Smart Phone App Helps Citizens Fight Invasive Species

invasive-species-phoneThe University of Wisconsin Extension has made it easy for anyone to fight an invasive species in our state. Six months ago, they released a free smart phone app to help you report invasive plants the moment you find them.

The app is called “Bugwood,” and it’s available for the iPhone as well as for Android phones. You can get the app here.

How does it help? University of Wisconsin extension explains:

An app developed by the Great Lakes Early Detection Network (GLEDN) and Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System (EDDMapS) allows people to send pictures and locations of the invasive plants to an online mapping system. Land managers can use this information to respond to new pests as they are emerging.

…Reporting species through this app will result in the location being sent to local land managers registered with GLEDN once the observation is verified. Local groups such as Cooperative Weed Management Areas (CWMA) can then respond to these new infestations and elements before they spread.

Of course, as we head into the colder months, invasive species of just about any variety are certainly going to be a lot less of a problem for anyone. However, it’s good to know that tools like this are out there, available to be used once the weather warms up and these threats are once again on the horizon.

Together, we can help keep Wisconsin’s ecosystem safe and healthy so that we can all protect our ability to enjoy it!

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