Thursday, June 19, 2008

Invasive Honeysuckle versus the Whip Poor Will

This plant has overspread eastern Missouri during the past 10-15 years. Used a chainsaw to cut it down a year ago April (2007), and it is back and bigger than ever choking out all native bushes and covering partly sunny areas with complete shade; thereby causing native part sun loving wildflowers to die off.

The Japanese honeysuckle is spreading across Missouri destroying the understory of oak-hickory, pine forests; changing the natural environment. For instance,  the Whip-poor-will (Caprimulgus vociferus) of favorite birds in in decline in Missouri largely due to invasive honeysuckle. Whip-poor-will's nest on leafy forest floors; clear of understory. They are quickly disappearing across eastern Missouri; and headed west. He lives up to his latin name "vociferous" as anyone who has been outside at night in the summer in the Ozark hills knows. John Burroughs once counted 1007 whip-poor-WILL calls, then a one minute resting period then another 790.

For more information on protection and damage;

No comments: