive management of starry stonewort in the United States and Canada.
  • PUBLICATION NOTICE: Incidence of Zebra Mussel on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Structures

     Link: Number: ERDC/CERL TR-20-2Title: Incidence of Zebra Mussel on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers StructuresBy K. James Hay, Irene E. MacAllister, Rebekah C. Wilson, and Abigail M. BrakeApproved for Public Release; Distribution is Unlimited January 2020Abstract: Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) are