Public session targets invasive invaders

The Invasive Species Council of B.C. will hold a public session Thursday at Vernon's Okanagan College

Starlings are among the invasive species of concern in the Okanagan region.

Starlings are among the invasive species of concern in the Okanagan region.

With quagga mussels inching ever closer to Okanagan lakes and brown marmorated stink bugs threatening fruit crops, local residents are being urged to get informed.

The Invasive Species Council of B.C. will hold a public session on invasive plants and animals Thursday from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at Vernon’s Okanagan College ( room D333).

“This speaker series will provide an opportunity for the public to learn about invasive species in our province and interact with experts in this field,” said Dave Ralph, ISCBC manager.

“By creating awareness around invasive species we have a better chance of managing their spread.”

Jason Webster, a freshwater fisheries consultant from Chara Consulting, will speak about perch, bass, pumpkin seed, carp, mysis shrimp and a few other aquatic invasive species.

Tyrion Miskell, program administrator for the B.C. Grapegrowers Association, will talk on European starlings.

“Miskell’s work for the association includes the starling control program, of which she will discuss the logistics, studies being done at UBCO and anecdotal outcomes,” said Ralph.

And Tara Diebolt, a crew member with the ISBC, will provide information on various aspects of invasive knotweeds such as distribution, identification and physiology.