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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.

NEWS

  • FY20 Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Opportunities Posted! Visit fundingmt.org to apply.
  • Biennial Report Due: November 1st. See instructions below under Forms & Files.
  • Medusahead found in Gallatin Co. fairgrounds!!
  • Ventenata added to the State Noxious Weed List. See updated list HERE.
  • Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council meeting January 13, 2020.
    • Great Falls, Heritage Inn
    • 10 am - 2 pm
    • Agenda- TBD

Noxious Weed ID & Education

Montana has 35 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) 328-4785
E-mail: Shantell.Frame@montana.edu
15 N. Woodard
Absarokee, MT 59001

 


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

Ventenata Added to Montana Noxious Weed List

Learn to identify ventenata in the field

Ventenata Added to Montana Noxious Weed List

Helena, Mont. – The Montana Department of Agriculture has updated its noxious weed list to include ventenata (Ventenata dubia). The Noxious Weed Listing Workgroup recommended adding ventenata to the Priority 2A list at its meeting on March 21, 2019. The amendment was adopted on June 21st, 2019. Priority 2A weeds are common in isolated areas in the State and require eradication or containment where less abundant. Management can be prioritized by the local weed districts.

Administrative Rules of MT: Public Hearing

State Noxious Weed List (Ventenata): May 22, 2019 at 9:00 AM

Click to view the Montana Administrative Register, Issue No. 8, published on April 26, 2019.  The Department of Agriculture's Notice of Public Hearing on Proposed Amendment of the State Noxious Weed List is published on pages 413 and 414.

A public hearing will be held on May 22, 2019 at the Department of Agriculture (302 N. Roberts, Helena, MT) at 9:00 a.m.  Concerned persons may submit their data, views, or agruments either orally or in writing at the hearing, by email (agr@mt.gov), phone (406-444-3144), or mail (PO Box 200201, Helena, MT 59620-0201).

 

Documents to download

MDA Announces Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Recipients

MDA Announces Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Recipients

Helena, Mont. - The Montana Department of Agriculture and Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council has awarded over $1.79 million for the development and implementation of noxious weed management programs across Montana. The grants, which were awarded in March, assist counties, conservation districts, local communities, tribes, researchers and educators in efforts to combat noxious weeds in Montana. 

58 local cooperative projects were funded at a total of $1,247,871 or 70% of all dollars awarded. Twelve research projects were funded at $309,380 and 11 educational projects were awarded $234,591. Combined research and educational projects were awarded a total of $543,971 or 30% of all funding available.

Montana Noxious Weed Program
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

 

Rory Ruffner
Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage Program Coordinator

Phone: (406) 444-7819
E-mail: Rory.ruffner@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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