Aquatic plants that are imported from other countries and sold in the UK for use in ponds and gardens can spread into the wild outside of gardens and cause problems for natural ecosystems in the UK threatening some of the most important wildlife sites in the country. Included in the number of threatened sites include many nature reserves of the RSPB.
In response, Defra and the Scottish Government launched a large scale aquatic plant awareness campaign that warns gardeners of the risks of placing non-native plants in their gardens. They also have listed tips on how to minimize the spread of pests into nature.
Non-native plants from ponds that spread into nature reserves is a big issue facing the RSPB and they have embraced pleasure at the new initiative which is titled Be Plant Wise.
The RSPB’s lead specialist on non-native species, Dr. Paul Walton, stated that when people transport plants and animals around the globe and then let them grow into nature areas serious damages to the environment can occur which often leads to extinction of several species.
Walton continued to say that in particular within the borders of the UK aquatic plants are a large damage because they transfer from garden ponds into many nature reserves and once they are established and rooted they can be very difficult if not impossible to remove.
He also stated that warmer climates experience a larger problem with the aquatic plants since they spread much faster and prosper much more easily.