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Water and Land Invasive Species Advisory Board

Suffolk County Protecting Native Species

Water and Land Invasive Species Advisory Board

Invasive species have been recognized as a serious threat to native plants and animals as well as the environment that sustain the resources for the native species to survive. Once our local natural resources are endangered by invasive species, the local economy is also threatened as native species are displaced and even locally vanished by highly competitive invasive species. The Suffolk County Department of Economic Development and Planning recognizes this issue and supports and plays an active part on several programs and projects that aim to protect our waters and native environment. As a member of the Suffolk County Invasive Species Advisory Board, the Department is engaged in finding ways to reduce and control invasive species which represent a serious problem affecting our environment and water bodies.

Suffolk County continues to be a leader in policies and initiatives aiming for the control of invasive species -- the need to keep waters open for fishing, boating and swimming, our lands walkable, and our natural areas rich in native biodiversity. Through resolution 985-2005, the County convened the Water and Land Invasives Control Task Force in an effort to define the critical components needed for an effective county-wide invasives program. A set of strategies to reduce and manage invasive plants and animals and their harmful impacts, to prevent new invasions through early detection and rapid response measures, and to promote public education on issues related to invasive species were developed.

Suffolk County Local Law No. 22-2007, Adopted 6-26-2007 (Ch. 278A, Art. II, of the 1985 Code), prohibits the sale, introduction and propagation of invasive plants and provides a list of 63 species that are or will be banned in Suffolk County. For more information on the law and its enforcement, and how you can collaborate in the enforcement of this law, please contact the Department of Consumer Affairs website:

Suffolk County proudly became the first county in New York State to adopt a “do-not-sell list”, prohibiting the sale of 63 invasive plant species in 2007. Pursuant to the enacting legislation, the Suffolk County Water and Land Invasives Advisory Board developed annual recommendations for revisions to the “do not sell list.” The Advisory Board submits its recommendations to the Suffolk County Department of Economic Development and Planning, and its Divisions of Planning and Environment, and Water Quality Improvement, and the Suffolk County Legislature.

The LIISMA website has more information on local invasives legislation and the scientific ranking system developed to determine analytically whether a species is highly invasive (see

Overview of the Water and Land Invasives Advisory Board

The Suffolk County Water and Land Invasives Advisory Board was created in 2009 to implement the county-wide invasives program (i.e, Task Force Report recommendations). The Board is composed of members from different County agencies and departments, the Legislature, industry and environmental groups and works together with The Nature Conservancy, Long Island Invasive Species Management Area (LIISMA), the Long Island Nursery & Landscape Association, Long Island Farm Bureau, Cornell Cooperative Extension, Soil & Water Conservation District, Suffolk County Department of Parks, Nassau County Department of Parks, Nassau County Department of Public Works, New York City Department of Parks, US Fish & Wildlife Service, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, LI Botanical Society, and many individual botanists and field scientists. The Board is well represented by its members’ interests, training and knowledge to develop and implement a vision for better action and coordination for invasive species management.

In 2007, Suffolk and Nassau Counties became the first Counties in New York State to take a key step in slowing the spread of invasive species by outlawing the sale, transport, distribution, and propagation of 63 invasive plant species. As part of a long-term invasive species management plan, this law is a major move in the fight against the spread of these species into our lands and waters. The ban on 56 of these species became effective January 1, 2009, but of these, only 9 are widely commercially sold (Table 1). The ban includes each plant’s cultivars.

Table 1. Commercially-sold Species on the “Do Not Sell” list

Which went into effect in 2009
Ampelopsis brevipedunculata Porcelain-berry
Eleagnus umbellata Autumn olive
Lespedeza cuneata Chinese lespedeza
Ligustrum obtusifolium Border privet
Lythrum salicaria Purple loosestrife
Ranunculus ficaria Lesser celandine
Rhamnus cathartica Common buckthorn
Rosa multiflora Multiflora rose
Rubus phoenicolasias Maxim. Wineberry

For More Information:

Suffolk County Resolution 1108-2005, Adopting Local Law To Prevent The Spread of Invasive Non-Native Aquatic Plants and Animals:

Suffolk County Resolution 594-2011 containing the Do-Not Sell List:

