GLSC Works With U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service To Study Management Strategies For Invasive Phragmites australis

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U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Collaborate To Develop Phragmites australis Control Method.

Phragmites Experimental Tank Setup

Experimental tank set-up located at the University of Michigan’s Matthaei Botanical Gardens (Ann Arbor, Michigan) in June 2021. Within each tank a random subset of Phragmites australis plants was elevated to different heights to apply various water depth treatments. These experiments will help better understand how water level contributes to control efforts.

(Credit: Spenser Widin, USGS - GLSC. Public domain.)

Through a grant from the Science Support Partnership program, USGS researchers (GLSC, Ann Arbor, Michigan), in collaboration with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, began a 14-week controlled greenhouse experiment examining the effectiveness of cut-to-drown Phragmites management strategies. The experiment included 162 individually potted invasive Phragmites australis plants that were subjected to various combinations of submergence levels and stem cutting treatments. In an effort to help land managers take advantage of historic high water levels within the Great Lakes, this study is part of a larger multi-year project aimed at filling critical gaps in understanding the consequences of high lake levels on Phragmites spread and the long-term success of cut-to-drown Phragmites management strategies.