This app is a regional effort to target early detection of invasive species across our state. Working with the University of Georgia's Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health we launched the Great Lakes Early Detection Network (GLEDN).
This free app consists of four sections –
Images - used to help with positive identification of an invasive when in the field. There are multiple images for each species each focusing on a key characteristic.
Info - this tab consists of information on species identification characteristics and for some species how it is impacting the environment.
Map - shows locations where positive sightings have been confirmed across the country. You can look at the locations across the country or zoom in to a particular area to see what has been reported locally.
Report - this section is powered by the EDDMapS system that the Center utilizes to track invasive species. To report an invasive species you will need to register with EDDMapS by creating a username and password. There is no cost to registering – it is merely a means of being able to contact you to follow up on what you reported.
How it works - use your phone to take a photo of the suspect invasive, including the gps location of the sighting and upload it to the EDDMapS system. From there all reports need to be verified before a dot is placed on the map. Some of these listed species will need site visits so the gps location is a critical part of the process. Once verified a dot is placed on the map and we get a much clearer picture of what is where in the state of Ohio.
This free app is the creation of the University of Georgia’s Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health. They will maintain the data that the app collects and update the app as we add things to the list. To download the app, go to http://go.osu.edu/GLEDN.
One thing to keep in mind as you look at what is listed in the app as ‘invasive’ – this is a regional app. The intent is to make it a tool useful to those of us working on this issue across the Great Lakes Region. To that end there are species listed that may not appear to pose a problem in Ohio but are of concern in one of the other states in the region. Download the app and become part of Ohio’s early detection network!