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Invasive Species in Amherst State Park

Lonicrea spp. (species unknown) - Honeysuckle

Close up Photo

photo by  WNY PRISM

June 5, 2015

photo by  WNY PRISM

June 5, 2015

Infestation Photo

photo by  WNY PRISM

June 5, 2015

    Bush honeysuckles were found along woodland edges and trails. This shrub produce leaves early in the year allowing them to outcompete and shade-out native shrubs and trees. Songbirds that nest in honeysuckle tend to nest earlier in the year and lower to the ground, making them more vulnerable to predation. In addition, birds may eat honeysuckle berries, but they do not contain as many nutrients as native plants. The higher fat content of native fruit-bearing shrubs is necessary for birds to store enough energy in order to complete their migration. 


    As a popular birding location, it would be valuable for Amherst State park to educate the public about the negative impacts of honeysuckle and to manage its spread. Smaller shrubs can be pulled but larger shrubs can be treated with herbicides using cut-stump or foliar applications.