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MSU Co-op Fights Against Invasive Species
Eyes on the Forest Program


This is one of the tags that volunteers can attach to a tree they are monitoring. The tags are safely tied to a tree, rather than nailed. Out of the 100 trees that have been tagged since 2015, none are showing signs of invasive pest intrusion, according to Julie Crick, the program's extension educator.

In an attempt to prevent damage from invasive pests, the cooperative extension at Michigan State University (MSU) created the Eyes on the Forest program in 2015.

Startup funding for the program was provided by the Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program, a program that aims to allocate $3.6 million to combat invasive species throughout this year (2018).

The Eyes on the Forest program aims to "link research, outreach and communication activities through MSU's Department of Entomology and MSU Extension." This statewide effort specifically targets three major potential invaders: the Asian Longhorned Beetle, Hemlock Wooly Adelgid and Thousand Cankers Disease.

In addition to their primary focus on the three pests, the program's website also supplies informational links on other invasives that either are posing or could pose threats to the state.

Julie Crick, the program's extension educator, states that the primary goal of the program is "to encourage people to monitor the health of the trees and the forest around them. The main purpose was to make people aware of invasive species that we don't have in Michigan yet, so that we could instill early detection and rapid response." In short, "to be proactive rather than reactive."

Since its inception, Eyes on the Forest has accumulated around 200 volunteers who have adopted and closely monitored the health of 100 trees in Michigan state.

The Eyes on the Forest campaign is actively seeking volunteers who live in the state of Michigan and want to protect its natural forests from invasive pests.

To get involved visit the Michigan State University's Eyes on the Forest webpage HERE ( or contact Julie Crick by email,, or by phone, 989-390-0317.

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October 16, 2019, 12:53 am PDT

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