Columbia Shuswap Invasive Species Society turns 10

2023 CSISS Board and Staff: front row staff include Robyn Hooper (ED), Marlee Verleih (Program Assistant), Jess Booth (Outreach Coordinator), Katie Dzyngel (Program Assistant), Laura Gaster (Operations Manager), Nolan Novotny (Field Technician). Back row Board members include: Chris Cochran (Chair), Mike Manson, Hamish Kassa, Erin Vieira, Peter Tarleton (Vice Chair), Jeromy Schuetze, Adam Croxall, Laurel Corrigan, John Braisher. Not pictured: Diane Millar, Chris Gill. Photo submitted

The Columbia Shuswap Invasive Species Society celebrated its 10th anniversary in mid-June. The Columbia Shuswap Invasive Species Society (CSISS) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention, management, and reduction of invasive species on the Columbia Shuswap Regional District.

“This significant milestone marks a decade of dedicated efforts to protect ecosystems in the region from threats posed by invasive species,” the society said in a statement. CSISS was established in 2013 and is part of a network of 13 regional invasive species groups in the province. The groups work in cooperation with the Invasive Species Council of BC. 

The society held its milestone celebration in June, which featured a presentation on invasive species by CSISS technician Nolan Novotny, and a nature walk – which included a stop at an interactive boot brush station installed on the Revelstoke Greenbelt – led by outreach coordinator Jess Both. In its statement, CSISS said the celebration was an “opportunity to honour the contributions and commitments of past and current staff and board members, key partners, funders and volunteers.” Awards were presented to recognize the contributions of individuals who have played a pivotal role in the society’s success over the past decade.

“Since its inception, CSISS has made progress in tackling invasive species and their impact on our natural environment. Through collaboration, education, and on-the-ground initiatives, we have been working to preserve the delicate balance of our local ecosystems. Our achievements are the product of the dedication of our staff, board members, and the support of the community and funders.”

The society has created priority invasive plant lists, which can be found on its website High priority invasive plants identified in Revelstoke include Bighead knapweed, giant hogweed, nodding thistle, plumeless thistle, poison hemlock, scotch thistle, wood sage, yellow flag iris, and bur chervil among others.

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