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Noxious weeds have a destructive impact on Montana's landscape by displacing native plant species, increasing soil erosion, and decreasing wildlife habitat and recreational opportunities. Rangeland, pastureland, cropland, forests, and wildlands cover 92 million acres, 98% of the total land area, in Montana. These lands are vital for agricultural production and protecting the integrity of ecosystems.

The Department's Noxious Weed Programs offer resources and assistance with the management of state- and county-listed noxious weeds.


  • The Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage certification program provides inspections and certification of forage products such as hay, pellets, and straw.


NEWS  

  • Open Positions for the Noxious Weed Management Advisory Committee
    • Livestock Production Representative
    • Herbicide Dealer or Application Representative
    • Biological Research and Control Interests Representative
    • Western County Weed District Representative
    • Agriculture Crop Production Representative
      • Please click on the blue button above to apply. Additional information about the Council and responsibilities please click here.
  • Noxious Weed Trust Fund Hearings, 2021
    • When: March 8-12, 2021
    • Where: Zoom- all virtual
    • Agenda/Schedule- Draft Agenda

  • Petition cycle open for new weeds to list on MT Noxious Weed List    
       

Noxious Weed ID & Education

Montana has 36 state listed noxious weed species that collaboratively affect about 8.2 million acres of Big Sky Country. Both new and continued infestations of these non-native species not only reduce the productivity of cropland and rangeland, infestations of noxious weeds diminish the productivity and biological diversity of ecosystems by negatively impacting wildlife habitat and by affecting the vitality and survival of native species due to competition for space, nutrients and water.

To address noxious weeds, you first need to know how to identify the weeds we are dealing with in Montana. Weeds are most easily identified by their flower color, but sometimes you have to look at other features, including their leaf structure. Visit the Montana Weed Control Association website for information and photos to help you identify Montana's noxious weeds.

 

Noxious Weed
Identification
from MWCA

 

Noxious Weed Videos

The Ravalli County Weed District, Montana Department of Agriculture, and the Montana Weed Control Association sponsored a series of educational noxious weed awareness videos. All videos are available on the MDA YouTube Channel, or use the links below to view specific videos:

 

Noxious Weed Education

The Montana Noxious Weed Education Campaign aims outreach efforts toward educating Montana residents to become proactive in the prevention, eradication and containment of noxious weeds through ecologically based integrated weed management.

 

Access the Official
Montana Noxious Weed
Education Campaign Website

 

Shantell Frame-Martin
Montana Noxious Weed Education Campaign Coordinator

Phone: (406) 883-7375
E-mail: Shantell.Frame@montana.edu
 

 


Statewide Noxious Weed Coordination

The State Noxious Weed Coordinator submits regular Noxious Weed Coordination Reports to the Montana Environmental Quality Council (EQC). Recent reports are available to download below.


Aquatic Noxious Weed Program

Invasive weeds threaten the ecological integrity of aquatic environments in Montana. Eurasian watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed and flowering rush have become established in the state, and there is a high risk of invasion by other non-native aquatic plants.

These plants are highly competitive and affect fisheries, native plants, waterworks, power generation and irrigation. Increased aquatic plant biomass also impacts water quality and recreational resources.

Invasive aquatic plants are transported by hitching a ride on animals, watercraft and recreational vehicles, as well as scuba, fishing and hunting equipment.


Click Here for
the FWP
Aquatic Invasive
Species Website

 

How can you help?

Boating

Before launching and before leaving:

  • Inspect boat, trailer, and equipment.
  • Remove aquatic plants, animals, and mud.
  • Drain water from boat, motor, bilge, live wells, and bait containers.
  • Spray/rinse boats and recreational equipment with high pressure, and/or water above 140 degrees, or let recreational equipment dry for at least five days.
Fishing
  • Clean waders and boots.
  • Drain water from bait containers.
Hunting & Other Outdoor Activity
  • Inspect equipment, decoy lines, anchors, waders and pets.
  • Remove weeds/seeds by washing equipment and brushing or cleaning animals.

Montana Aquatic Noxious Weeds

Other Aquatic Plants of Concern in Montana

Guide to Montana's Freshwater Aquatic Plants

Click on the items below to download the complete guide or parts, meant to help with identification of Montana's freshwater aquatic plants.

Montana Pollutant Discharge Elimination System

State requirements regarding discharge permits have changed. Please visit the Montana Department of Environmental Quality website for information.

Aquatic Pesticide License

Application of aquatic herbicides in Montana requires a special-use license. The Montana Department of Agriculture oversees the licensing and training of aquatic pesticide applicators. Applicators who intend to treat waters with state restricted-use aquatic herbicides (xylene or acrolein) must attend a special aquatic training session and pass an Aquatic Pest Control Exam for initial certification. Training and testing is offered once a year by the Department.

