Invasive species are the second leading cause for species extinction worldwide, after habitat loss (IUCN, 2014). Preventing the spread of invasive species and reducing new introductions to Ontario’s diverse habitats will support resilient ecosystems and provide a stable foundation for future generations. Preventing harmful introductions before they occur is the most effective means to avoid or minimize risk. Investments in prevention are cost effective, avoiding significant long-term economic, environmental, and social costs. It is critical that we identify potential invaders before they arrive and coordinate public education initiatives to ensure we mitigate any opportunities for introduction and/or spread.
The goal of this project is to build campaigns that address the common barriers to anglers, hunters, boaters, and trail users taking action to prevent the introduction/spread of invasive species as identified by a target audience survey distributed in 2018. Campaigns developed for each audience will focus on the concept that – just because you can’t see them, doesn’t mean they are not there – and will provide each group with the knowledge they need to fulfill our calls to action.