Lessoning Loosestrife: Using Beetles to Control Purple Loosestrife

Lessoning Loosestrife: Using Beetles to Control Purple Loosestrife Liz Duff Education Coordinator - Salt Marsh Science Project Mass Audubon & Beth Suedmeyer Restoration Planner Wetlands Restoration Program MA CZM Lessoning Loosestrife Outline Essential Understandings Wetlands have important functions that humans protect Building Blocks

(vocabulary) Wetland Wetland Protection Act, Wetland Functions Historical impacts to wetlands Threats to wetlands Invasive species are a threat to some Invasive species of the wetland functions. Guiding Questions What is a Wetland? What is the Wetland Protection Act? What are functions of wetlands that the WPA protects? Why do wetlands need protection? What threatens wetlands? What are historical impacts to wetlands? How do people protect wetlands? What threats to ecosystems do

invasive species pose? Enabling Activities/Materials on Disk Frameworks connections Inquiry activity: Where does the wetland begin? Wetland Earth and Space Metaphors Wetland Observations 5 (Gr. 3-5) 1 Understanding the Wetlands (Gr. 6-8) Protection Act Conservation Commission Questions Performance Task Assessment Assignment. Loosestrife impact powerpoint, Loosestrife impact worksheet

Life Science 9,13 (Gr. 3-5), 17 (Gr. 6-8), 6.2 (H.S.) Restoration Stewardship Biocontrol Galerucella Beetles Biocontrol of Purple Loosestrife How can people help wetlands? How Powerpoint, Loosestrife Life can we help? Cycle Powerpoint Life Science 9 (Gr. 3-5), 17 (Gr. 6-8), 6.2 (H.S.) Raising and releasing beetles is a Plant and beetle life

way that students and teachers can cycles. contribute to wetland health. Beetle rearing Checklists and Instructions, Beetle Rearing Guide, Beetle Life Cycle, How Many Beetles? Worksheet, Raising Beetles Powerpoint Life Science 9, 10(Gr. 3-5), 13, 17 (Gr. 6-8), 6.2 (H.S.) Humans are working to protect and restore wetlands Monitoring wetlands is a way to check how successful restoration efforts have been.

Monitoring protocols Percent Cover Plant Parts Plant identification Plant and Beetle Life Cycles Data analysis Mapping invasive species and beetle damage is a way to assess how widespread the problem is, and to Mapping methods. begin to plan how to best approach the problem. Background Materials Frameworks, Timelines, Safety, Vocabulary, Scientific Articles

How can we help support wetland health? Plant observation activity. Percent Inquiry, Life How can we study whether the beetles cover activity. Monitoring Science 9 (Gr. 3are having an impact? preparation. Monitoring 5), 13, 17 (Gr. 6Protocols. 8), 6.2 (H.S.) How can mapping loosestrife and beetle damage help to develop a plan for purple loosestrife control? Mapping loosestrife and beetle damage. How do we prepare for field trips? What have scientists learned already about purple loosestrife and biocontrol? How long does this take? What does

that word mean? Additional resources? CZM Protocols in detail, Frameworks connections, Research on Impact of Purple Loosestrife, Safety Checklist and Chaperone Letter, Suggested Resources, Vocabulary, Materials Cost List Earth and Space 1 (Gr. 6-8) MA Educational Framework Connections Frameworks connections Grades 3-5 Grades 6-8 5. Recognize and discuss the different properties of soil, including color, texture (size of particles), the ability to retain water, and the ability to support the growth of plants.

1. Recognize, interpret, and be able to create models of the earths common physical features in various mapping representations, including contour maps. 13. Give examples of ways in which organisms interact and have different functions within an ecosystem that enable the ecosystem to survive. Life Science Living things and their environment: 13. Give examples of ways in which organisms interact and have different functions within an ecosystem that enable the ecosystem to survive. Central Concept: Ecology is the interaction among organisms and between

organisms and their environment. 7. Give examples of how changes in the environment (drought, cold) have caused some plants and animals to die or move to new locations (migration). Life Science Changes in Ecosystems Over Time: 17 Identify ways in which ecosystems have changed throughout geologic time in response to physical conditions, interactions among organisms, and the actions of humans. Describe how changes may be catastrophes such as volccanic eruptions or ice storms. 6.2 Analyze changes in population size and biodiversity (speciation and

extinction) that result from the following: natural causes, changes in climate, human activity, and the introduction of invasive, non-native species. Earth and Space Life Science 9. Recognize plant behaviors, such as the way seedlings stems grow toward light and their roots grow downward in response to gravity. Recognize that many plants and animals can survive harsh environments because of seasonal behaviors, e.g., in winter, some animals hibernate, and other animals migrate. Life Science 10. Give examples of how organisms can cause

changes in their environment to ensure survival. Explain how some of these changes may affect the ecosystem High School Lessoning Loosestrife A E B F C G D Pretty Purple Plague Invasive Species Defined ~

Organisms not native to our region and its introduction is harmful to the The Invasive Species Threat In their native environment species are kept in check by natural controls, like predators and food supply. They are part of a balanced system. When a species is introduced into a new landscape, and it is able to survive and establish itself, the consequences for the environment can be devastating. Japanese knotweed Oriental bittersweet

Perennial pepperweed Consequences Invasive species globally are the second greatest threat to biodiversity Have contributed directly to the decline of 42% of the threatened and endangered species in the United States. Examples of invasive aquatic invertebrates Club tunicate The annual cost to the US economy is estimated at $120 billion a year

