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THE INVADER 2016 (volume 1)
January 20, 2016

Featured Event: AISC Annual Conference and AGM Featured Article: CFIA: New requirements for shipments through Canada Featured Species: Russian Olive

   2016 is a brand new year!!  The best time to plan for stopping the introduction and spread of invasive species.  This newsletter is published by the Alberta Invasive Species Council.  AISC can be contacted by email: or 587-999-0954.  The website: contains lots of information about invasive species.

AISC 3rd Annual Conference and AGM 

Thursday, March 10th, 2016  

9:00 am – 4:00 pm (registration opens 8:30 am)

Lacombe Memorial Centre (Centennial North), 5214 – 50 Ave, Lacombe AB

This Conference is a great opportunity to Learn, Network and Gain New Ideas!!!!  


Agenda Topics: Forest Management, CFIA Initiatives, Climate Change Impacts, Sniffing out Mussels, Biocontrol Agents, Recreation, update on AISC

Pesticide Applicator Credits are being applied for.

Ways you can save money!!

  • Register by March 4th**  Members $73.50 (GST included); Non-members $94.50 (GST included)
  • Purchase an annual AISC Membership; Individual $31.50 (GST included), Organizational $105 (GST included)  see right side of this page
  • Become a Sponsor of AISC  (contact
  • Organizational Members and Sponsors can register any number of people from their organization at the "members" price.
  • Special Half-Rate for Students: $36.75 (GST included) MUST REGISTER BY March 4th.

Starting March 5th registration increases: Members $95.55 (GST included), Non-members $116.55 (GST included)


**Three easy ways to register:

Using VISA or Mastercard on the ONLINE PAYMENTS part of this website

Request an invoice (email:

By cheque: Print FORM , fill it out and send it to AISC along with your cheque.

AWRAC (Alberta Weed Regulation Advisory Committee)

The purpose of AWRAC is to develop recommendations, for the Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, on regulating specific plant species.  AWRAC met for the first time in 2016, on January 12th in Lacombe.  Since inception in 2010, Gayah Sieusahai and Tim Dietzler have been the co-chairs.  Tim retired and Gayah moved to a new job.  Their leadership will be missed!  The new co-chairs are Nicole Kimmmel (AF) and Kendra Tippe (MD of Bighorn).  And in case you are wondering, the Minister, and Alberta Agriculture and Forestry are committed to the AWRAC committee and it's Terms of Reference.

The Committee decided to recommend Jimsonweed as a prohibited noxious species in the Weed Act Regulations.  

AWRAC has a recommendation in front of the Minister right now to make the following changes to the Weed Act Regulations:

           Prohibited noxious: African Rue, Alkali Swainsonpea, Pale/European Swallow-wort, Black Swallow-wort, Queen Anne's Lace

Noxious: Tall Hawkweed, Yellowdevil Hawkweed, Orange Hawkweed, Meadow Hawkweed

For more information on these species check out the Fact Sheets on the AISC website.


AISC Memberships

AISC memberships are good for the calendar year (Jan 1st to Dec 31st) in which they are issued.  So your 2015 membership has expired!!  It is time to renew!!!  Good News ........ Membership fees for 2016 remain at 2015 levels!!!

Membership benefits:

Stay connected to information and resources on invasive species.

Reduced registration rates for the Annual Conference

Be part of AISC with the goal of protecting Alberta from the impacts of invasive species.

Vote at the Annual General Meeting to influence the direction of AISC.  All Board of Directors must be members.

Follow invasive species issues in THE INVADER NEWSLETTER, TWITTER AND FACEBOOK

Memberships are:

Individual:  $31.50 (GST included)

Organizational $105 (GST included)  (added benefit: all employees of that organization ell

Student or Senior (65 plus years) $10.50 (GST included)

It is easy to renew or purchase your membership.  Pick one of 3 ways to purchase your membership

1)      Go to and pay by credit card

2)      Send an email to and request an invoice.

      3)      Complete the membership application FORM and mail it to AISC along with your cheque. (make cheques out to Alberta Invasive Species Council)



PlayCleanGo in Alberta – 2015 Highlights By: Don Hare, Alberta Invasive Species Council, (Alberta)

The Alberta Invasive Species Council (AISC) undertook the challenge of customizing and promoting the PlayCleanGo program to Alberta partners and recreationists in 2015.  Based on the foundation of the program, the AISC collaborated with several ministries within the Government of Alberta and with the Alberta Conservation Association to align PlayCleanGo with Alberta specific provincial mandates, legislations and invasive species issues, and to develop customized materials for use by Alberta partners, including:

  1. A dedicated webpage –\abinvasives - housed on the AISC Website
  2. Trail signs – designed to meet Alberta Government signing standards
  3. Two sizes of posters for use by partners at public offices, field kiosks and field days,
  4. Rack cards for general distribution at field sites, and
  5. Training Module - Introduction to PlayCleanGo program.

 AISC spent considerable time researching and defining the target audience and recreation activities for Alberta recreationists.

The first step was to research / quantify the AB recreationist audience and targets:

·         Alberta’s population is approximately 4.2 million (M) (2015)

·         98.7 % of Albertans participated in leisure or recreation in 2013

·         There were 33.1 million (M) site visits in Alberta (2012), composed of 28.2 M Albertans, 5 M Tourists

 Target Recreation Groups (motorized and non-motorized): (% of Albertans participating)

1.       Hikers, (75-85%-walking, 41% hiking) (1.6-3.5 M) average up to 185 times annually

2.       Dog Walkers –35% of AB households ~ 490K dogs (In Calgary 400 000 licenced dogs)

3.       Bicyclists  (50.7%) 2 M

4.       Campers,  34% of Albertans – 1.4 M (5 M nights campgrounds / trailer parks)

5.       Fishermen – 26% - 250,000 licences   / 800 lakes +streams / (189,000 boats)

6.       Hunters  -105,000 licenced hunters 

7.       Off-highway vehicles (OHV) operators - 149,000 licences

8.       Horse riders- 270, 000 horses in Alberta

 The next step was to partition the target recreation groups into three major categories of recreationists based on how they utilize recreation sites in Alberta:

  1. Designated Trail Recreationist (foot and non-motorized)
  2. Complex Site Recreationist Sites (non-trail foot and non- motorized), and
  3. Multi-use Site and Motorized Recreationist.

