The Illinois Invasive Species Awareness Month (ISAM) which occurs in May, is a statewide effort dedicated to informing everyone in Illinois about the threat of invasive species. This includes invasive insects, plants, diseases and animals. The theme for this year’s ISAM is Preserving Illinois’ Wild Side. Each and every citizen in Illinois can help protect our state from the damage invasive species have on our woodlands and natural areas. Click here for a calendar of events held throughout the state on a variety of awareness topics. Event opportunities range from native plant sales to restoration projects.

What determines if a species is invasive? A species is invasive if it greatly harms the local ecology and economy. Productivity is reduced, diversity is limited in natural areas and wildlife habitat is hindered. Click here for a partial list of invasive species in Illinois. Everybody in Illinois impacts the role invasive species have on our state. Preventative measures include properly disposing bait and unwanted aquarium pets or plants, controlling invasive species on your property and purchasing species that are not invasive when landscaping. Other methods for participating in the battle against invasive species are volunteering to remove invasive species in natural areas and attending presentations on invasive species. Help make this year’s Illinois Invasive Species Awareness Month successful by joining in one of the many planned activities. Become aware of the impact invasive species have on our local environment!

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