Source- The Nature Conservancy Zebra mussels Its here Add some of most fascinating abilities of pL Original Pathways of introduction Early 1800s, introduction via ship ballast and raw wool Horticultural, honey production, and herbal uses Means of distribution Wind and water Wildlife Human movements (Canals, Highways) and Disturbance

Source: Thompson, Daniel Q., Ronald L. Stuckey, Edith B. Thompson. 1987. Spread, Impact, and Control of Purple Loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) in North American Wetlands. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 55 pages. Ecological Impacts of Purple Loosestrife Reduction in plant biodiversity Degradation of wildlife habitat Alteration of wetland function Blossey, B., L. C. Skinner, and J. Taylor. 2001. Impact and management of Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) in North America. Biodiversity and Conservation. A unique solutionbiological control! Specific to target and selfperpetuating Long-term control of purple loosestrife (but not eradication)

Requires lower inputs (but possibly longer to realize effects) Biological control (biocontrol) defined~ The use of natural enemies to reduce the damage caused by a pest population, such as an invasive wetland plant. Ultimate goal: Restore habitat and function; give native species a competitive chance. Meet the Beetles Galerucella species Is this safe?

USDA regulates the use of biocontrol organisms. Leaf-eating beetles, Galerucella calmariensis and G. pusilla, were approved for U.S. release in 1992 following a lengthy process that determined host-specificity (no negative impacts to other plants) and effectiveness of control. Research was conducted, primarily at Cornell University, and included: Quarantine No-choice tests (in lab) Initially tested on small scale field plots in the US, Then long term monitoring of beetles was evaluated for establishment, spread, impact on the target species, and impact on nontarget species. Study references for host specificity Kaufman L.N.; Landis D.A. (2000) Host Specificity Testing of Galerucella calmariensis L. on Wild and Ornamental Plant Species. Biological Control, Volume 18, Number 2, pp. 157-164(8). Blossey, B., Schroeder, D., Hight, S.D., and Malecki, R.A. (1994) Host specificity and environmental impact of two leaf beetles (Galerucella calmariensis and G. pusilla) for biological control of purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria). Weed Sci., 42: 134-140. Kok, L.T., McAvoy, T.J., Malecki, R.A., Hight, S.D., Drea, J.J., and Coulson, J.R. (1992) Host specificity tests of Galerucella calmariensis (L.) and G. pusilla(Duft.), potential biological

control agents of purple loosestrife, Lythrum salicaria L. Bio. Control, 2: 282-290. Malecki, R.A., Blossey, B., Hight, S.D., Schroeder, D., Kok, L.T., and Coulson, J.R. (1993) Biological control of purple loosestrife: a case for using insects as control agents, after rigorous screening, and for integrating release strategies with research. BioSci., 43: 680-686. History in MA Released at two national wildlife refuges (Parker River and Great Meadows) began releasing Galerucella beetles in1996/98. MA Wetland Restoration Program (WRP) coordinated first release in 2000 at a Walpole site. Since then WRP has coordinated releases at 26 other sites. Total beetles released since 2000 approximately 300,000. WRP Purple Loosestrife Biocontrol Sites Whats happening in the wetland The plant grows bigger during the summer and grows flowers at the end of

the summer. MAY Emerge to feed and mate JUNE egg clusters deposited on stem and leaves First 2 years of purple loosestrife growth AUG Second generation emerges JULY Larva feeding on leaves

WINTER as adults dormant in soil JULY- AUG Pupa in soil Diagram from MSU Purple Loosestrife Project Upper Elementary Lessons Student Workbook. New Mapping initiative Examine Purple Loosestrife Stands and report observations (beetle presence and damage). Reporting Observations via Google Maps You can add your observations to the map! Beetles have dispersed as far as 10 miles from release sites.

Monitoring Standard methodology used across the U.S. Monitoring plots are 1x1 m quadrats, marked with wood stakes or PVC pipe. Monitor twice each year for at least three years. Document changes at site (and of each plot) with photos 10m Release plot Photo reference point Monitoring methods Spring Monitoring includes: Visual assessment of the abundance of Galerucella eggs, larvae, and adults,

Estimation of damage to purple loosestrife plants, Estimation of percent cover and count of stems of loosestrife and cattails. Fall Monitoring includes: Estimation of percent cover and count of stems of loosestrife and cattails. Height of five tallest loosestrife and Cattails stems, Measurements of infloresences and flowers. Qualitative and quantitative observations of other insect and plant species. Why monitor? Looking at the data over time helps us to see if there are any trends -Are the purple loosestrife plants responding to the introduction of the beetles? Hypothesis: Purple loosestrife will be reduced by the introduction of the Galerucella beetles. Does the field collected data support this hypothesis? The data collected allows us to look at this reduction in more than one way. Are there changes in Purple LoosestrifesStem height? Space that it is taking up (percent cover)? Seed production? We also expect to see changes in other plants growing

alongside the purple loosestrife. HANDS ON Demonstration of Monitoring Methods Results Walpole Site Three releases (1st in 2000, total 30,000 beetles) Photo documentation of quadrats Quadrat #2, 2002 Quadrat #2, 2004 Monitoring Data for Walpole Site Summary Average of All Quads by Year 70 60 50 40 30

20 10 0 2000 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 % COVER #STEMS % cover/# stems Releases happened in 2000, 2001, 2002. Five plots monitored. No data collected for 2001. Beetle Rearing Release and Damage Acknowledgements

Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program USFWS Coastal Americas Foundation Corporate Wetlands Restoration Partnership EPA 5-star Restoration Program & grant team Site coordinators and volunteers Image and slide use Donna Ellis CT Beetle Farmer Program MSU Purple Loosestrife Project

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