The Upper White River Cooperative Weed Management Association (CWMA) is a collaborative effort among land owners, state and federal government agencies, and NGOs to address the effects of non-native invasive plants (NNIP) across jurisdictional/ownership boundaries within the Upper White River watershed. The Upper White River CWMA consists of the Town of Rochester, Green Mountain National Forest, Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, White River Partnership, Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation, and the Vermont Agency of Transportation.
The current focus is to conduct non-native invasive plant surveys and early detection rapid response (EDRR) projects on town roads and to develop community outreach and education programs. The focus area for all work is located in the Upper White River watershed, specifically, east of Route 100 from the Town of Granville south to the Town of Stockbridge. In May 2012, the Association hired a part-time project coordinator to assist with delivery of these goals.
If you are aware of NNIP in your community and would like to get involved, please feel free to call Suzanne Enser, Upper White River CWMA Project Coordinator, at 802.767.4261 x520.
Upper White River Cooperative Weed Management Association
The Upper White River CWMA applied for and received grant[i] money from the Pulling Together Initiative (National Fish and Wildlife Foundation) to hire a part-time project coordinator two days a week for 15 weeks, for two years. The work accomplished by that coordinator, Suzanne Enser, in 2012 is summarized below:
- Organized two volunteer events in Rochester: one for students, one for the community
- Surveyed all town roads (approximately 45 miles) on the east side of Route 100 in the towns of Granville, Hancock, Rochester, and Stockbridge, plus trails at Braintree Gap in Granville, Mt. Cushman in Rochester, and Riley Bostwick Wildlife Management Area in Rochester (excluding roads still closed due to flooding in Hancock)
- Implemented early-detection rapid-response (EDRR) control activities on15 infestations of garlic mustard, wild chervil, Japanese knotweed, and purple loosestrife
- Entered data for 150 infestations into iMap Invasives, an online database
- Created databases of:
- 15 EDRR sites as well as potential EDRR sites for future years
- Landowners with garlic mustard infestations in Rochester village
- Individuals who expressed interest in learning more about non-native invasive plants
- Reached out to the community by:
- Writing an article for the Herald about the Rochester School garlic mustard pull
- Posting information about the CWMA and the community garlic mustard pull event at vtinvasives.org
- Sending letters to landowners with garlic mustard infestations in Rochester
- Handing out copies of the USDA Invasive Plants Field and Reference Guide to interested individuals encountered during field work
- Submitting information about 2012 CWMA activities to the Connecticut River Watershed Invasive Species Initiative (CRWISI), and attending a CRWISI-sponsored webinar about non-native invasive species headed our way.
- Sharing information with town offices:
- 2012 CWMA activities and fact sheets sent to each town office
- Letter sent to Granville and Rochester select boards about CWMA activities along town roads
- Summary of survey results, with suggested next steps, to each town
The Upper White River CWMA also applied for and received granti money from the National Forest Foundation to hire:
- UVM LANDS crew to survey roads and trails (approximately 65 miles) on the Green Mountain National Forest that were affected by flooding from Tropical Storm Irene; data will reside in the Forest Service corporate database, NRIS, but is expected to be shared with iMap Invasives.
- Redstart Consulting to control Japanese knotweed at 4 high-priority sites on the Green Mountain National Forest.
In addition, the Green Mountain National Forest, one of the CWMA founding members, used retained receipts from Stewardship Contracting to hire the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps to pull wild chervil along 3 miles of FR101 in Granville.
[i] Grant funds were administered by the White River Partnership, and office facilities were provided by the Green Mountain National Forest; both are founding members of the CWMA.