Local Law, Chapter 446 Environmental Protection, Adopted 6-26-2007 by L.L. No. 22-2007 (Ch. 278A, Art. II, of the 1985 Code):

Attachments to the Local Law, Chapter 446 Environmental Protection, see attachment 2 for the Do Not Sell List:

Long Island Invasive Species Management Area:

Species’ invasiveness assessments can be found at

Do-Not Sell List

Management List

For more information about the do-not-sell list, invasive plants, non-invasive alternative plants, and the program in general, please contact: and/or

We Need Your Help: You need be part of this effort through your gardening habits, by planting ornamental native plants over invasive species. There are also many non-native, NON-invasive ornamental plants that make great selections.

What is an invasive species? An invasive species is legally defined as an organism that is not native to the ecosystem under consideration AND whose introduction causes or is likely to cause harm to the environment, economy, and/or human health.

The National Invasive Species Council ( defines an invasive species as “a species that is non-native to the ecosystem under consideration and whose introduction causes or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health.” For more information follow this link:

How do these species harm the environment? Invasive plants invade natural ecosystems and displace the native flora. This in turn affects wildlife and other species which may be dependent upon the local flora for food or habitat. By replacing the native plants, invasive species disrupt natural ecosystem processes such as hydrology (movement of water), nutrient cycling, wildfire regime, natural succession, and soil conservation. This leads to ecological instability and decreased biodiversity.

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County has published 2 brochures that provide you with information on invasive plants and Native-Friendly Plants - Alternatives to Ornamental Invasive Plants (

To download a brochure on frequently asked questions relating to invasive plants on Long Island:

To download the list of alternatives to ornamental invasive plants:

Useful Links:

General Invasive Info
The National Invasive Species Council (NISC)
The Nature Conservancy: Six Easy Ways You Can Prevent Invasive Species:
Long Island Invasive Species Management Area
Invasive Plant Atlas of New England
Federal Interagency Committee for the Management of Noxious and Exotic weeds
New York Invasive Species Research Institute
NYSDEC – Nuisance & Invasive Species
Invasive Exotic Plant Management Tutorial for Natural Lands Managers
Invasive Plant Council of New YorkState
National Invasive Species Information Center
North American Weed Management Association (NAWMA)
USDOT – Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
Institute for Biological Invasions
US Forest Service – Invasive Species Program
US Forest Service – Invasive Species Program
Invasive Species Information Node
Brooklyn Botanic Garden
Species ID, Images & Management Info (Plants)
MA Department of Conservation & Recreation – Lakes & Ponds Program
Pennsylvania Field Guide – Common Invasive Plants in Riparian Areas
The Pennsylvania Flora Project Invasive Plant Fact Sheets
Plant Conservation Alliance’s Alien Plant Working Group – Fact Sheets
UConn Invasive Plant Management Guide
NRCS – CT – Invasive Species ID sheets
USDA Plants Database
iMap Invasives
Pests & Pathogens
NYS Dept. of Ag & Markets – Cooperative Agricultural Pest Survey (CAPS)
MA Introduced Pests Outreach Project
MD Invasive Species Council
US Forest Service – Forest Health Protection
Forest Pests of the Adirondack Forests
New York Flora Atlas – NY Flora Association
Aquatic Nuisance Species
USGS Non-indigenous Aquatic Species Program
Northeast Aquatic Nuisance Species Panel
MIT Sea Grant Center for Coastal Resources
Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force
University of Florida – Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants
Other Species
Great Lakes Worm Watch
Native Alternatives – Native Gardening
New England Wildflower Society
CT Botanical Society – Gardening with Native Plants
Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center
University of Vermont Extension – Native Perennials Add Color to the Flower Garden
US Forest Service Native Alternatives
Other PRISMs
Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program (APIPP)
National Pesticide Information Center
Economic Impacts of Invasives
Invasive Species Legislation
Connecticut – CT Invasive Plant Working Group
Invasive Species Information Node – State lists
USDA – Laws and Regulations
Federal Noxious Weed List

Suffolk County Government

H. Lee Dennison Bldg

100 Veterans Memorial Hwy
P.O. Box 6100
Hauppauge, NY 11788

Riverhead County Center

County Road 51
Riverhead, NY 11901