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INVADER CRUSADERS RECOGNIZED ACROSS THE STATE

June 14, 2011

June is Invasive Species Month

MADISON -- The Wisconsin Council on Invasive Species has announced the 2011 Invader Crusader awards that are being given to several outstanding individuals and organizations across the state for their work to stop the spread of invasive species.

This year, Invader Crusader Awards will be given in conjunction with the Invasive Plants Association of Wisconsin's 10th Anniversary event on Saturday, June 18 at the Swamplovers Foundation property in Cross Plains, Wisconsin. More information about this event can be found at [ipaw.org] (exit DNR).

The 2011 recipients of Invader Crusader Awards are:

Professional
Volunteer

"It is important that we recognize and encourage all of the different individuals and organizations that are working tirelessly to keep Wisconsin's special places free of invasive species that choke out native plants and animals - both on land and water," said Paul Schumacher, chair of the council and Wisconsin Association of Lakes board member. "The fight to reduce invasive species' presence and keep them out of Wisconsin will be a long and hard battle for many years to come. We would not be able to do it without these and many other Invader Crusaders."

Since 2006, Invader Crusader Awards have honored Wisconsin citizens and organizations - both volunteer and professional -- for their significant contributions to the prevention, management, education, or research of invasive species that harm Wisconsin's land and waters. The award recognizes efforts working at all scales - from neighborhoods to statewide parks, lakes, and forests.

Invasive plants and animals threaten Wisconsin's water and land by outcompeting native plants and animals and by disrupting natural habitat systems. They also threaten the productivity and economic viability of Wisconsin's agricultural lands by creating overwhelming competition with crops. Millions of dollars, both public and private, are spent each year for the control of invasive plant and animal species in Wisconsin's waters, wildlands and agriculture lands.

From garlic mustard to Asian Carp, there are hundreds of invasive species on land and water already in Wisconsin and many more are on their way. If left unchecked, many of these plants, insects, and animals could permanently alter the quality of Wisconsin's precious natural areas that inspire residents and draw millions of tourists every year. That's why these Invader Crusaders play such an important role in the prevention and management of invasive species.

Invader Crusader awards are given during the month of June, which is Invasive Species Awareness Month. During June, the Wisconsin Council on Invasive Species advertises events in which hundreds of citizens of all ages across the state will take part on the website [invasivespecies.wi.gov] (exit DNR). These events include volunteer invasive species removal and education activities at nature centers, botanical gardens, natural areas, lakes, rivers, agricultural fields, parks, schools, institutions of higher learning, and more.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Thomas Boos, DNR - 608-266-9276 or Belle Bergner, 414-967-1350

Last Revised: Tuesday, June 14, 2011




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