What are invasive plants, insects and diseases?
The introduction of new species from one ecosystem into another is a process that has occurred countless times since life first arose on Earth. Some of these new species fit in where they can allowing the ecosystem to adapt over time. Other species can be much more aggressive and when they gain a foothold, they can overwhelm the existing ecosystem and force native species to adapt, move or risk extinction.
This process continues to this day but in recent decades it has been greatly accelerated by the actions of people who introduce new plants, animals, insects and diseases into the Island's ecosystems.
What terrestrial invasive species are found on PEI Today?
|Common Name||Latin Name||Special Notes|
|Japanese Knotweed||Fallopia japonica||Very aggressive, forming dense thickets that shade out most native plant species|
|Bittersweet Nightshade||Solanum dulcamara||Vine-like plant found in many habitats.
Berries are poisonous to humans.
|Wild Cucumber||Echinocystis lobata||Prefers rich moist soils.
Vine-like spreading out like carpet over surrounding vegetation.
|Garlic Mustard||Alliaria petiolata||Localized but very aggressive.|
|Giant Hogweed||Heracleum mantegazzianum||Localized near ditches, stream banks and disturbed soils.
Sap is very irritating to human skin.
|Himalayan Balsam||Impatiens glandulifera||Extremely aggressive.
Found in moist areas near streams and ditches.
|Common Name||Proper Name||Special Notes|
|Japanese beetle||Popillia japonica||
Feeds on beans, strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, grapes, cherries,
|Gypsy Moth||Lymantria dispar||Feeds on a wide range of deciduous species.
Localized on PEI
|Viburnum Leaf Beetle||Pyrrhalta viburni||Strips the leaves off viburnum species including Snowball Bush, Wild Raisin, Highbush Cranberry and Hobble Bush|
|Balsam Wooly Adelgid||Adelges piceae||Often kills healthy mature Balsam Fir and other fir species in eastern North America.|
|Brown Longhorn Spruce Beetle||Tetropium fuscum||Can cause significant mortality to Acadian Forest spruces
Not currently found on PEI but widespread in adjacent areas of Nova Scotia
Where can I get more information on invasive species?
The PEI Invasive Species Council web site has excellent information and resources designed to help Islanders' identify and deal with invasive species.
The Forests, Fish and Wildlife Division offers more information on invasive species through the Facebook page: Tree Insects and Diseases: PEI