Learn
about invasive species in Wisconsin.
Report
an invasive species in your area.
Order
invasive species publications.
Contact information
DNR invasive species staff

Report invasive species

We are working to keep invasive species out of Wisconsin. Early reports of new populations allow us to respond rapidly and control invasives before they spread into new areas. Select from the tabs below to report invasive species you have found.

Aquatic

I found a new aquatic invasive species not known to occur in my lake, wetland or stream. How do I report it to the DNR?

Follow one of the following links

If it is a plant

Deliver the specimen(s)

It is an animal

If it is a fish, contact your local fish biologist.

If you think you have caught a diseased fish, follow these steps.

If it is an animal other than a fish

Deliver the specimen(s)

Thank you for taking the time to collect, report and deliver your specimens. If you would like to learn more about aquatic invasive species, please visit the following website.

Wetlands

Please report invasive plants in wetlands and riparian areas!

If you observe an invasive plant you can email its location and photos to us at invasive.species@wisconsin.gov. Check the photos and descriptions of plants on the wetlands webpage if you need help identifying the plant you have observed.

  • Please complete the Invasive Plant Report Form [PDF] to report occurrences of invasive plants growing in wetlands or on streambanks in Wisconsin. If possible, please note the population size/density, habitat type and landowner name.
  • You must document the plant species. If possible, email with your form one or more photographs of the plant showing its identifying characteristics and some common object for scale. (You may also send in plant specimens to document the species - see below.)
  • Please provide the most accurate location data you can. Using GPS is best; note the datum being used (e.g. WGS 84, UTM, etc.). You may also note a location on a paper map; then go to the DNR’s Surface Water Data Viewer to easily find the desired location coordinates to report.
  • Send form and your identification evidence, either photos or plant specimens, (see below for instructions) to the DNR. Use the address provided on the form or send via email. Please indicate on subject line that the report is for a species found in a wetland or on a streambank.

Surveying particular wetlands for invasive plants

  • If you have checked a particular wetland or length of roadside ditch or streambank for specific invasive wetland plants you can report by using the Wetland Invasive Plant Monitoring form [PDF]. This form tells us where you looked and where you found invasives, giving us a better understanding of wetland health.

Gathering specimens for identification evidence

  • Fresh specimens: Diagnostic samples of the plant, especially flowers, fruits, stem section with leaves or whole plants can be sent by US mail. Package with a moist paper towel in a sealed plastic bag. Keep cool until mailing and send as soon as possible.
  • Pressed and dried specimens: To learn how to make pressed specimens, visit the UW-Green Bay Cofrin Center for Biodiversity [exit DNR]. Enclose each specimen in a newspaper sleeve between two stiff cardboard sheets and send by US mail.

A note about reed canary grass (Phalaris arundinacea): Please report reed canary grass only when it is a new, small infestation located in a high quality wetland, such as a State Natural Area.

Mailed specimens and reporting forms should be sent to:

Wisconsin DNR
Invasive Plants Project - ER/6
P.O. Box 7921
Madison, WI 53707-7921
608-267-5066

Terrestrial

Terrestrial plants

Reporting instructions

Check photos and descriptions on the website to help narrow the possibilities for plant identity. Be sure to include notes about site location and description, population size and control actions taken, if any.

  • Complete the Invasive Plant Report Form [PDF] to report occurrences of invasive plants growing in Wisconsin or near state borders. Please use one form for each sample.
    • If you prefer to use GPS (global positioning system) but do not have a GPS device, you can visit itouchmap.com [exit DNR] to find the precise location on a digital topographic map.
    • If using a GPS device, please note the datum being used (e.g. WGS 84, UTM, WI Transverse Mercator, etc).
    • Enclose form with your identification evidence: photographs, pressed plant specimens, or fresh specimens. See below for guidelines on each method.
  • Send to the Wisconsin DNR. Use address on form or submit by email.

Guidelines for identification evidence

  • Photographs. Use either film or a digital camera, and try to capture the maximum number of details. Focus on flowers, leaf shape, leaf & stem arrangement, and fruits. For a size scale, be sure to include a pencil, dollar bill, coin, or other object of a standard size. For giant hogweed, have a person stand near – but not touching! – the plant. Send by email or US mail (address below).
  • Fresh specimens. Diagnostic samples of the plant especially flowers, fruits, stem section with leaves or whole plants can be sent by US mail. Package with a moist paper towel in a sealed plastic bag. Keep cool until mailing and send as soon as possible.
  • Pressed and dried specimens. To make pressed specimens, visit the UW-Green Bay Cofrin Center for Biodiversity [exit DNR]. If you have a plant press or can make one, press plants providing as many plant structures as possible. Enclose the specimens – each in a newspaper sleeve – between two stiff cardboard sheets and send by US mail.

The Wisconsin Invasive Plants Reporting & Prevention Project is an Early Detection and Strategic Response initiative co-sponsored by the DNR and the Wisconsin State Herbarium, along with the cooperation of many organizations and individuals.

Send reporting form via email by using the "Submit by Email" button on the form.

Send specimen and reporting form to:

Wisconsin DNR
Invasive Plants Project - ER/6
P.O. Box 7921
Madison, WI 53707-7921

Plant pests & diseases

Visit the Forest Health site if you have trees that appear sick.

Check out the UW-Madison, Department of Entomology [exit DNR] to identify insects, both native and non-native. And visit the Insect Diagnostic Lab [exit DNR]to find instructions on how to send insect specimens.

To report emerald ash borer or gypsy moth, visit the appropriate DATCP site below:

Other terrestrial invertebrates listed under Chapter NR 40 can be reported by sending an email to Invasive.Species@wi.gov.

Vertebrates

Report any Prohibited or Restricted wildlife from Chapter NR 40 by sending an email to Invasive.Species@wi.gov

NR40 species

To report a Chapter NR40 regulated species or rule violation, email Jennifer Feyerherm, Invasive Species Program Specialist, or call 608-266-6437.

Last revised: Thursday January 30 2014