The Department conducts aquatic herbicide applicator recertification training sessions periodically. These are listed with other applicator training opportunities on the Pesticides page.

More Information
About Pesticide Licensing


Biological Weed Control

Biological weed control is a long-term management technique that involves releasing natural enemies to control non-native species. Typically, insects are imported from continents where the noxious weeds originated. Insect predators are carefully tested to be sure they only attack a specific weed and are safe to release in North America.

The most successful method of weed control is an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach. IPM consists of using herbicides, biological weed control agents, grazing, mowing and other mechanical methods.

Acquiring Biological Control Insects

In Montana, several biological control agents have been successfully used to reduce infestations of noxious weeds such as leafy spurge and spotted knapweed. County weed coordinators can provide information on implementing biological control methods, and acquiring insects. See the links below for more information.

Other Contacts for Biological Weed Control

 


Noxious Weed News

National Invasive Species Awareness Week

February 22-26, 2021

National Invasive Species Awareness Week

National Invasive Species Awareness Week is an international event to raise awareness about invasive species, the threat that they pose, and what can be done to prevent their spread.

These simple measures can help us stay informed, attentive, and accountable for preventing the spread of terrestrial and aquatic noxious species:

  1. WATCH FOR NOXIOUS WEEDS. If you spot some, notify your county weed coordinator https://www.mtweed.org/weeds/weed-districts/ or report to EDDMapS West. eddmaps.org/west/
  2. USE CERTIFIED WEED FREE. Make sure to use weed-free forage, hay and mulch. mt.gov/Noxious-Weed-Seed-Free-Forage
  3. PLANT ONLY NON-INVASIVE PLANTS. Keep your garden free of known invasive plants. Many invasive species introductions come from the ornamental trade. mtnativeplants.org/
  4. CLEAN YOUR GEAR. Always wash and dry your boots, bikes, waders, boats, trailers, and off-road vehicles between uses. playcleango.org/
  5. CLEAN.DRAIN.DRY. Aquatic invasive species are often inadvertently spread by boats. Clean. Drain. Dry. every time you use your boat. http://cleandraindry.mt.gov/
  6. DON’T LET IT LOOSE. Dispose of unwanted pets, aquarium plants and water, and live bait the proper way, and not into waterways. Be a responsible pet owner. dontletitloose.com/state/montana/
  7. DON’T MOVE FIREWOOD. Buy it where you burn it or gather it on-site. Firewood can harbor pests and disease, and Montana depends on it

Registration for March Initial Core Pesticide Training Webinar is Now Open

Initial Core Training Webinar on Pesticide Safety, Regulations & Requirements Scheduled for March 16-17, 2021

Registration for March Initial Core Pesticide Training Webinar is Now Open

Registration for the Montana Department of Agriculture's (MDA) Initial Core Training is now available. This webinar course will take place from 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. on March 16-17th and cover pesticide safety, regulations and requirements for certified applicators. The course fee is $75 and those interested in attending should register thorugh MTPlants before March 1st.

This course will provide initial certification training only. Recertification credits are not available through this course. 

Click here to visit the Pesticide Trianing & Recertification webpage.

Please contact Lisa Dorrington, MDA Pesticide Educaiton Specialist, with any quesitons at (406) 444-3732 or LisaDorrington@mt.gov.

Public Meeting Notice: Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council Meeting / NWTF Grant Hearings

March 8 - 12, 2021

Public Meeting Notice: Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council Meeting / NWTF Grant Hearings

The Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council will hold their buisiness meeting and the 2021 Noxious Weed Trust Fund grant hearings virtually March 8 -12, 2021.

A business meeting agenda and grant applicant hearing schedule is attached.

To receive information to join the virtual meeting, please contact Carol Bearden, Noxious Weed Program Specialist, at (406) 444-7880 or cbearden@mt.gov. 

Click here to learn more about the Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council.

Documents to download

Montana Noxious Weed Program
Phone: (406) 444-3144
E-mail: agr@mt.gov 302 N Roberts
Helena, MT 59601


Jasmine Reimer
State Weed Coordinator

Phone: (406) 444-3140
E-mail: JReimer@mt.gov


Carol Bearden
Weed Program Specialist

Phone: (406) 444-7880
E-mail: CBearden@mt.gov


Andrew Lam
Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage Program Coordinator

Phone: (406) 444-7819
E-mail: andrew.lam@mt.gov


Greta Dige
NWTF Grant Coordinator

Phone: (406) 444-7882
E-mail: Greta.Dige@mt.gov


Noxious Weed Program Forms & Files

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