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Hello list.

Last week I drove US 63 from Licking to Columbia.  Between Rolla and 
Columbia ( I really don't remember where) it appears that someone 
(MODOT????) has been spraying the Teasel; in one stretch of the highway they 
are brown and failing to blossom.  If it is MODOT, I am proud of them for 
taking action.  They need to rapidly expand their efforts!  If it is a 
private landowner, he/she has taken the invasive species issue seriously.

However, between Licking and Jeff City there are some of the most dense 
stands of Sericea lespedeza that I have ever seen, and they are very 
healthy.  I worry more about this stuff than the teasel.

Does anyone know if MODOT has begun spraying roadsides for invasive species?


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Dianne & Steve Kinder" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Monday, July 24, 2006 5:09 PM
Subject: Grassland Birds, and Teasel


I have been doing a Federal BBS route in North Misssori for the last few 
years. I have also been doing 3 - 4 pairs of Grassland BBS routes for MDC 
and The Grassland Coalition. One of these is in NE Mo. and the others in the 
SW part of the State. What has really been an interesting part of this for 
me has been seeing the differences in the birds found in these areas. Most 
noticable has been the much higher number of House Wrens found in the North 
compared to down South. I had not realized there was that much difference. 
On the surveys run up North at least one HOWR can be found at almost every 
Farmstead, old homesite, stream crossing, or any brushy area. Usually have 
AM. Robins at these places too.Very few of either are found on the surveys 
in the SW part. A couple other species that I more expected would be more 
common up North are Grey Catbirds and Warbling Vireos. Larry Lade helped me 
on some of the routes in the SW and noticed too that we were not seeing 
nearly as many
 Orioles of either species as we do up here. I have been surprised that 
there also fewer Eastern Kingbirds than I see farther North. Song Sparrows 
too are much more numerous in North Missouri. Bobolinks, Upland Sandpipers, 
and Sedge Wrens are more expected in North Mo. although this year I found 
few of these on my routes.
     I do find more Mockingbirds, Scissortails, and Blue Grosbeaks in SW Mo. 
although these are now increasing in North Mo. Larger numbers of Eastern 
Meadowlarks, Red-winged Blackbirds, and Starlings are found on some of the 
stops in SW Mo. usually around recently harvested Wheatfields which there 
are more of there. This could account to some degree fewer numbers of other 
species.
    Although these are Grassland routes they do go through the edge of some 
brushy and woody habitats. More numerous in the South are Carolina Wren, 
[also increasing in the North] , and Eastern Towhees.
    Seems like numbers of other species such as Grasshopper and Henslow's 
Sparrows are more dependent on quality of local habitat than on regional 
difference.
      Anyway these have been my observations on the routes I do. I would be 
interested in others comments and experiences.

  While on the subject of Grasslands, something that I have not heard much 
about is other invasive exotic species other than Fescue. I have noticed 
lately an alarming number of Teasel plants along roadways in this part of 
the State. There are some fairly dense stands now along 36 hyw. They are 
tall now with the seedheads and very noticable right now. I believe they are 
listed as a noxious plant and legally landowners are required to destroy 
them. Ironically with all the mowing dosen't look like MODOT or anyone else 
is targeting this nuisance. If allowed to go to seed this problem spreads 
rapidly. Many years ago I gathered some of the unusual seedheads to use in a 
Fall arrangement. Big Mistake! I later threw them out in the backyard 
compost pile. The next few years I had little Teasel plants coming up all 
over that part of the yard. I found they were very difficult to get rid of 
even in that small area. Think they could have big impact on our grasslands 
if not better
 controled.

  Steve Kinder
   Chillicothe, Livingston Co.
   [log in to unmask]

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