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Weed fighters going to backcountry

May 12, 2017 - By Daniel Bendtsen, Staff Writer

Fremont County Weed and Pest is planning to subcontract a backcountry trip deep into the Shoshone National Forest in late summer to survey the wilderness area for noxious weeds.

The project came at the request of Wyoming Game and Fish.

It's the first time that FCWP will survey the area near Dubois via horseback, with contractors traveling into the backcountry for several days.

FCWP agency has $4,900 budgeted for the project that's aimed to prevent the spread of noxious weeds from county to county.

"We want to make sure we protect our borders from those plants," FCWP assistant supervisor Nancy Pieropan said. "Once they get out of the box, they're very hard to control."

While many noxious weeds are ubiquitous across Wyoming, others remain contained to certain regions.

Fremont County has been hit particularly hard by ox-eye daisy, for example, while Park and Teton counties have been unusually challenged by Dalmatian toadflax.

Making sure those species don't spread over the Wind River Mountains is key to preventing uncontrollable spread later.

"So when we find it, we kill it when it when it's the size of a desktop instead of the size of a football field," Pieropan said.

If certain noxious weeds are found, FCWP will make them a priority under its "Early Detection Rapid Response" program.

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