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Crews halting spread of invasive weeds like crupina along Lake Chelan

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Purple flowers of the Common Crupina is federally listed as a noxious weed. (Photo courtesy of Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board)

CHELAN, WA – Along the upper slopes of Lake Chelan, a noxious weed continues to reduce native forage and the quality of wildlife habitat. For the next six weeks, crews from the Forest Service and Washington Conservation Corps will be doing their part to stop it in its tracks.

“For years, we have been able to successfully halt the spread of crupina into new areas of the Forest while completely eliminating some existing patches” said Chelan District Ranger, Kari Grover Wier. “The labor intensive process requires crews to pull and hand-spray this invasive weed.”

Introduced decades ago in the west from the Mediterranean, Common Crupina is classified as a Class A noxious weed requiring eradication. The infestation on the Forest is located between the Prince Creek drainage and Hunts Bluff along the Lakeshore Trail and is the only known location of crupina in Washington State.

“This project is part of a cooperative effort by the Crupina Task Force to prevent the potential spread of crupina to other areas in the State,” added Grover Wier. “We are also partnering with the Chelan County Weed Board to treat infestations that span the boundaries between private and public land.”     

Recreationists and the general public can help control the spread of crupina by learning how to recognize and avoid it, especially when hiking the popular Lakeshore Trail in the Chelan Ranger District. 

  • Hikers should limit off-trail travel in the infested area to avoid spreading weed seeds.  Information and identification guides about the invasive plant are located on bulletin boards at both ends of the Lakeshore trail.
  • If you discover a crupina patch without survey flags, please report this location to the Chelan Ranger District (509) 682-4900.
  • Please do not remove any crupina from the area to prevent unintentional transport of seeds.

Get the latest forest news and alerts by texting ‘follow OkaWenNF’ to 40404, ‘liking’ us on Facebook or following us on twitter @OkaWenNF. The mission of the USDA Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.

(Submitted by Holly Krake, US Forest Service)

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