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CONTACT: Great Bay Estuarine Research Reserve
Rachel Stevens 603 778-0015
April 12, 2011

“Pulling Together” to Help Combat Invasive Plants

WeedWrenches Available for Free Loan

GREENLAND, N.H. -- Groups working to combat invasive plants on the seacoast can now borrow some tough "WeedWrenching" tools to make their efforts more effective. The Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, a part of the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, has announced a new invasive plant removal tool loan program funded by the Lamprey River Advisory Committee.

The program establishes a storehouse of specialized tools to be used as a community resource. Called WeedWrenches, these tools are useful for manual removal of woody stemmed invasive plants such as glossy buckthorn, autumn olive, multiflora rose and honeysuckles. Currently, a total of 26 WeedWrenches are available in four different sizes -- enough tools to equip large work groups.

"The goal of this program is to provide an easy, free way for conservation commissions, land trusts, natural resource managers, restoration ecologists, individual landowners and other conservation partners to carry out community invasive plant control projects," said Rachel Stevens, Stewardship Coordinator for the  Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve.

The tools are housed at the Great Bay Discovery Center in Greenland and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. To make arrangements to borrow the tools, contact rachel.stevens@wildlife.nh.gov.  Loan of the tools is free; a brief form must be filled out about the project for which they will be used.

"We look forward to hearing from you and ask that you forward this to other conservation partners that may be interested." said Stevens.  "Together we can help maintain the ecological integrity of New Hampshire’s Great Bay and coastal watersheds."

New Hampshire’s Great Bay and coastal watersheds are a region of great biodiversity within the state and include special habitats such as pitch pine barrens, Appalachian oak-pine forest, salt marshes, and emergent and shrub wetlands. Invasive plants know no boundaries and frequently impact these vegetative communities and the wildlife they support.

The Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve is one of several partners in the regional New Hampshire Coastal Watershed Invasive Plant Partnership, which aims to protect the ecological integrity of natural habitats and economic vitality of managed lands in New Hampshire’s coastal watershed through activities that reduce the threat of invasive plants. Learn more about invasive plant control options on New Hampshire's seacoast at www.wildnh.com/marine/invasives.html.

More information about WeedWrenches can be found at www.weedwrench.com.

Visit the Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve at www.greatbay.org.

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