GYCC

5th Annual GYCC Work Days

For immediate release: 7/18/16

Contact: Amy Collett acollett@tcweed.org

Jackson, Wyoming: The Jackson Hole Weed Management Association (JHWMA) will be hosting the Greater Yellowstone Coordinating Committee’s (GYCC) Coordinated Weed Action Days July 19th – 21st, 2016.

We are expecting 85 volunteers from all around the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem to team up for invasive weed control. The project area for this event is the Gros Ventre River corridor encompassing the town of Kelly, the National Elk Refuge, Grand Teton National Park and other public and private lands to the confluence of the Snake River. This project is being organized by Travis Ziehl, the former Assistant Supervisor of Teton County Weed & Pest District (TCWP). The group plans to focus on spotted knapweed, houndstongue, and Dalmatian toadflax as well as other invasive plants, which compete with native vegetation and adversely impact wildlife habitat. TCWP will also offer services to landowners in Kelly on July 20th, in order to get a head start on the invasives species in town.

This event has been approved as a Zero Waste event. Zero Waste is an approach to resource management that conserves, repurposes and recycles what otherwise would be buried or burnt, into valuable assets that contribute to environmental, economic and social wellbeing. The philosophy of Zero Waste is centered on the three R’s, “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.”  TCWP will be using Slow Foods reusable plates and bowls with a wash station from the Snake River Fund for two dinners that will be provided to work day volunteers. We will also provide each volunteer with aluminum water bottle to use throughout the event.

“The GYCC Spray Days events are so unique and the fact that Teton County Weed and Pest is being proactive in making these Zero Waste Green events is wonderful” stated Mac Dukart, Waste Diversion and Outreach Coordinator for Teton County Solid Waste and Recycling.  He continues, “Volunteers will learn more about Teton County’s efforts to reduce landfill bound waste while experiencing a Zero Waste Event firsthand.”

Agencies and organizations that will assist in the project are:

Fremont, Lincoln, Natrona, Park, and Teton County Weed and Pest Districts in Wyoming, Bonneville and Teton County Weed Districts in Idaho, Jackson Hole Fire/EMS, Boreal Property Management, Jackson Hole Property Services, the Bridger-Teton, Custer Galatian, and Shoshone National Forests, the National Elk Refuge, Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks as well as the National Park Service – Northern Rockies Exotic Plant Management Team..

“A lot of really great people are coming together to make progress on some awfully bad plants which negatively transform ecosystem function in wildlife habitat and an important elk migration area.” said Travis Ziehl.

The GYCC was formed to allow representatives from the National Park Service, US Forest Service, the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Bureau of Land Management to pursue opportunities of mutual cooperation and coordination in the management of core federal lands in the Greater Yellowstone Area.

The GYCC Terrestrial Invasive Species subcommittee includes invasive species coordinators from each GYCC unit, county weed and pest staff and other state, county and federal managers who work collaboratively on the creation of common inventories, establishment of cooperative weed management areas, promotion of best management practices, the development of education and information materials as well as integrated management strategies to control and prevent the spread of noxious weeds on a landscape scale.

“On behalf of the GYCC, I would like to thank everyone who will be contributing to the success of this annual event,” said Acting GYCC Executive Coordinator, Bianca Klein.  “Invasive species are everyone’s responsibility no matter where you live, work and recreate.  With private landowners, multiple agencies, and local stakeholders all pitching in to provide on the ground treatment and educational outreach, this event is certain to have lasting beneficial impacts in the region and showcases the importance of transboundary collaboration in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.” 

We would like to thank the GYCC, Teton Conservation District (TCD), Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF), TCWP, and the JHWMA for their contributions in making this event a success. To learn more about the GYCC and the various subcommittees, please visit www.fedgycc.org.