management action guidelines

MI Paddle Stewards management and follow up action guide


June 7, 2024 - <>, Michigan Sea Grant,

Knowing where invasive plants occur is the first step in deciding how they can be managed effectively. Also, if it’s an area you visit often, you may be the first one to notice that a new plant has arrived!

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You found and reported an invasive aquatic plant. What's next?

Here's an action guide for management and follow up.

If it’s on the Michigan watchlist, finding it might launch a state-funded management response. Contact your local Cooperative Invasive Species Managment Areas (CISMA ) or find relevant agency staff on the Michigan watchlist page for further direction.

If it’s not on the Michigan watchlist, you or the property owner have the opportunity to take action. If it’s not on your property, find out who owns or manages it. Your county office can often help. After that, you could contact the landowner to share what you found, what impacts it may have, and management options. You might offer to contact a local watershed, conservation group, or CISMA to host a work day to remove the species. Your local CISMA might also have grant funding.

If it’s on your property, look up best management practices for the species. Contact your local CISMA for expert advice. Dive deeper with the Michigan Landowner's Guide to Aquatic Invasive Species Management.

When you’re ready to move forward, determine whether the species can effectively be hand removed (e.g. pulled). If not, but the plant isn’t causing problems, management may not be necessary. Try to contain it and prevent it from spreading by cleaning any vehicles and gear that pass through this area. Get activity-specific advice for cleaning gear and preventing spread at

If it can’t be hand-pulled and it needs to go, chemical control may be required. In that case, and/or if plants are in standing water, you may need to get a permit from the state of Michigan or hire a contractor. To find local contractors, ask your CISMA, check the MDARD list, or contact the EGLE Aquatic Nuisance Control Program. Your CISMA may also know of larger projects that yours could be bundled with, reducing costs. Or ask your neighbors if they have the same invasive species and hire a contractor together. Follow best management practices for hiring a contractor and make sure work is conducted with appropriate chemicals at the correct time of the year.

If the species can be hand-pulled, remove as much as possible and place into double-layered black garbage bags for disposal. You may need to label the bags as “invasive plants.” Check with your waste hauler, and dive deeper with the Guide to Invasive Plant Disposal

If possible, try to manage the entire infestation in one year. Monitor the species for re-growth each year and repeat treatments as necessary. If you cannot remove the patch in one year, focus on managing small sections or around the edges to control the spread. Remember to decontaminate your equipment using guidelines from MI Paddle Stewards or



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