Print Page

News.bytesNews.bytes Extra, issue 348

Ohio students attack Scotch thistle in northeastern California

A group  of college students from Ohio came to the assistance of the BLM's Surprise Field Office in northeast California recently, helping to eradicate a significant stand of Scotch thistle, an aggressive noxious weed.

The students, four from the University of Cincinnati and one from Ursuline College in Cleveland, removed a stand of 75 plants near the community of Fort Bidwell.  Elimination of the stand reduced the chance that the weed would spread further onto public and private lands, reducing productivity and value for wildlife.

Above, student volunteers attack a stand of Scotch thistle, leaving vanquished plants behind them.

Lynette Sullivan, noxious weed technician for the Surprise Field Office, turned to the volunteers for help when she discovered the thistle plants, some over six feet tall, in a field near Fort Bidwell.  The students, part of an international cultural exchange program called World Wide Opportunities On Organic Farms (WWOOF), were in northeast California to work on a project at Locovore Farms in Fort Bidwell.

"Working with the 'WWOOFers' was a great opportunity to eliminate a noxious weed stand and to educate people about the need to combat invasive weeds," Sullivan said.  "They enjoyed the project, too!  The students said a day vanquishing Scotch thistle was a unique and satisfying experience.  They were proud to have been involved in a larger nationwide effort to stop the spread of this invasive weed.  They left the project ready to share their new knowledge about the importance of controlling invasive and noxious weeds."

- J. Fontana, 9/08

BLM-California News.bytes, issue 348

Last updated: 09-10-2008