City Of Abbotsford  
Water - Stoney Creek

Invasive Species

Invasive Plants Background

Invasive plants are non-native plants that were introduced without their natural insect predators and plant pathogens that help to keep them under control in their native habitats.

Negative effects of invasive plants:

  • Spread aggressively and take over the natural environment.
  • Push out native plants, including endangered species, and destroy habitat for fish, birds and other wildlife.
  • Cause erosion and silt problems in creeks and impact aquatic creatures.
  • Are expensive to control and eradicate.
  • Some, like Giant Hogweed, are dangerous to human health.

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Invasive Plants in Abbotsford

Some invasive plants have been designated as a noxious weed under the Weed Control Regulation of the BC Weed Control Act. This Act imposes a duty on all land occupiers to control designated noxious weeds to protect our natural resources and industry from the negative impacts of noxious weeds. Residents are also required to control noxious weeds as per the City's Good Neighbour Bylaw No. 1256-2003.

City departments actively control noxious weeds found on public lands. Additionally, the City relies on the Fraser Valley Regional District Noxious Weed Program to target the following noxious weeds: Tansy Ragwort, Wild Chervil, Giant Hogweed and Japanese Knotweed. 

The City is asking for the community's help to identify noxious weeds in Abbotsford and to work towards their containment and potentially their elimination. Please report all noxious weeds in Abbotsford, by using the Online Noxious Weeds Reporting Form or by contacting a City of Abbotsford Environmental Coordinator by email or 604-864-5510.

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Japanese Knotweed & Giant Hogweed

Japanese Knotweed and Giant Hogweed are two species of invasive plants that have recently been designated as noxious weeds and are particularly aggressive.

Japanese Knotweed along with the other three Knotweed species (Bohemian, Giant and Himalayan) has the ability to destabilize building foundations and destroy sewage and water main infrastructure. Knotweed can colonize large areas with just a small portion of its root. Growing up to three metres (10 feet) high in a single growing season, Knotweed can out-compete native vegetation. Tips on how to remove and dispose of Knotweeds can be found on the Knotweeds T.I.P.S. and Knotweed Best Management Practices.

Giant Hogweed poses a serious threat to human health and the environment. The clear sap found in its stem and hairs can result in severe burns and blistering. Children have used the large, hollow stems as pea shooters and telescopes resulting in burns to the mouth and/or eyes. If sap enters the eyes, it can cause temporary or permanent blindness. It is best to let a professional remove this plant, but if you are going to remove the plant yourself, always wear protective, waterproof clothing, gloves and safety goggles and follow Work Safe BC instructions on their safety bulletin. View the Giant Hogweed Fact Sheet and Giant Hogweed Best Management Practices for more information on proper identification, removal and disposal.

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Other Invasive Species

There are many other invasive species that threaten Abbotsford’s economy and natural environment. These include, but are not limited to, the Spotted Wing Drosophila and the Bullfrog. While sightings have not been reported, there are other invasive species that we must be on the lookout for such as the European Fire Ant.

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