The designated trail user recreationist is a person that primarily stays on a designated trail during their entire recreation activity.  Trail users (foot / non-motorized) can include: walking, jogging, running, pet walking, biking and hiking.  This recreationist group represents the largest category of recreationists in Alberta. Extensive AB surveys have shown that up to 75-85% of Albertans participate in these pursuits. Interestingly, very few of the trail users belong to any organized group, and tend to pursue their recreation activity multiple times per year (one survey indicates walkers on average walk 185 times per year). PlayCleanGo introduction to this category and these recreation groups will be directly at use site.

The complex site user recreationist is defined as a person that utilizes a specific site, but generally does not follow a designated trail, rather they will access a specific entry point or staging area, then wander around the chosen site.   Site users can include: hikers, fisherman, hunters, pet owners (off-leash), bikers canoes and non-motorized boaters and horse riders. PlayCleanGo introduction to this category and these recreation groups will be at point of license distribution, equipment retail points, magazines and resource guides, and at site access staging areas.

The multi-use site and motorized user recreationists are the recreation super-users.  This group travels to designated staging areas or permanent sites, and then utilizes a vast array of recreation equipment, including: tents, trailers, RV’s,  boats, OHV (off highway vehicles (quads, UHV, motorcycles, snowmobiles) as well as horses and pack-animals.   While this user group may also use designated trails or travel overland on the recreation sites, the important distinction for this group is that the equipment becomes the focal point for invasive species spread, and specific cleaning protocols and cleaning stations need to be utilized to implement the PlayCleanGo program. PlayCleanGo introduction to this category and these recreation groups will be at point of license distribution, equipment retail points, magazines and resource guides, and at multi-use site access staging areas.

Meetings with Alberta Stakeholder Groups

The AISC received confirmation of funding from several grants for 2015, and in June was able to hire a program coordinator to introduce the PlayCleanGo program into Alberta.  2015 can be best summarized as a design and development year, with intense efforts placed on understanding key target recreation audiences, securing support from key land manager stakeholders, and designing and producing customized materials acceptable to the partnering and sponsoring organizations land and use site managers who will be participating in the PlayCleanGo program.

2016 will be a key implementation year to establish the PlayCleanGo sites, train the partner organizations on the program and concept, and introduce the PlayCleanGo program and concept to the public recreationist groups at the target locations. Extensive consultation will be required to ensure that all the stakeholders’ needs and understandings’ have been aligned.

One of the highlight’s of the 2015 launch year was invasive species joint meeting between the AISC and the Canadian Weed Science Society held Nov 25, 2015 in Edmonton Alberta.

Approximately 140 people attended the Joint meeting including Canadian Weed Science Society members (Academics, Government, Industry, and NGO organizations from across Canada) and AISC members (AISC executive, Provincial Government, NGO and industry people from Alberta).  PlayCleanGo as a program was introduced to this very influential and diverse group of individuals.

PlayCleanGo was also highlighted at the Alberta Government annual in-service training conference, to municipal employees from all 70 Agriculture Service Boards in Alberta.  These employees are responsible for managing the invasive species monitoring and implementing the legislative mandated control programs for Alberta. 

The PlayCleanGo program was also presented to numerous stakeholders, partners, and new potential partners, and the various city, town, municipal counties and use site organizations will continue to discuss the potential for their involvement in 2016.

Another significant effort was the re-introduction of the PlayCleanGo program and concept to key Alberta Provincial ministries and departments.  A new provincial government was elected in Alberta in 2015, and this resulted in very significant reorganization and new combinations of government ministries, including the ministries responsible for management of public lands, environment, forestry, parks and agriculture.  It is anticipated that PlayCleanGo as a concept will be endorsed by the key stakeholder provincial ministries, which should allow implementation on key lands containing recreation use sites managed by these various government ministries.                 

A key PlayCleanGo pilot program was designed and is scheduled to be implemented in spring 2016 at a very key Alberta Conservation Association site located in the town of Canmore.  This critical mountain forested wilderness site is having its trail system and access sites restructured to help protect the wildlife while still allowing recreationists access to the site.  PlayCleanGo will be a part of the designated trail program to help control the spread of invasive species.

 In summary, 2015 was very successful for the design and introduction of the PlayCleanGo program for Alberta collaborators, sponsors and partners that manage recreation lands and sites, and 2016 will be even more exciting as the program gets introduced to the general public recreation site users.




Become A Member

  • Benefit: 1 of 5

    Voting privileges at all membership meetings, including the AGM.

  • Benefit: 2 of 5

    A special member's discount rate to attend the Annual General Meeting and Conference held in April each year.

  • Benefit: 3 of 5

    Receive periodic Member Updates to keep current with developments across the province.

  • Benefit: 4 of 5

    Receive the quarterly e-newsletter, The Invader, and contribute articles.

  • Benefit: 5 of 5

    Contribute expertise and knowledge to working committees that convene from time to time.

Benefit: 2 of 5
A special member's discount rate to attend the Annual General Meeting and Conference held in April each year.

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