Scottish Canals is proud to be leading the development of innovative management techniques to control the spread of a pernicious non-native invasive amphibious plant – New Zealand Pigmyweed, found growing in and around the Caledonian Canal at Inverness.
New Zealand Pigmyweed (Crassula helmsii), is an ‘alien’ plant that creates a significant problem for the native biodiversity of the canal – disrupting the eco-systems, and creating concern surrounding navigation and clogged waterways. The plant is able to spread through the smallest fragments – raising further concern for other water bodies in Scotland.
The project, supported by the CAN DO Innovation Challenge, will work to develop new management techniques to control the spread of New Zealand Pigmyweed on the estate – with outlook of working towards eradicating the invasive species all together. Recruiting four expert teams of Scotland based innovators to tackle the problem, the issue is in the hands of specialists from the marine engineering and environmental sectors from AECOM, Augmentias, ECUS, and the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology.
To assist in the eradication of this harmful plant, we ask that you help to stop the spread by following three simple steps:
CHECK your equipment, boat, and clothing after exiting the water for mud, anumals, or plant materials. Remove anything you do find and leave it at the site.
CLEAN everything thoroughly as soon as you can – paying attention to areas that are damp or hard to access. Hot water, if accessible, is ideal.
DRY everything for as long as you can before using in a body of water elsewhere, as some invasive species can survive for over two weeks in damp conditions.
The first phase of the project will run until Spring 2020 – with updates available on our website, and our social channels.
You can find out more about the CAN DO Innovation Challenge Fund – a partnership between Scottish Enterprise, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Scottish Government, and the Scottish Funding Council, here.