Massachusetts Invasive Plant Advisory Group

Massachusetts Invasive Plant Advisory Group (MIPAG)


About the group

The Massachusetts Invasive Plant Advisory Group [MIPAG] is a voluntary collaborative representing organizations and professionals concerned with the conservation of the Massachusetts landscape. The group began in early 1995 as an outgrowth of an ad-hoc group, the Massachusetts Native Plant Advisory Committee (now known as the Massachusetts Native Plant Committee). MIPAG was charged by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs to provide recommendations to the Commonwealth regarding which plants are invasive and what steps should be taken to manage these species.


MIPAG members represent research institutions, non-profit organizations, the green industry, and state and federal agencies. Because of this diversity of support, the findings and recommendations of the group will encourage a cooperative effort among every organization, agency, and citizen concerned with the threat to the Commonwealth of invasive plants.

The group's work

MIPAG defines invasive plants as "non-native species that have spread into native or minimally managed plant systems in Massachusetts, causing economic or environmental harm by developing self-sustaining populations and becoming dominant and/or disruptive to those systems." MIPAG adopted this definition and a set of biologically-based criteria upon which to objectively evaluate plants suspected to be invasive in the state. Existing field and historical data about these species was gathered to assess which are currently invasive in Massachusetts and which have the potential to become problematic. All important decisions by MIPAG concerning invasiveness have been passed by a two-thirds vote of its members. A list of new species determined by MIPAG to be invasive, likely invasive, or potentially invasive, is presented to the Mass. Dept. of Agricultural Resources on an annual basis and recommended for placement on the state's Prohibited Plant List.


MIPAG has also published its strategic recommendations to prevent, control and, where possible, eradicate invasive plant species in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. These recommendations complement efforts at both the regional and national levels to establish an early detection and rapid response system for invasive plants. They acknowledge that to meaningfully address the environmental, cultural and economic impacts of invasive plant species in Massachusetts will require the commitment and collaboration of diverse groups, working in partnership at appropriate scales, to confront this problem that affects us all. The recommendations are published in Strategic Recommendations for Managing Invasive Plants in Massachusetts.


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Funding and coordination

Research undertaken by the group was funded by the Massachusetts Nursery and Landscape Association, the Horticultural Research Institute, The Nature Conservancy, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs, and the Massachusetts Department of Fish and Game's Division of Fisheries and Wildlife. Coordination for the group is provided by the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge with financial assistance from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.


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Vice Chairperson:
George Batchelor


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