PlayCleanGo Blog

Ethan Proud

Ethan is the Archuleta County Weed and Pest Supervisor in Pagosa Springs, Colorado. He is the Land Management Organizations representative on the PlayCleanGo National Advisory Council and serves on the Colorado Weed Managers Association’s education committee. He spends most of his free time outdoors, and finds it much more relaxing when he can enjoy the native ecosystems without seeing raging infestations of noxious weeds.

Recent Posts

New Invasive Species Should Be Your Priority

Jan 14, 2020 10:00:00 AM / by Ethan Proud


Established invasive species populations take time and money to control and are an eyesore that can alter migration routes, increase fine fuels for fires, and choke out native vegetation. It would make sense to assume that the most established infestation of invasive species would be public enemy number one, but it’s not. For widespread infestations, suppression and education are key to inch towards control. New invasive species should be at the top of every invasive species manager’s priority list.

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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


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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Finding a Passion and Career In Invasive Species Management

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


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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