Midwestern Early Detection Plant Species

A regional early detection species is one that is either a) not yet present in the Midwest, but is prevalent and spreading in neighboring regions, or b) present in the Midwest in relatively small or isolated populations with high risk of further spread. We encourage people who spend a lot of time outdoors to become familiar with early detection species and to report sightings using tools like EDDMapS and/or directly to local natural resources authorities. If land managers are made aware of new instances of these species soon after they arrive, they can take action to control and hopefully eradicate these populations before they become large in size. 

In preparation for the Upper Midwest Invasive Species Conference 2020, MIPN staff worked with colleagues at Minnesota Department of Agriculture, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and Johnson County, Iowa (Chris Henze - also on MIPN's Board of Directors) to survey natural resource practitioners in surrounding states about the terrestrial invasive plant species they are perceive as relatively new and rapidly spreading. The results are summarized in an infographic below (full size available here). The full survey species list is available here



MIPN has developed two "Keep a Lookout" fliers to acquaint the public with 32 early detection plant species, both terrestrial plants (pdf) and aquatics (pdf). State agencies and/or invasive plant councils often maintain lists of state-specific priority early detection species, which are linked below. We have also compiled some species-specific resources to help with identification and control recommendations for early detection species. Do you have a resource related to an early detection species that you'd like us to share? Please contact us.

State Early Detection Resources and Priority Lists

Defining early detection species on a regional level can be tricky. It is also valuable for people to know what species are new and spreading in their neck of the woods. State agencies and invasive plant councils are a great resource, as are any local CWMAs. Here are some state-wide resources that we have identified:

  • Indiana Invasive Species Council - New Invasive Plants to Watch For, 2016 (pdf)
  • Michigan Department of Natural Resources - Watch List, 2017 (pdf)
  • Minnesota Departments of Natural Resources and Agriculture - Keep a Lookout, 2017 (pdf)
  • Missouri Invasive Plants Task Force - Emerging Invasive Plant Species in Missouri (pdf)
  • Ohio Department of Natural Resources - Watch List, 2000 (pdf)
  • Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources - NR-40 List, 2015 (pdf)
    • "Prohibited" and "Prohibited/Restricted" plants can be considered early detection species in WI



Species Specific Resources


(listed by habitat type and alphabetically by Latin name)

Terrestrial Species

Aquatic Species