The Phragmites Adaptive Management Framework (PAMF)

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Detailed Description

This is an introductory video to an adaptive management approach for the invasive plant Phragmites australis in the Great Lakes basin. An adaptive management framework is an iterative process of robust decision making aimed at reducing uncertainty over time, for a variety of stakeholders with differing backgrounds and interests, via system monitoring.

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Location Taken: Great Lakes Basin, US

Video Credits

In cooperation with Great Lakes Phragmites Collaborative


Phragmites australis, also known as common reed, has grown in wetlands across North America for thousands of years. A recently introduced non-native variety of Phragmites has invaded much of North America over the last century. It spread quickly, out-competing native plants and degrading fish and wildlife habitat, lowering property value, and limiting recreational access to the beach and shoreline. In the Great Lakes region, it has already invaded an estimated 60,000 acres of shoreline as well as an unknown amount of inland areas. Landowners and agencies have been fighting back against Phragmites for years, and a number of treatments have been developed. However, it is difficult to know which option or combination of options to choose partly because treatment history and environmental conditions play a role in the effectiveness of each option. This can lead land managers to spend a lot of time and money on different treatments without knowing if their chosen approach is best for their land. Nonnative Phragmites is a regional problem, and we should focus on regional solutions. Every landowner benefits by sharing what's working and what's not working - a learning process that will save us a lot of time and money. To facilitate this regional learning process, a team from the Great Lakes Phragmites Collaborative is developing a framework to use adaptive management. The Phragmites Adaptive Management Framework (PAMF) will reduce uncertainty by providing treatment guidance specific to each Phragmites stand. The PAMF set-up team will focus on three activities. * First, they'll build a database to record patch size, treatment history, and outcome for each Phragmites patch included in PAMF. * They'll also develop unbiased models that adapt to treatment results. These models ensure that management guidance is based on the observed effectiveness from each round of treatment. * Finally, they will establish a standardized monitoring approach, which will allow managers across the basin to compare treatment effectiveness. Land managers who participate in PAMF have three responsibilities: * Consider the treatment option recommended by the models * Implement the standardized monitoring approach * And upload information to the database These land manager activities will occur on a regular cycle, starting with considering which treatment to use. After application, land managers will monitor for treatment effect. And this cycle ends with the land manager uploading information on which treatment they chose and how well it worked to the PAMF database. As this cycle repeats, the set-up team will use each round of information to update the models and improve the treatment guidance, allowing for adjustments to best management practices that are specific to each site. PAMF will create site-specific best management practices that help make sure land managers get the best bang for the buck. This approach can truly be a regional one, and, with your help, can be a process where every single treatment in the Great Lakes basin goes toward improving all future Phragmites management. Visit us online to learn more.