Oregon charted a steady course in battling invasive species last year, earning it a B+ rating by the state's Invasive Species Council, which keeps an eye on how well weed fighters are doing.
The state efforts against invasive species were evaluated on five parameters for the 2011 score:
How well it kept 100 of the worst invaders from the state.
How it did in maintaining a reporting system of efforts
Its outreach program
The statewide action plan thoroughness
How Oregon did administering the council's trust account
"We can't let our guard down in the fight against invasive species," says Rick Boatner, council chairman. "Every new litter of feral swine, every introduction of an aquatic invasive species via ballast water and every noxious weed that becomes established is a threat to Oregon's economy and natural resources.
"We must be vigilant to protect Oregon's water quality and native fish and wildlife habitat to maintain the quality of life Oregonian's cherish."
The B+ is a better mark than the state received in 2010, when the council gave Oregon a B- because two plants and one disease on the 100 Worst list became established in the Beaver State.
Oregon had lost the battle against Sudden Oak Disease because of a lack of funding, In that year, two species of hawkweed also became established in Oregon, adding to the council's lower score.
What helped bring the score up last year was an A- mark for Oregon's establishment website hotline for users to report potential invasive species finds throughout the state. The website, www.oregoninvasivehotline.org, poste 190 reports last year.
The Oregon Department of Agriculture also provides a 1-866-INVADER hotline for public reports on suspected invasives. The council last year contracted with the Oregon Biodiversity Information Center to manage a statewide iMapInvasives database.