Invasive Plant Risk Assessment for Select New Hampshire Transportation Corridors

Focus Area

Invasive Species/Vegetation Management


Natural Resources




Under $99k


1-2 years

Research Idea Scope

TERI Database Administrator Notes.  Not recommended at present time by 2009 Natural Systems Subcommittee.

Transportation corridors are a potential vector for the spread of invasive plant species throughout New Hampshire.  This phenomenon is a concern not only for the New Hampshire Department of Transportation (NHDOT), but also for destinations such state and federal parklands.  NHDOT is developing a program for control of common invasive plant species (e.g., Polygonum cuspidatum, Lythrum salicaria).  In addition, NHDOT has developed Best Management Practices to limit the spread of invasive plants caused by maintenance and construction activities.  NHDOT’s goal is to prevent its activities from spreading invasive plants to new sites.  NHDOT is now positioned to assess the potential risk of the spread invasive plants via transportation corridors to non-NHDOT destinations such as state and federal parklands.  No systematic synopsis of the distribution and expansion of invasive plants along transportation corridors currently exists.  This information is a necessary prelude to development of a comprehensive management strategy. The objectives of this project are to determine the distribution of invasive plants along select transportation corridors, and perform an initial risk assessment for the spread of said plants to critical and sensitive receptor sites.  NHDOT, working with the NH Natural Heritage Bureau, will achieve these objectives by: 1) Compiling existing data about invasive species along select NH transportation corridors; 2) Conducting field surveys to verify compiled data and collect new data; 3) Reviewing historic records to assess the actual spread of invasive species in NH; 4) Reviewing literature assessments of the potential for, and rate of , the spread of invasive species; and 5) Performing a risk assessment of the potential for the spread of invasive species in NH to critical and sensitive receptor sites.

Urgency and Payoff

The primary output of this project is a summary report.  The outcomes of the project include, but are not limited to: 1) better invasive plant species information available to local, state, and federal partners, and nongovernmental organizations; 2) a benchmark for future assessments of the spread and management of invasive plant species; and 3) improved targeting of management efforts.

Suggested By

Christine Perron, NH Department of Transportation