What is an Invasive Species?
Invasive species reproduce and spread quickly. They can thrive in a broad range of habitat conditions, and can often out-compete other species. This species invades and blocks native plants from growing. Invasive species are spread by human and animal transporting, crops and escaping garden plants. These non-native species may have no native predators to help decrease their spread.
An invasive species found in Aurora is the Emerald Ash Borer, an invasive insect that kills all types of healthy ash trees. The Emerald Ash Borer poses no risk to humans; however it is a major threat to our Town's forests.
Noxious Weeds that can be found in Aurora that cause human harm include:
Poison Ivy, a harmful weed that produces clusters of three leaves, it can be found along trails and wooded areas. When the sap from this plant comes in contact with the skin, it produces blisters and irritation.
Wild Parsnip, often found in ditches, trails, and residential properties. When the sap from this plant comes in contact with human skin then is exposed to sunlight it causes severe burns and blisters.
Giant Hogweed, found alongside roads, streams and in open spaces. Similar to the Wild Parsnip, the sap from this plant can cause severe blisters, burns, and scars. The effects of this plant are further intensified when exposed to sunlight. If contact occurs with eyes it may cause loss of vision.
Residents can help control the spread of invasive non-native species by becoming aware of them and acting to limit their spread. Avoid the transportation of firewood or live bait while travelling or boating. Clean all equipment thoroughly to remove seeds, leaves, and mud. Use Native plants in gardens and landscaping. To find out which plants are safe to use check out this 'grow me instead' guide from the Ontario's Invading Species Awareness Program Website, as well as the Landowners Guide to Managing & Controlling Invasive Plants.
Other invasive species found in the Town of Aurora are European Common Red, Japanese Knotweed and Dog-Strangling Vine. These three invasive species are regulated as a restricted species under the Ontario Invasive Species Act, 2015.
What can you do to stop invasive species?
- Learn to identify these species
- Use designated trails and keep pets on a leash to avoid accidentally spreading of these invaders
- Learn to effectively and environmentally manage these invasive species on your private property
- Buy native species to plant
- Encourage people to report any illegal importing, distribution or sale of Dog-strangling vine and Japanese Knotweed
For more information on how to deal with invasive species visit: invadingspecies.com/invaders/plants-terrestrial/
For more information or to report an invasive species in Aurora, please contact 905-727-3123 ext. 3233.