Maine Invasive Species Network (MISN) brings together both professionals and amateurs who are interested in understanding and managing invasive species in Maine.

Our members work, among other places, at the Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry, University of Maine, Nature Conservancy, Colby College, Unity College, Soil and Water Conservation Districts, Maine Lakes Society, several land trusts, and for private land management companies. We also have many citizens who are simply concerned about land stewardship and preservation of natural ecosystems.

MISN and this website were conceived in October 2009, when a group of 45 people met in Augusta at the first meeting to bring together people who work intensively on invasive plants, animals, and other invasive species in Maine.

Please let us know if you want to join.

Purpose of MISN

  • serve as a communication tool;
  • help members identify and pursue collaborative projects;
  • support research on management of invasive species;
  • map invasive species populations;
  • present funding opportunities;
  • exchange species-specific information;
  • explore new tools to monitor populations;
  • develop and distribute educational materials;
  • provide outreach opportunities; and
  • exchange database tools.

Comments Needed on Proposed Invasive Plant Rules

The Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry is now seeking comments on adding 30 plants to the terrestrial invasive plant do-not-sell list and other amendments to the invasive plant rule.

CMR 01-001, Chapter 273 establishes criteria to evaluate non-native terrestrial invasive plants offered for sale or import in Maine that could have adverse economic and ecological impacts in Maine. This chapter also establishes the list of evaluated plants that meet the criteria and prescribes the restrictions on the distribution and sale of those plants.

The proposed amendments to this chapter seek to improve existing definitions, add new definitions, add 30 new species to the banned plant list, establish a “Watch List” of plants, add a new category of Species of Special Concern and better define the variance process.

The list of 30 new plants to potentially be added to the Do-Not-Sell list includes ten species that are commonly sold and another 20 that are rarely sold. The ten species most commonly found at Maine plant sellers are, Russian olive, wintercreeper euonymus, creeping Charlie, border privet, amur silvergrass, giant butterbur or fuki, Christmas berry, callery “Bradford” pear, European mountain ash, and common valerian.

Twenty-nine plants are proposed to be added to a new “Watch List.” These plants can still be sold or imported and will be the first species to be re-evaluated in the next 5-year review of the rules.

One plant, rugosa rose, is proposed to be added to a new category, “Species of Special Concern.” This category is added to provide a way to notify purchasers that certain species may be potentially invasive in very specific habitats but not invasive in other situations. Two options are proposed to inform purchasers about the potential risks of invasiveness through tags on individual plants or with signage at the point of sale. The Plant Health Program requests that commenters indicate which option is their preference.

Proposed rule including the full lists of plants (PDF, clean, easy to read copy)

Proposed rule including the full list of plants (PDF, marked up copy to see where the proposed changes vary from the existing rule)

A public hearing is scheduled for April 22, 2022 from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM in Room 101 of the Deering Building at 90 Blossom Lane in Augusta, Maine. A virtual option is also being offered for providing comments during the hearing:

Join on your computer or mobile app (Microsoft Teams) 
Or call in (audio only): +1 207-209-4724, Phone Conference ID: 670 518 716#

If you cannot attend the public hearing, written comments will be taken until 5:00 PM, Friday, May 6, 2022. Written comments should be sent to Gary Fish, Maine DACF, 28 SHS, Augusta, ME 04333-002 or emailed to gary.fish@maine.gov.

The Maine Forest Tick Survey Is Seeking Land Managers to Help with a Study

The Maine Forest Tick Survey, a project led by the University of Maine, was set up to study the impact land management has on ticks and tick-borne pathogens. We are seeking land managers or owners who plan to harvest timber or remove invasive plant species from wooded properties in the following counties: Androscoggin, Cumberland, Hancock, Knox, Kennebec, Lincoln, Sagadahoc, Waldo, and York. As part of an expansion to the Maine Forest Tick Survey’s research, we want to conduct tick surveys before and after major land management activities. If you own or manage a property that will be conducting management in the next three years (2021-2024), and are willing to let us assess tick densities, please email Elissa at elissa.ballman@maine.eduWe are additionally seeking landowners in Southern and Coastal Maine who own between 5 and 1,000 acres of wooded land to participate in our citizen science project. We will provide all the supplies and training necessary for landowners to collect ticks on their properties during July 2021. We will identify all collected ticks to species, test blacklegged tick nymphs for pathogens, and report all our findings to our volunteers. For more information and to sign up, please visit www.UMaine.edu/ForestTickSurvey.