External threats can have a negative affect on natural resources. These effects include disruption and displacement of native species with aggressive, exotic species that have a competitive advantage or do not have natural controls.
Asiatic honeysuckle, buckthorn, garlic mustard, multiflora rose and purple loosestrife are species that have been identified in and around Effigy Mounds National Monument. The zebra mussel has been found in the Mississippi River and it appears that it is a matter of time before the river and its tributaries are choked with this species.
As the exotic species take over, they shade out or replace native species that have evolved in this location for thousands of years. These aggressive species supplant native vegetation and replace it with an exotic monoculture that does not supply food or cover for local fauna. What impact this will have on the ecosystem and the flora and fauna of Effigy Mounds can only be guessed.
An integrated pest management program will identify and locate infestations of exotic species, determine their impact on the resource and develop strategies that will prevent, eliminate or control the occurrence of undesirable species.
In recent years Effigy Mounds has seen some success in the war against garlic mustard.
Last updated: April 10, 2015