PlayCleanGo Blog

5 Reasons to Care About the Endangered Species Act

Sep 17, 2019 11:32:50 AM / by Tina Casagrand

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A month ago, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service announced it may narrow the scope of the Endangered Species Act. While PlayCleanGo’s message promotes preventing the spread of invasive species, our members know their work is a means to an end: to protect the lands and waters that we love.

By some estimates, “400 of the 958 species listed as threatened or endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species Act are at risk primarily because of competition with and predation by non-indigenous species.” As recreationists, we all have opportunities to make big differences in the places we visit.

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4 Steps to Better Invasive Species Outreach

Sep 5, 2019 10:37:00 AM / by Jacqueline Lalley

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When you're trying to spread the word about invasive species, it can be hard to know you're making a difference. For agency leaders, people working on the ground, and recreationists involved in outreach efforts, evidence of impact can be hard to come by. 

Using communications goals and technology, marketing methodology, and consistent messages can help, both by providing measures of success that you can celebrate, and by guiding you toward activities that are more likely to reach people and change their behaviors. 

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Are Invasive Species a Visitor Issue?

Aug 20, 2019 8:00:00 AM / by Forest Eidbo

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Whether you paddle board, mountain bike, hike, or fish, you have experienced visitor management tools.

Water access, trail, and parking design all are visitor management. Signs, interpretive talks, trifold pamphlets, and campground hosts also are visitor management. We look at issues like wildfires, littering, wildlife harassment, and crowding through the lens of the visitor so why not invasive species?

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Established Infestations: What To Do With Invasives

Aug 7, 2019 11:25:00 AM / by Ethan Proud

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You’ve played, you’ve cleaned, and you’ve gone. And still your favorite outdoor ecosystem has fallen prey to invasive species. Is the battle over, or are there more ways to do your part?

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Setting Invasive Species Management Goals: Eradicate, Contain, Suppress

Jul 15, 2019 9:45:00 AM / by Ethan Proud

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While prevention is the most vital step in invasive species management, sometimes an infestation can’t be helped. Once a noxious weed infestation has been established on your property, you've got to figure out what to do with it. That can be a discouraging prospect. 

For example, let's say you discover a musk thistle infestation. After doing some research and consulting local experts, you learn this plant's seeds survive in the soil for 50 years, and controlling them can be daunting task. 

But total eradication isn't always a realistic or desirable goal when responding to an invasive species infestation. In fact, once you know an infestation exists, there are three different major control goals to consider: eradication, containment, and suppression.

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Battling the Hemlock Woolly Adelgid

Jul 11, 2019 9:50:00 AM / by Katie Grzesiak

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More and more people who enjoy the outdoors are helping to reduce the spread of invasive species such as spotted knapweed, Eurasian water-milfoil, and Asian longhorn beetle. They've been using boot brushes and boat washing stations, buying firewood where they burn it, and taking other action steps recommended by PlayCleanGo.

But in northwest lower Michigan, a new pest is providing new challenges: the hemlock woolly adelgid. Because of the ways it eats, lives, and travels, some additional steps are needed for recreationists to help stop its spread.

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Fond Fishing Memories Lead to Great Technology for Removing AIS

Jun 26, 2019 11:09:00 AM / by Edgar Rudberg

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As a kid I loved fishing on Lake Minnetonka, but my favorite memories were going up to my great aunt and uncle's home on Lake Mille Lacs. With a cigar in his mouth, my great uncle and I caught jumbo perch, eel pout, and walleyes a plenty. Rarely did a day of fishing not end with a fish fry. Fast forward 30+ years. Many things have changed.

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11 Father's Day Gifts For the Outdoor Dad

Jun 11, 2019 8:30:00 AM / by Hannah Bowers

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You have this person in your life. You may classify this person in a number of ways: unconventional, outdoorsy, adventurous, dirtbag. They may also go by Dad, Father, Step-Dad, Pops, or a number of other titles. And this person may seem hard to shop for. They have all the gear they need, and don’t really like extra “stuff” lying around. So what do you do?

Here are some gifts for the outdoor dad that you'll love to give — and they'll love to get, whether on Father's Day or any other special occasion.

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How To Get Involved In PlayCleanGo Awareness Week

May 28, 2019 8:30:00 AM / by Hannah Bowers

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The first-ever PlayCleanGo Awareness Week is taking place June 1–8, 2019 with events across North America!

As we get our gear out for the fun summer season of camping and outdoor adventures, will you pledge to take this week to learn all about invasive species and how they spread, become an expert at cleaning yourself, your gear, and your furry friends after your outside time, and take this opportunity to teach your friends?

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Finding a Passion and Career In Invasive Species Management

May 17, 2019 1:20:35 PM / by Ethan Proud

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Growing up active in school sports, I never had very much time to develop any hobbies and as a result I wasn’t sure what major I wanted in college-let alone a career for the rest of my life. I went in undecided, declared my major as psychology, switched to social work, but nothing really stuck. I worked at a hardware store during the summer and that didn’t help me make any decisions about my future.

Luckily for me, one of my friends suggested I apply at the Sublette County Weed and Pest (SCWP) District as a seasonal employee and make more money than I currently was. Always a sucker for a few more bucks, I applied and lo and behold I got the job. I knew nothing about invasive species and equated the job to something akin to landscaping. When our supervisors started our training and we sat through a slew of presentations on pesticides, applicator safety, and plant ID, I started to wonder what I had gotten myself into. 

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