Invasive species are plants, animals, and diseases that are not native to the area in question and have or are likely to cause environmental, human health, or financial harm in Indiana. Many invasive species have entered Indiana or are a threat to arrive in our state.
The Indiana DNR website has multiple links and resources.
The spread of invasive aquatic plants reduces boating, fishing and other aquatic recreation opportunities. Such plants also negatively impact native aquatic plants and reduce property values around lakes and ponds.
Three common aquatic invasives that are found in our lakes, links from the DNR page:
Nitellopsis obtuse (Starry Stonewort)
Myriophyllum spicatum (Eurasian watermilfoil)
Potamogeton crispus (Curly Leaf Pondweed)
Other aquatic invasives, not as widespread in Indiana, but good to be aware of:
Myriophyllum aquaticum (Parrot Feather)
Najas minor (Brittle Naiad)
Cabomba carolinia (Cabomba, Fanwort, Carolina water-shield)
Egaria densa (Brazilian waterweed)
Nymphoides peltate (Yellow floating-heart)
Hydrilla verticillate (Hydrilla)
Pistia stratiotes (Water lettuce)
Hydrocharis morsus-ranae (European frogbit)
Common terrestrial invasives that are found around lakes:
Phalaris arundinacea (Reed Canary Grass)
Phragmites australis (Common reed)
Lythrum salicaria (Purple loosestrife)
Butomus umbellatus (Flowering rush)
Zebra Mussels Dreissena polymorpha
Zebra mussels are originally from Europe and spread rapidly across North America in the 1990s. Aside from being a costly nuisance to humans, zebra mussels may also cause declines in fish populations. By filtering tiny plants, called phytoplankton, out of the water column, zebra mussels diminish the base of the food chain, potentially causing declines in all other aquatic life, including fish.
Zebra mussels can rapidly multiply and are known for clogging drainage and filtration pipes. Besides pipes, they can attach to virtually anything in the water column, including rocks, limbs, piers or even boats.
Zebra mussels: What they are, what they eat, and how they spread (grace.edu)
Kosciusko Water and Woodland Invasive Partnership (kwwip.info)
Indiana Invasive Species Council (purdue.edu)
Procambarus clarkii (Red Swamp Crayfish)
Faxonius rusticus (Rusty Crayfish)
Hypophthalmichthys molitrix (Silver Carp)